Salone del Mobile Milano

Trend research: SuperNormal – Extra-Ordinary Design


Design speaks softly and discreetly brings a touch of “extraordinariness” to the most ordinary of objects. Faithful to its final purpose, design intuition focuses on the functionality and ease of use of furniture and furnishings, making for clean-cut looks and a sort of “considered minimalism.

The idea is to dot objects around the spaces that tell small stories yet have a major impact on quality of life and everyday rituals, doing their job as best they can and/or throwing new light on shapes, uses and actions that we take for granted and improving them.

This trend harnesses the needs of a steadily growing band of evolved and aware consumers capable of seeing beyond the “bling” patina effect, which they regard as de trop, and who are instead on the look out for products that are good at what they do, essential, durable, practical and innovative despite their formal simplicity.


Discover the hidden beauty of ordinary life is the principle behind all the work produced by Hong Kong Ziinlife! Its mission to make quality design accessible and a genuine ally in the pursuit of happiness has inspired furnishings such as Green Tea Table, a storage table that gives shape to the need new generations feel to pay tribute in new ways to the ancient traditions and customs, such as tea drinking.


This furnishing solution therefore contains the space and items necessary for making tea properly, from the tank of purified water to the shelves for cups and teapot, in a contemporary homage to customs of the past.


Then there is Reaching Bookshelf. A piece of furniture equipped with doors, from which an arc-shaped bookshelf protrudes. What at first sight looks simply appears to be a decorative element actually enables current reading matter to be on show and to hand, while the closed section protects other books from dust, lending an orderly look to the room.

Two examples of how this approach to design manages to effectively combine looks and functionality to create products conceptualised by the heart and conceived by the mind.


Thought up by Meike Langer, Beaugars is a piece of furniture on which to hang up, lay and store objects in daily use. The structural elements have been pared down to a minimum; a wooden bench serves as a horizontal shelf and the metal arcs act as supports, also lending themselves to the most disparate of uses: clothes rail, umbrella stand or simply framework.

Another distinctive feature is the possibility of altering its footprint according to the free space available, meaning that Beaugars can become more or less compact, as specifically required. Its structure also allows the user to compose their own personal landscape of objects, which takes shape spontaneously according to the habits and identity of the person. Almost as though it was not a completely finished object, a canvas that reinvents itself, constantly recreating its look according to the use each person puts it to.

Thus, every day, even the most ordinary objects, often left lying about the house or tidied away, find a temporary home and become furnishing protagonists