{Wish I Was Wednesday} Dave Hakkens Interview

Happy Hump Day! You may remember the first post about Dave Hakkens’ work from almost a year ago. Dave contacted me to show me his latest work and again he doesn’t let down. I thought I’d share his constant innovative way of thought to everyone again.

Let’s start off with an interview of this young Netherlands based designer.

What inspires you?
I guess people around me with their daily routines and their problems.
I like to observe them and see if I can improve or make their lives better.
And in the back of my mind thinking about bigger problems to solve, depressed people, waste of material, can’t keep up this fast system etc. And try to solve those problems, but it’s difficult if you are still a little guy in this big world.
But I definitely think it’s possible!

What designer do you admire most?
I haven’t really got a particular designer which I admire, it’s more projects or work methods which i like.
Some examples:
Endless chair of dirk vander kooij ( I like how he uses waste and turns it in a new product which doesn’t feel like it is made out of waste.
Bottles of klaas kuiken ( Really like how he re-uses material without completely melting or crushing it but just making a simple change which makes it a completely new but beautiful object
Piet Hein Eek: Like that he has his own workshop and makes everything himself. He really knows the materials that he is working with.
Maarten baas: Different way of thinking about form and design which I like..

What made you want to become a designer?
When I was a little boy, I was not creative at all, didn’t like to draw paint or anything like that. If you asked me to draw something I always draw the same things. Could think of anything myself, back then I even stole the signature of my sister since her name is Denise Hakkens she used the letters ‘D Hakkens” which (thank god) where also my initials. At the end of my secondary education me and a friend started making T-shirts for our little skate group. I started learning Photoshop and Illustrator. This I liked! So for my high school, I went to Sintlucas in Boxtel. I didn’t really had a clue what I wanted to do, but I liked making shirts, logos, etc.
This was all possible at this school so I went. After half a year there the department 3D design caught my attention. I had never thought of how almost everything around us is designed. This was awesome.
After 4 years I graduated there and wanted more. I went to the design academy in Eindhoven and this is where I still am.

What do you think is the most important thing in design?
I think it always used to be to make the user happy, but nowadays with all the global issues it’s more then just make something that’s looks good and works good.
People throw away a lot of stuff. They don’t even repair it. They just buy a new one. Probably because all that stuff is badly designed.
A lot of stuff is now made to throw away (like cradle to cradle/green design) I do not believe in those things, you make something to throw away.
You can recycle the materials, but all the energy from production/transportation/assembling is lost.
Can’t we just make something which lasts 10 times as long, which probably is more expensive. But the quality  and the functionality is much higher, I believe that this would make life so much better.
But I know this is hard…people would rather buy 10 things less expensive then one good product, but I think I’m going to change this.
So for me good design is stuff that works good, lasts really long, and never loses its value (when you don’t like it you just sell it to someone else instead of throwing away.)
I think design can give this value.

What is your favorite project to date?
I think that would be the big tea mug, I think people will really start loving this mug and never throw it away. It will make the people and the world happy.
And I like the precious paper project, kids have so much stuff and toys. I really believe they don’t need so much of that but just a good idea to play with.

What will your next project be?
I recently designed a hook which is hidden in the wall which I’m further developing and try to bring it to the market with another company.
And a floor for swimming pools is coming…

Thank you so much to Dave for taking the time to share his thoughts with us today! Without further ado, I’d like to share his latest work.


Handmade For The Industry:

Dave embraces the fact that most of the products around us are produced industrially. So, for his latest project, he worked on hand forming and making models for electric plugs with a handmade feel that would be ready for production. He also designed the plug to be easily layered so that multiple devices can be plugged into one outlet. When people dispose of electronics, usually the plug/adapter is also thrown away. His idea is to make people appreciate the beautiful organic look of the plug and detach it for reuse on your next electronic device. How clever and green!



Precious Paper:

Project 1:

The value of children’s drawings and the quick to trash gift wrap paper helped Dave Hakkens dream up paper rolls to inspire little ones to draw on rolled paper that could then to used as unique gift wrap. Three rolls were created based on age group. A roll with sporadic words to encourage doodling for six years old and over, a roll with started lines and shapes to promote continuation for seven years old and over and a blank roll with included tips and ideas for eight years old and over.

 Project 2:


This project came to reality when Dave went to a toy store and realized how many toy options there were. With different ones for each age group, they seem almost disposable as they grow up. Dave wanted to come up with a simple toy that could keep them occupied for hours regardless of age. He designed this poster with lots of games and ideas for common household items to become materials for projects.

 Your Big Tea Mug:

Dave worked together with his friend Lieke in producing Your Big Tea Mug. They both love tea (of which I am also guilty) and they realized they were refilling their tea quite often (of which I am also guilty). They decided to make their own extra large ceramic cup to be personalized by Lieke with illustrations of your choosing. I love how whimsy and sweet they are. Plus, the idea of having this to warm yours hands during the cold months is so enticing!


{Dave Hakkens} Website

What designers do you follow? Have you seen any new and cool innovations?


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