Piet Hein Eek is usually noted alongside the scrapwood furniture that made him famous throughout the world, but the Dutch designer is more, much more. Without being held back by rules or habits, he designs and manufactures furniture, lighting and accessories, but also complete interiors. Occasionally, he strikes up a collaboration with a different company. In the past he has worked with a very diverse array of associations and designers.
This time he teamed up with the young design brand LEFF amsterdam. Together they created the tube series, a timeless design collection. The collection consists of three items, the tube clock, the tube audio and the tube wood. As a starting point for the design of the collection Eek took a tube and an extrusion ring. ‘Extrusion moulding is a design technique involving forcing metal, or paste for example, through a mould. The extrusion profile is what gives the material its shape. I devised a ring like that for the design of the dial.’ The circular cylinder-shape of the tube clock is exactly the same size as a standard drill size, which makes it possible to integrate the clock in all kinds of surfaces.
LEFF amsterdam manufactures the brass, stainless steel and copper tube-shaped clocks itself. ‘Normally, we take care of all the production and distribution ourselves,’ says Eek. ‘But the great thing about a partnership like this is that you ultimately develop something that you would not have been able to achieve on your own. For example, the LEFF amsterdam team came up with the idea of making speakers alongside the clocks, so we designed speakers in the same shape as the tube clocks: the tube audio.
Eek designed special wooden beams into which the tube shaped clocks fit perfectly, the tube wood. For the launch of the collection, he designed unique large beams with built-in clocks that will be displayed at various trade shows and in stores. The collection was launched during Dutch Design Week in Eek’s premises in Eindhoven, the massive former Philips ceramics factory that he purchased years ago with his partner Nob Ruijgrok and has transformed into a creative stronghold, with a workshop, offices, a retail outlet and restaurant.