Design Focus: Hend Krichen Homewares

Owning a renovation project home is a funny old thing. You constantly want to be surrounded by inspiration and ideas to inform future decisions you make whilst at the same time trying to ignore almost everything because what’s the point in looking at pretty mirrors when you don’t even have plaster on the walls? I’ve certainly been guilty of making decisions based around a finishing touch and I’ve learned that for me anyway it’s not the way to do things.

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So I try to keep temptation on the downlow, especially when it comes to the kitchen and dining room because we really are at absolute storage capacity with the kitchen in its current guise. As for the dining room, well the less said about that the better. But I am only human (as much as I’d like to believe otherwise) and occasionally my eye will spy something that is just THAT special I can’t stop thinking about it.

This is how I felt when I came across the beautiful homewares collection by Hend Krichen. Even though it was only online I couldn’t stop admiring the beautiful colour combinations and aesthetically pleasing designs that made me want to reach through my laptop and touch it. I don’t even know how the self-titled Hend Krichen has escaped my radar so far because her designs are exactly what I love in crockery and tableware. Minimal but chic; a statement whilst being understated.

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Tunisian-born yet London-based, Hend is a graduate of Kingston University completing her studies in 2012 with an MA in Design: Product and Space. Her first collection was produced that same year, inspired by a challenging period in Tunisia’s history. Now she takes inspiration from different regions and “embraces the variety and authenticity of the crafts manufacturing platforms available across rich cultures. This approach has also helped in maintaining an ethical network of manufacturers across the various locations”.

Whilst the Hend Krichen studio is based in London, the manufacturing process takes place entirely by hand in Portugal’s UNESCO world heritage site. The commitment to tell a regional story runs throughout the production process as it’s locally sourced earthenware which is used.

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Something that Hend is particularly focused on is to take the every day objects we use regularly – the breakfast cup and saucer, a plate, a jug – and create them in a timeless design, allowing the craftmanship to take centre stage with a use of raw, natural materials. To me, this allows us as the consumer to engage on a more thoughtful level with our every day activities. I’ve seen people talking about how much more enjoyable a cup of tea is if it’s in the right mug, or how much they enjoy a ritual of creating a beautiful place setting even if it’s not a special occasion. Shouldn’t every day, every meal time be a special occasion?

Perhaps it’s time to slow down a little and celebrate beautiful form, classic design and take a breather to enjoy those small activities, engage with each other and appreciate simplicity.

All images courtesy of Hend Krichen.

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