Ceramic dildos decorated with Dutch blue milkmaids, 14-carat gold staples and a carpet made to look like the scene of a spattered fox are only a few of the pieces that make up the Oooms design portfolio.
Not exactly everyday necessities, but they are definitely conversation starters.
“We just like to make you smile while you use our products, that’s all,” says Guido Ooms, co-founder of Oooms design. He and partner Karin van Lieshout, don’t take themselves too seriously, they like to have fun with their work and push the boundaries. But that doesn’t mean they don’t work hard, they just like what they do.
When van Lieshout was in school she was fascinated by how something awful could attract and keep attention. This odd behaviour inspired her to create the Road Kill carpet. It is in effect an ode to rubber-necking…or as the website description states “A continuous struggle between attraction and repulsion. It’s a warm, soft, cuddly carpet that attracts you to take a nap on it. But at the same time it’s a repulsive image of a car-flattened, bloody fox.”
Obviously all Oooms designs aren’t for the faint of heart, but for those looking to add a little fun to their abodes, Oooms might be just what you are looking for. The designs all have a playful, but smart side to them.
If cocktail parties and entertaining friends reign high on your list of priorities then Oooms most definitely has a few products for you. The Glassbulb Light is a fixture made out of numerous wine glass shaped bulbs that give off a soft soothing glow, making it perfect for an intimate dinner for two, or dinner party among friends. The LED lights will last for 30,000 hours or 10 years, yes we call that bang for the buck.
The Puzzleboard is another example of smart and fun design for entertaining. It’s made up of different pieces that fit together to make one long cutting board, but if you separate the pieces they become handy little serving plates for your guests, with a secure spot to hold a wine glass. Genius.
Another top selling piece for the design duo has been their Wooden USB stick. Basically it’s a USB shoved into a piece of tree branch. The nature versus technology debate is at its best here. This unusual little piece is great for corporate give aways…just ask Adidas.
“I am a computer geek, so I love to fiddle around on mine,” says Ooms. “On the other hand, I love working with my hands and getting really dirty in the workshop.”
The workshop is in a former Philips building, which houses variety of artists, painters, web designers and ceramists, designers and musicians.
“This affects us in a positive way,” states Ooms. “Some of the other people in the building work for us, or we for them, so it really is a vibrant place.”
The creative energy of their environment is a driving factor in duo’s quirky work and it’s not hard to see why they have garnered top clients like Paul Smith, Adidas, Hugo Boss and the MoMA, to name but a few.
They have had some unusual…but fun collaborations as well. Last year Oooms Design was contacted by TotalJoy to design a series of vibrators for the company.
“It was very interesting to dive into the world of porn and ugly rubber dicks!” says Ooms with a laugh. “It was a lovely time and I think we succeeded in our goal of make them more ‘cute.’”
So after succeeding in the vibrator market, what more could this duo have to accomplish? Some might say not much, but not Ooms and van Lieshout. They are brimming with ideas for future products and projects.
“We’ve been asked to do a workshop in Mexico in June. It’s something we wanted to do for a long time, so I think it will be a blast. We love to teach to students and we love to travel. Here it all will be combined!” says Ooms.