What Can you Bring Home from DIFFA’s Dining by Design 2010?

mmpi tabletop at diffa's dining by design 2010

mmpi tabletop at diffa\'s dining by design 2010

I did not cover earlier the DIFFA’s event of the year, which is the Dining by Design 2010, because, frankly, I was disappointed by the tabletops. I revisited the various reports yesterday night and tried to see if they were some elements that I could repurpose or recycle at home. I found two that are worth mentioning.

manhattan tabletop at diffa\'s dining by design 2010

From the Manhattan tabletop, take note on how they used toys and tourist souvenirs to create a scene. You can do the same for a kids birthday party. In fact, Amy Atlas worked around that concept when she designed her son’s Take Off birthday party.

You can add an illusion of space when designing your dining table with this simple trick. Sandwich service carts on wheels between two console tables to achieve a roomy square table (top picture). You could bring back the caddy to the kitchen between services. Doing that enables you to tailor the carts to the courses and to bring an element of surprise at the reveal. See more tabletops at John Simon Daily and a slideshow on the New York Times.

+ MMPI table: photo via John Simon Daily – designed by Poggenpohl & Harry J. Daniell
+ Manhattan Magazine table: photo via John Simon Daily – designed by Marc Wilson & Mark Tamayo

  • Lara McCulloch
    April 9, 2010 at 11:51

    Kim, I couldn’t agree more! I looked through the captured images from DIFFA and gone were the innovative designs, boundary-pushing concepts and mind-spinning substrates. It was, well, ho hum. What happened, I wonder? Were people holding back due to the recession? Did they switch it up and have accountants a go at designing? Hmmm…

    Great job extracting some learnings though 🙂

    • At Home with Kim Vallee
      April 9, 2010 at 12:11

      Lara: I am happy to see that I am not alone who was disappointed. One thing I noticed is that many tabletops were from mainstream brands. I guess they wanted to push their collection and opted to stay true to their culture instead of being very creative. I hope that next year will bring us a more inspiring and exquisite crop.