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The Best Things We Saw at Milan Design Week

Milan Design Wekk KV

Words Hannah Dean & Steph Wade Date 25 April 2024

As Milan Design Week has just transpired, one thing quickly became clear: the world’s design capital was buzzing with creative energy, with unmissable works covering all corners of the city.

We spent the week previewing countless exhibitions, private tours, limited-edition collections, panel discussions, and, of course, a party or three. While some brands and studios looked to design masters from the past, others merged art, technology, and fashion—proving that cross-industry collaboration will always produce the most exciting results. Here’s our round-up of the most intriguing launches across the city.

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Sabine Marcelis and cc-tapis

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Design Hotels presents Further at Caffé Populaire

Caffé Populaire by Lambert & Fils and DWA Design Studio

For the third edition of Caffé Poppulaire, a five-day aperitivo pop up in the garden of DWA Design studio, Lambert & Fils and DWA Design Studio presented a joint exhibition. The new collection “Isle”, by Lambert & Fils was designed in collaboration with Zoë Mowat; light fixtures complete with solid-stone and aluminum pedestals were suspended mid-air. DWA Design Studio, meanwhile, teamed up with Perdrali for its “Unico” collection of sculptural vessels in earthy tones. A bright orange food bar set the scene for culinary studio AnanasAnanas, featuring glassworks by designer Sophie Lou Jacobsen.

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Caffé RIMOWA by Rimowa and La Marzocco

The two heritage brands Rimowa and La Marzocco hosted a five-day cafe pop up outside of Spazzio Maiocchi, to celebrate the launch of the limited-edition collaboration “Linea Mini”. The compact espresso machine draws on the signature design of Rimowa in grooved aluminum and silver steel. Set inside a sleek, red-tiled cafe, the collaboration was a celebration of classic Italian coffee culture.

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Sculptural Beds by Rooms Studio at Siam

Georgian design duo Rooms Studio presented six sculptural beds at the Italian Art School Siam, sometimes with unexpected twists employing metallic mattresses and exhaust pipes. Nata Janberidze and Keti Toloraia, the minds behind the design of two Design Hotels properties Rooms Khazbegi and Rooms Tbilisi, designed each bed to be the focal point of six distinct interiors. “Bedrooms are essential spaces in our daily lives, serving as intimate sanctuaries where we begin and end each day,” they said.

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FLOS at Palazzo Visconti

Italian lighting brand Flos took over the historical Palazzo Visconti in a full-room, mirrored installation. Against the backdrop of the palazzo's elegant architecture, Flos showcased new collections by design studios Barber Osgerby and Formafatasma, alongside anniversary editions of London-based designer Michael Anastassiades’ IC Lights. The installation merged baroque interiors with contemporary design in a symphony of light and reflection.


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Capsule Plaza

Spanning multiple venues this year, the second edition of Capsule Plaza promised the same interdisciplinary curation of designers and brands across various creative fields, exploring the radical designs of today. Among the line-up, a lounge to celebrate the work and legacy of renowned designer Verner Panton, and collaborations between Harry Nuryev and Poltronova, and BD Barcelona and Mueller van Severen.


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Frederik Fialin at Tandem, Oxilia Gallery

In the north of Milan, Oxilia Gallery presented “Tandem”, an exhibition featuring minimalist furniture designs by Berlin-based Frederik Fialin, and ceramic and textile works by French-Swiss artist Réjeany Frederik.

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Bar Unikko by Marimekko and Apartamento Magazine

In celebration of the iconic Unikko print’s 60th anniversary, Finnish brand Marimekko teamed up with Apartamento to take over the Milanese institution Bar Stoppani over the course of Design Week. The local cafe was adorned with the unmistakable Unikko poppy pattern, designed by Maija Isola in 1964, across the floor, tableware, and outdoor awning.


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Habitación 116 at UNNO Gallery

Mexican architectural studio Habitación 116 presented their five-piece collection Criollo, as part of a group exhibition at Unno gallery. Inspired by Clara Porset’s 1947 exhibition, the collection draws on Porset’s designs showcased at the Aino and Alvar Aalto showroom, informed by her own own living space and tailored for one-bedroom apartments. Throughout the collection, familiar forms and materials mirror Porset’s and H116’s approach to incorporating Mexican cultural references in contemporary design principles.

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Rude Arts Club by Faye Toogood

At the unique cc-tapis showroom in Piazza Santo Stefano 10, artist and designer Faye Toogood conceived a series of creative rooms to showcase two unique launches: “Cosmic”, Toogood and Tacchini’s collection of furniture, and “Rude”, a series of handmade rugs with cc-tapis, exploring sex and the body from a female perspective—with amusing titles such as “Tongue-And-Cheek”, “Poking Fun”, and “Blue Tit.”

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Rapt Studio’s Design is Language; Speak for Yourself

In Milan’s Porta Venezia district, interior designers Rapt Studio revealed an immersive installation challenging visitors to explore their own design vernacular. Three spaces featured contrasting displays: an animated collage of AI-generated design, curated objects of personal merit and history, and a final living-room scenario designed around the lives of a Milanese couple, backdropped by a video recording of the past days spent within the space. The exhibition and its prompts invite the audience to reflect on how we experience design individually and collectively, both past and present.

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