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Kelly Lin, designer of KIMU


跨越7900公里的距離,以及六小時的時差,分隔在台灣與芬蘭兩地的三位好朋友Kelly, Alex, Ketty是柒木設計的起始點。因為所屬環境的文化差異,又或許是兒時想要成為考古學家的浪漫想法,柒木設計的核心以交織新舊時光為概念,結合東西方元素,巧妙融合現代與傳統。

從2013年創立至今,柒木設計的產品線已從文具小物延伸至大型傢飾,風格從從諧趣幽默到慢慢定義了專屬於他們的靜謐美感,市場也亞洲拓展到了歐洲,更曾獲紅點設計獎、英國設計雜誌Wallpaper Award等多項國內外指標性設計獎項肯定。

與Kelly Lin林宜賢在多年前相識,她獨特的設計視野與生活風格深深吸引著我們。身為柒木設計的三分之一,Kelly將在本次專訪中與我們分享如何將對於生活的眷戀,轉化為能夠被具體化的靈感,以及在創業一路以來的喜悅與甘苦。

KIMU all started with an idea: “Insist on doing this one thing for a lifetime.”

Overcoming 7900-kilometer distance, with six-hour time differences, separated from Taiwan and Finland, good friends Kelly, Alex, and Ketty are the three creative strengths behind KIMU. Being constantly inspired by such different cultures, the chemistry between the east and the west naturally becomes the spark that lights up their collaborated works. Perhaps, it was the childhood dream of being archaeologists that also led them to focus their design on bringing more classic and traditional objects into modern day life.


Since 2013, KIMU has expanded their product line from small stationeries to large furniture; has made their design style to grow from whimsical to sophisticated; and has also successfully developed a market from Asia to Europe with numerous design awards including Reddot and the Wallpaper Design Award.


We’ve known Kelly Lin for quite some time, and we are deeply inspired by her unique design vision and lifestyle. Being one-third of KIMU Design, Kelly is going to share her fascination of life, which gives her motivation to move forward, and the bitter sweet journey of starting a business.


Can you show us KIMU’S new collection?

首先介紹的這個 “多寶閣”。它的概念是傳統的收納物件,外型就像是桌上的旋轉樓梯,一層一層延伸開展,用來珍藏貴重的事物。我們運用現代金屬的加工方式以及用色,讓多寶閣有了當代的樣貌,也強化了結構性,讓桌上的雜物輕鬆而確實被收納歸類。

接下來要介紹的是“時盅,時鐘”,我們一直覺得時間的流逝不再只是手機螢幕上的數字顯示,“時盅,時鐘”改變時間的閱讀方式與觀感,鐘罩內的指針轉盤上能夠支撐小物件隨著分秒旋轉,用喜愛的事物定義自己的時間。 提醒時間沒有流失,而是轉成了珍貴的生活細節。


First, I would like to introduce“The Reveal Container”. It is a traditional storage box for you to store your personal valuables; looks like a circular stairway, layer by layer expands. We’ve applied modern metal processing and coloring to“The Reveal Container”to strengthen its structure, which also gives a contemporary look to it.

Next up, the“Twirl Timepiece”. People are used to checking time on phone devices nowadays, however, four digital numbers do not define the passing of time.“Twirl Timepiece”redefines how time is read; under the glass cloche lays the possibility for cherished possessions that will serve as a reminder that time is never lost, but remains in the objects that are precious to us.

Last but not least, we are releasing a new colorway for the beloved “Pose Table Mirror”. A lot of research has been done on this color, “red”; it appears to be not so oriental, quite cold, and has a low color saturation level. You can easily tell that this“red” fits perfectly with KIMU at first sight.


What was one of your biggest lessons learned last year?


在華山的快閃店讓我們獲益良多,這是KIMU第一次籌備實體店面,從無到有的過程雖然辛苦但也帶來滿滿感動。因為從來沒有接觸過零售,一開始真的沒想到經營一間店面需要這麼多的事前準備、以及開店後面臨的各種突發狀況,但非常開心能藉由這樣的空間面對面接觸喜歡KIMU 的朋友,現在想起來仍然很感謝、很滿足。

We’ve learned a lot during the opening of KIMU pop-up store in Huashan1914. This is the very first physical store for KIMU; the process of preparing, starting from scratch, is hard and stressful, but at the same time, it is emotionally moving. We have never tried retail, never expected to spend this much time preparing beforehand, and never thought of various circumstances after opening. Despite all that, we’re delighted and thankful for this opportunity to meet KIMU fans in person.




What’s next -can you share with us your visions or some of your goals?



We're currently sending out a fundraising questionnaire for “The Reveal Container”, other than that, we’re hoping to expand KIMU in Japan in 2019. During the pop-up store here in Huashan1914, we’ve received so much love and support from our Japanese customers. Most of the products made by KIMU are small and medium sized, which fits right into the limited living space in Japan. However, the Japanese market is both saturated and complicated, it is best for us to think through and make plans in order to let more people in Japan learn about KIMU.



Which piece from your collection is your favorite and why?



“The New Old Vase” might be my favorite one. After releasing The New Old Vase, I started thinking seriously about the connection and relationship between planting and the environment. By taking floristry courses, and practicing flower arranging, I realize that this piece of art had truly walked into my life.



What words of advice do you have for someone following their own career path and setting up a brand/business?



Stay persistent, no matter how life and environment changes, stick to your core value. This is the only way to keep going.



Your go-to favorite sources for inspiration?


社群平台的讓資訊的取得變得簡單且輕鬆,光是在Instagram搜尋 #design就能得到許多靈感;閱讀室內設計相關雜誌和書籍,像是Milk Decoration和Apartmento等等,我比較喜歡觀察人在空間裡的樣子;除此之外旅行也是獲得靈感最好的途徑。

It’s easy and simple to get new ideas from social media nowadays, for example hashtag #design on Instagram. Reading interior design books and magazines like Milk Decoration or Apartmento, also gives me inspiration; I love observing people’s behaviors in spaces, apart from that, traveling would definitely help as well.


What else do you like to do besides design?




I’ve been taking ceramic art classes and French classes recently. I wish to improve my work-life balance by learning something new.



What’s on your nightstand?



General things I would need before bed, such as steam eye mask, books, aroma, hand cream, etc.



Last good book you read?



I’ve been reading “Who Was” by MUJI BOOKS lately, a book introducing Yanagi Soetsu (柳宗悅)、Hanamori Yasuji (花森安治)、and Yasujiro Ozu (小津安二郎). This book is designed slim with fewer pages so that it is easier to carry around.

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