The Brilliance of Braun

braunOne of the most influential brands to come out of the 1970′s has got to be Braun. Not to be confused with the Braun we know today – after being acquired by P&G they became bland, dull and ultimately meaningless. No, the Braun of the seventies was a design powerhouse, producing some of the most iconic everyday pieces of consumer electronics ever designed.

Led by Dieter Rams, the Braun of the seventies embraced a design sensibility that was both minimalist and modernist-inspired, leaving us with a collection of timeless pieces that are fast disappearing into the homes of collectors worldwide.

Though product design is slightly removed from what we do at Sage, their approach to what Rams called ‘Good Design’ translates quite well.

Ten Principles of Good Design

  1. Good Design is innovative
  2. Good Design makes a product useful
  3. Good Design is aesthetic
  4. Good Design helps us to understand a product
  5. Good Design is unobtrusive
  6. Good Design is honest
  7. Good Design is durable
  8. Good Design is consequent to the last detail
  9. Good Design is concerned with the environment
  10. Good Design is pure and simple

For nearly 30 years, Dieter Rams served as head of design at Braun until his retirement in 1998. Many of his designs have found permanent homes in museums and galleries around the world, including MoMA in New York. And much like his designs themselves, the principles he helped to define for the industry have a lasting, timeless quality.

Famous for defining ‘good design’ as ‘as little design as possible’, Rams had a full appreciation for the importance of clarity over cacophony – and that’s a tenet that travels incredibly well. I have a feeling the man’s influence will endure for years to come.

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