~ Cosmos// Daniel Emma and Guerlian

Since seeing the latest Aliens installation 'Prometheus', I have been dreaming of all things beautiful, metallic(nothing unsual there) and space inspired. The film is beautifully imagined by Arthur Max, metallics against sparse natural backgrounds, a mixes use of copper, gold, blacks and alabaster white. I have been thinking about designs based around my current inspiration.

The Wallpaper Handmade issue includes 'Cosmos' designed by Daniel To and Emma Aiston of Daniel-Emma, a collection of galactic forms in satin brass, which open to reveal the cosmetics. The collection was commissioned by Wallpaper, who teamed up an international cast of star designers, craftsmen and makers have conjured up remarkable works for this year's Handmade showcase. I must add that not only is 'Cosmos' a beautiful series of elements, but earlier work from Daniel-Emma is just as beautifully designed in their form, colour and material. Inspirational work!
Cosmos make-up collection by Daniel Emma and Guerlain
'These items are sculptural pieces that conceal the makeup inside,' To says 'items that could stand alone on a dressing table without looking like you forgot to tidy up'
Cosmos , Wallpaper Handmade Issue Sketchbook
I was fortunate to be able to ask Daniel & Emma a few questions:

What inspires your design process - be it a film, music, fashion, materials, experiences etc.
Our inspiration comes from far and wide. It is quite varied, day to day things inspire us like going on bike rides and visiting the ocean. We also like collecting things, particularly those that have no value to anyone else......... maps, tins, snowglobes, old toys etc. We enjoy listening to different types of music from pop to classical and also enjoy a watching films like The Fantastic Mr Fox and Ponyo.  These are all normal elements of our lives but impact the way we see the world and in turn the designs we put out into it!
Do you work in a 2D(sketch) to 3D form or do you start with 3D forms and see where it takes you? 
Our ideas nearly always start off as a sketch (they very rarely make it onto a computer) we then jump straight into prototyping (usually in the materials that the end product will be made) as it is through this we can see how the designs work and what they feel and look like in real life. 
Brass paperweights, hex - 70 x 28 x 25
What's the next project that you are working on?
A new collection of products to be launched at Design Junction in London this September!
How would you described the DANIEL EMMA vision & style?
We aim to always create objects which are 'just nice.'
Brass Paperweights, Solid Polished Brass
 More Q&A about the project:
How did the project come about? Who approached who?  
We were approached by Wallpaper magazine earlier in the year to participate in their annual exhibition in Milan.  The project sees small design studios be paired with big international brands to collaborate on fictitious 'in a perfect world' design briefs!
What did you design for the exhibition?  
We designed a set of three dressing table accessories for the Parisian cosmetics company Guerlain.  These items are sculptural pieces that conceal the make-up inside.  We have used Guerlain's lipstick, powder, and eyeliner to design accessories for.
Hemispheres, first shown at Ventura Lambrate during the 2011 Milan Furniture fair.
What did the design have to achieve? What does it do?  
We had free reign over the brief but set ourselves the constraints of designing a harmonious collection using 3 different products.  We also wanted to remain true to our design philosophy of making products which are 'just nice.'  There was considerable thought put into the forms and the way they relate to one another and also the materials and finishes we have chosen to use.  At the end of the day even tough we aren't designers of cosmetics accessories, we wanted the aesthetic of the pieces to be DANIEL EMMA.
What materials did you use in the piece? 
Machined and polished solid Brass, Aluminum, and Guerlain cosmetics
What happens to the installation and the pieces exhibited after the fair is over?  
The pieces went to London where they were photographed for a special feature in the August issue of Wallpaper Magazine. At present the designs are merely concepts and won't be going into any form of production, but who knows what the future holds!
Mirror, Polished & Machined 6mm 304 Stainless Steel
Over the years make-up packaging has moved away from decorative gold to minimally embellished, matt black casings. However, Guerlain, a perennial cosmetic favourite of ours, has generally stuck to its opulent guns. We saw an opportunity to make an edit of its make-up classics and dress them to suit a modern environment. In the hands of Daniel Emma, the Handmade collection became a trio of galactic forms in satin brass, which discreetly open to reveal a Guerlain colour classic. Wallpaper
Project Name: Cosmos, exhibited as part of the Wallpaper Handmade Exhibition
Project Client: Wallpaper Magazine, Guerlain
Project Location: Milan Furniture Fair 2012
Completion Date: April 2012

Images courtesy of Daniel Emma
Photography: Tommaso Sartori 
Wallpaper Hadmade Issue