In contrast to the austere sensibilities some Nordic designers develop from living in the hallmark light and dark seasons of Northern Europe, Danish design company Menu offers a more light-hearted and easy-going style they lovingly call soft minimalism.
Menu was founded in 1976, and for nearly forty years they have combined a tireless work ethic with a good attitude and friendly sense of humour, never giving the impression that they take themselves too seriously. This implicit joy and passion for their trade ensure that they are an attractive collaborator for designers, which in turn means more fresh and playful designs to keep the brand on the forefront of innovation and timelessness. Hence Menu works with a long list of very talented architects and designers in the region: Danish Norm Architects, Norwegian StokkeAustad, and Swedish Note Design Studio – just for starters – are all involved. They are known not just for their successful work with established talent, but also for collaborating with emerging designers and taking chances. Upholding this reputation, the company invites submissions of design proposals that fit their criteria of aesthetic durability, visual-tactile balance, and of course one of the main drivers of creation: functionality.
But what Menu has built is made of more than just good attitude and marketability; the library of designs is bolstered by the brand’s confidence that comes from knowing that all of their collections uniquely illustrate the company’s appreciation for original details. Achieving solutions with an intuitive sense of function, and by working from the premise that simplification of form and clarity of concept are the keys to maintaining authenticity in design, they avoid the pitfalls of over-designed and non-intuitive pieces.