24th Jul 2019
Italian design house Alessi is renowned for bringing its sophisticated creative nous to ordinary objects in daily use. What it’s already done for the juicer, the bottle opener and the eggcup, it’s about to do for the electric kettle with the arrival of the Plissé Electric Kettle into Australia.
Available in classic shades of black and white, the functional elements of the Plissé are simple: it boils water, sits on a discreet hidden base, features thermal insulation (so you can place it on a bench straight after boiling), and is equipped with an anti-limescale filter. Where it most excels though, is in its design.
Made from sculptural thermoplastic resin the Plissé Electric Kettle takes its inspiration from fashion. Delicate pleats have long been a signature of fashion designers. Japanese maestro Issey Miyake began experimenting with pleating in the 1980s. For the autumn/winter 2019 season, pleated skirts once again fluttered down runways across the globe — glistening and metallic at Alberta Ferretti and Emilio Pucci, and in leather and sheer silk at Fendi. Pleats move with a fluid femininity, and the crisp lines articulate a refined strength. It’s a paradox that translates beautifully to the everyday object designed to transcend seasonal trends.
“With the skillful and creative use of pleating, fashion designers shape fabrics and create clothes like sculptural works of art,” says Plissé designer Michele De Lucchi. “The Plissé was shaped starting from a folded sheet of paper, then developed and produced by Alessi as if it were a beautiful sartorial object. The folds give form to the shape — they structure it — because a form without folds is only a volume without form. The folds transform simple two-dimensional sheets into three-dimensional objects.”
De Lucchi is an architect and designer who has been creating magic for Alessi since 2014. For the last five years he has been responsible for neo-classic hits like the Pulcina espresso coffee maker and the Raggiante wall clock. In Plissé, you can’t help but see his powerful architectural vision and personal passion for sculpture. His respect for artisanal skills is clear too. “The Plissé kettle’s shape is defined by its folds, a technique that is quite old but still very much in use today,” he says.
As with all Alessi designs, the Plissé Electric Kettle is too special to store away behind cupboard doors. The sculptural folds add a subtle sophistication, a softness and a feminine curve to kitchens of all kinds.
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