Loewe takes luxury to the great outdoors
Spain – The luxury brand has launched a permanent sustainability-focused clothing and accessories collection that uses recycled materials and offsets plastic waste.
Eye/LOEWE/Nature – a play on ‘I love nature’ – features parkas constructed with technical, water-repellent materials and sweaters made from partly recycled cotton fibres. The range, which also includes re-usable water bottles and backpacks, is designed for outdoor wear, with new pieces added each season.
A dedicated logo featuring an eye symbol will be used on certain garments and as an internal motif within the company to highlight the start of its sustainability journey. Jonathan Anderson, creative director for the brand, describes Eye/LOEWE/Nature as ‘a laboratory for the rest of the brand to explore more sustainable practices’.
This hospital retreat immerses patients in nature
Norway – Architectural firm Snøhetta has created a pair of secluded wooden cabins to ease the impact of hospital stays for patients and their families.
They are open to every patient at two of Norway’s largest hospitals and can be reserved through an online booking system. A far departure from the clinical corridors of traditional wards, the retreats offer physical and psychological respite from treatments and the isolation associated with long-term hospitalisation.
Located in forests close to the hospital, the cabins are designed to blend naturally into their surroundings. According to children’s psychologist and one of the project’s initiators Maren Østvold Lindheim, ‘being in natural surroundings brings [patients] a renewed calm that they can bring back with them into the hospital. In this sense, the outdoor care retreat helps motivate patients to get through treatment and contribute to better disease management.’
Health and wellness is increasingly expanding into architecture, as developers and institutions become more aware of the impact of our physical surroundings and the opportunity to incorporate the healing properties of nature.
A supermarket aisle for self-service frozen food
Czech Republic – Globus Hypermarket has introduced a self-service frozen food section that eliminates the need for plastic packaging.
Frozen fruit and vegetables, as well as processed items such as chicken nuggets and onion rings, can be scooped into re-usable or lightweight bags to take home. While these foods would typically be packaged in plastic wrapping and sold in set weights, the supermarket’s new system allows customers to buy the exact amount of food they need with the aim of reducing both food and packaging waste.
With customers buying more frozen food than ever, aware of both the health and convenience benefits, the category is beginning to shed its inferior image. In order to reduce their reliance on plastic, supermarkets must consider the environmental impact of packaged frozen food, expanding their zero-plastic initiatives beyond just fresh produce and dry goods.
CES 2019: LG’s rollable tv disappears in seconds
Las Vegas – The electronics company has introduced the world’s first rollable television, giving home users multiple viewing possibilities while making the screen less conspicuous.
Launched at CES 2019, the LG Signature OLED TV R offers three display modes and can totally disappear at the touch of a button. The design also frees users from the limitations of mounting the screen on a wall, allowing them to arrange their living space in a way that adapts to their changing needs, akin to Bang & Olufsen’s Beosound Edge speaker.
To perform different functions, the tv’s display panel can rise and unroll to different heights: full view, line view and zero view. With zero view, the screen is entirely hidden from view, tucked away inside the base, although users can still enjoy music and other audio content through its speakers.
The unobtrusive design reflects a wider effort among manufacturers to make large televisions less conspicuous. In a similar vein, our Silent Homes microtrend explores how luxury consumers are seeking noise-masking solutions to combat the hum of connected devices.
Stat: Global definitions of beauty are evolving
A recent global survey by Euromonitor shows that definitions of beauty are changing among consumers, becoming a mix of both external characteristics and inner confidence. For more than half of respondents, (53.3%) ‘looking healthy’ was the top-rated definition of beauty, followed closely by ‘hygiene and cleanliness’ (51.3%) and ‘being comfortable in your own skin’ (46.6%).
Driven by a growing belief among consumers that perfection is not the end goal, the fitness, health and beauty sectors are converging. As beauty and wellness in particular amalgamate, many shoppers are seeking products and treatments that are good for both their internal health and their external appearance. For more, explore our Total Beauty market.
Thought-starter: How will technology send us to sleep?
Meeta Singh, a sleep doctor at Henry Ford Health System, on the complexities of sleep health and how technology will play a new role in achieving good rest.
‘I’m a sleep doctor. I help athletic teams enhance their sleep and minimise sleep deprivation,’ explains Singh. ‘When you’re coaching somebody to sleep better, you’re taking them from wherever their sleep is now to the optimal amount of sleep and improving their sleep performance. I also educate them about falling asleep in line with their circadian clock.’
Singh also discusses the important role that sleep plays for eSports stars. ‘Sports athletes often practise for 14–16 hours per day,’ she says. ‘I think that it would be beneficial for these young people to have a device that helps them measure their sleep and tells them when they were overdoing [their training], so they could live a more balanced life.’
She also speculates on future technologies that could aid our sleep. ‘When you wake up, your body temperature starts to rise. So maybe there will be technology in which the room temperature can be controlled, helping you to sleep better.’
Read the full Q&A here.