Icons: The Letter
Explore what it means to be an icon and what makes something iconic in this quarter’s Letter.
Is that, at the core, what it means to be iconic?
Join us as we go down a rabbit hole and explore what it means to be an icon and what makes something iconic in this quarter’s Letter.
What makes something iconic?
If this is where we begin, then let’s start by looking at what literally makes something, AKA, how is something constructed.
What is iconic construction?
What does it look like?
In the cooking world there is nothing more iconic than fully-clad construction, the method of taking different metals, fusing them together, and using those combined sheets to create an entire cooking vessel, one that has a uniform blend of that optimal metal combo throughout. (This is how Stackware is made!)
Of course not all fully-clad construction is equal – and to create something that truly performs like an icon the thickness of the conductive layers are of the utmost importance. If this type of icon intrigues you, take a look at one of the first blog posts we wrote on the material properties of high performance cookware. It’s a bit of a nerdy deep-dive into materials engineering, but we think it’s fascinating and hope you’ll agree.
Beyond the stove, when we think of iconic construction we think of buildings.
Le Centre Pompidou – iconic for bringing the insides outside.
Nakagin Capsule Tower – an iconic exercise in the utmost space efficiency.
The Masters’ Houses Ensemble: Kandinsky/Klee Master House – an iconic architectural achievement of the Bauhaus. (Check out more of our favorites here).
And, if we think of construction on an even more micro level, we think about welding. Specifically, laser welding.
This is how we attach Stackware’s side brackets (Stackware has eschewed the common construction technique of rivets because they obstruct the interior of a pot or pan, and instead opted to weld the side brackets to each pan.) ENSEMBL does this by hand – a bespoke process to ensure the utmost security. It is worth noting that spacecrafts and aircrafts forgo rivets in lieu of laser welding, too. The process allows for a more streamlined design, and a reduction in the amount of sealing material required, which reduces weight significantly and reduces corrosion.
Of course, icons can also be objects – things that have become iconic because of their design, the way their innovation shapes the future.
A personal obsession at ENSEMBL is the iconic design of Montreal’s staircases – literal steps to create more space to live in the heart of the city. (We love Montreal’s iconic staircases so much we made them into a cool block print and the design for our first kitchen Towel).
Another obsession – lighting. And we never tire of looking at the iconic creations from designers around the world, but for the sake of focus, we invite you to check out a roundup of some of our Danish favorites.
What was most striking as we spoke more about icons while writing this Letter were not just the number of great products, but the way iconic design spans the decades. We took this as an opportunity to put together a roundup of iconic products – those spanning the last 100 years of design.
Finally, we’d be remiss if we didn’t give a nod to our own innovation – Stackware’s Removable Handle. While it is too early (and we’re too modest) to call this iconic, our hope is that the handle technology we created can be the starting point to change the way we think about our cookware, and the products we bring into our homes.
What would a discussion of icons be without spending time looking at the people – past and present – whose contributions have forever altered the world.
We thought it would be fun to daydream about a dinner party of icons – Who would we invite? Where would we host? What would we serve? Check out our fantasy dinner of icons here.
Dream on with us. Icons. Forever.
05.11.2023 | News
Celebrating with Rolls-Royce
Bringing design, innovation, sustainability, performance, luxury, and craftsmanship together.
01.11.2023 | News
Utility Patent Granted
The ENSEMBL: Stackware Removable Handle has received a utility patent.
20.03.2023 | Perspective
100 Years of Iconic Designs
Icons bring together innovation, functionality, timelessness and captivating design. Celebrate 10 of the most iconic products created over the last century of design.
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