Furniture is a big deal in the design industry. A well-executed concept can result in a timeless piece of furniture that never goes out of style.
With this in mind, we've found these inspirational examples of furniture design. Some are classics that have been around for years, others are recent and more modern. But they're all fantastic designs - which of them would you have in your home?
- Also read: Inspiring examples of industrial design (opens in new tab)
01. Malleable desk
With a minimal design, this stylish writing desk was created with the purpose of intensifying the relationship between furniture and owner. Developed by Danish designer Mette Karina Johansen (opens in new tab), the foldable desk is composed of a metal, linear base supporting stretched leather, which absorbs and moulds itself around the items held within the table, subsequently taking on new shapes, influenced by the owner's possessions.
"Furniture builds up over time - the more the furniture recorder traces of the owner's whereabouts and lifestyle, the more it will increase its value for the owner," says Johansen. "The leather's ability to expand is utilized as the owner has the opportunity to influence and shape the product with time."
02. Bench seat
This design features in-built cushions, geometric shapes and comes in a host of different colours. A feat in experimental design (opens in new tab), the bench seat was inspired by Op Art's use of colour and geometric forms. Created by Alessandra Baldereschi Design Studio (opens in new tab) the seat is lovingly named Poppins - a bench with some added personality. It gives the illusion of patterned pillows when, in fact, the fabric pushes through the wood, giving it a brilliant 3D effect.
03. Label chair
Clever furniture design never ceases to amaze us. We've come across some real gems in the past and are continually impressed by designers that manage to reinvent chairs, tables and more with some seriously striking designs.
Taking inspiration from the humble label, Montreal-based designer Félix Guyon and design and construction agency La Firme (opens in new tab) worked together to create this truly unique chair design. Availble in three different varieties, the chair is simple yet beautiful.
04. Typography lamps
It's no secret that we're huge typography (opens in new tab) fans here at Creative Bloq. So you can imagine our excitement when we discovered this super-cool graphic lamp collection by Portugal-based furniture store Delightfull (opens in new tab). Based on a selection of iconic typefaces, including Garamond, Didot, and Bidoni, the lamps come in a spectrum of colours, shapes and sizes, and there's one for each letter of the alphabet, as well as numbers 0-9.
We love to see creatives bringing together diverse design traditions and giving them a contemporary spin, and that's just what Luke St Leger (opens in new tab)'s Japandeco series of bespoke furniture has achieved.
Inspired by both the art deco movement of the '20s, '30s, and '40s and the elegant simplicity of Japanese design, the furniture is created from responsibly sourced, Scandinavian plywood. Each piece is assembled using intricate shapes that slot together forming a sturdy yet graceful structure.
06. Floating wall desk
If you're studio is tight on space then this cool floating wall desk (opens in new tab) by designer Dario Antonioni may be just the thing for you.
Clever use of geometry and physics eliminates the need for legs, with the design able to accommodate both standing or traditional sitting height. The desk also features a full surface slide out tray and wire management slot.
07. Adagio swings
With summer quickly approaching, we'd like to get our hands on some of these awesome basket swings by Italian designer Francesco Rota (opens in new tab), created for design company Paola Lenti.
Made for use both in and outdoors, these designs provide the perfect excuse to take a break and swing to your heart's content - you're never too old for a little bit of childhood nostalgia.
08. Bookworm bookshelf
Forget going to the library, this ingenious bookshelf by Dutch design studio Atelier 010 (opens in new tab)means you can now immerse yourself in the world of literature in the comfort of your own home.
This modern, unique piece of furniture stands by itself thanks to a steel base, has its own seating area and even incorporates a light bulb for late night reading.
09. Cafe chair
This elegant and unusual chair is reminiscent of the chair and desk combinations found in high schools once upon a time.
Designed by Kamilla Lang, the Cafe chair is a modern interpretation of the old school piece, featuring a single piece of curved wood serving as leg, back, and an armrest that serves as a surface for small items - a perfect resting spot for that well earned cup of coffee.
10. My desk
Do you have post it notes and scrap bits of paper all over your workspace? If so, this brilliant table - My desk (opens in new tab) - by designer Miguel Mestre may be the solution to all your problems.
Essentially a giant sketchbook, this stylish table holds a wad of 100x70cm blank paper ready for you to sketch, draw, annotate or simply scribble on. Genius.
11. Eames chair
When we asked the design world about examples of cool furniture, the infamous Eames (opens in new tab) chairs were a popular choice.
Created by Charles and Ray Eames, pieces such as the above lounge chair and ottoman have become recognised as classic, timeless designs, still as comfortable and sought after as when they first appeared back in 1956.
12. Bathtub sofa
We just love this bathtub sofa, which is a contemporary twist on Holly Golightly's couch in the classic film Breakfast at Tiffany's.
Created from a vintage cast iron bath and upholstered in fabric of your choice, this ultra-cool piece of furniture was recycled by designers at Reestore (opens in new tab). Perfect for those of you who fancy something different and have a spare two grand knocking around.
13. Swing table
This playful swing table is certain to inject a bit of fun into an everyday meeting. Or maybe make a mealtime with a difference?
The cool four-poster table, which suspends eight chairs and a light from the frame, was designed Christopher Duffy for Duffy London (opens in new tab). The website description states: "This design creates an exceptionally fun experience and aesthetic, creating a room within a room, with chairs that float around the table, which also make vacuuming a breeze." Yep, anything that saves on housework is great in our book!
14. Nesso table lamp
Designed in 1967 by Giancarlo Mattioli Nesso, this design classic table lamp has won several awards and is in collections of all the world's leading design museums, including MoMA (opens in new tab).
The cool, retro-styled lamp is on many a designer's wish list. But retailing at over $450 each, we might have to wait a bit longer to get our hands on one. We love it though, despite the hefty price tag!
15. Tambour table
This unusual, personal computer table was created by designer Michael Bambino (opens in new tab).
The unique design was inspired by rolling tambour doors, only on a desks that slides open to reveal the contents. In this case, the tabletop can be pushed away to reveal power, usb connections, and useful storage compartments.
16. Bedroom in a box
If you're a stickler for keeping your bedroom tidy, then you'll love this cool design by Latvian-based designer Rolands Landsbergs of Boxetti (opens in new tab).
The designer has created a number of modules, all of which start as a tidy box. The bedroom in a box unit opens up to feature a double bed, night stand and a wardrobe. It is also equipped with a spotlight and an ambience lighting fixture above the headboard. Very neat.
17. WWW shelving units
These brilliant designs by Viktormatic (opens in new tab) prove that shelving doesn't have to be dull.
Using a simple hexagonal woodent frame, the shelves are constructed from adjustable lengths of rope, which means they can be adjusted to suit the owner's needs. So, if you are a lover of big coffee-table books, all you have to do is slide the top shelf up to make them fit. Cool huh?
18. Animal tables
We just love these animal coffee and dining tables by international designer Mark Stoddart (opens in new tab).
Each bronze sculpture has been transformed into a table, with the glass table top acting as water from which the animals emerge. Stoddart has 99 hand-made sculptures in total, mainly of animals but there is also a Titanic-inspired piece and another of a small girl collecting pebbles.
19. Wooden book shelving
There are millions of book shelf designs out there but there's something about this fun design from Fabio Vinella (opens in new tab) that we really like.
Titled 'Once Upon A Time', the box shelving was inspired by old books and designed to resemble them. But not only that, the cool piece also doubles as a sea. Okay, so we're not sure how comfortable it would be, but we love the idea!
20. Vespa workstation
We're pretty sure this would be the most uncomfortable work station ever, but the design is still awesome.
This Vespa scooter turned workstation was created by designer David Giammetta (opens in new tab). With a love for the iconic scooters, Giammeta decided to save this 1968 Vespa Sprint from the scrapyard and recycle it into this awesome piece of designer furniture. Fancy a spin anyone?
21. Panton Chair
We couldn't do a list of inspirational furniture design without featuring the Panton chair. First introduced to the public in 1967, the piece was created by Verner Panton - known as one of the most influential designers of the 1960s and 70s.
Rcognised as a classic of modern furniture design, the Panton chair was one of the first models to belong to the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
22. Piano hanger
How cool is this coat rack? Designed by Patrick Seha for Belgian furniture and accessory manufacturer Feld (opens in new tab), the piano hanger is a briliant piece of design. Not only does it look good, it's also incredibly user-friendly.
To hang your coat, you simply unfold hooks as you need them and then flatten them when they're not in use. The many different levels also make it completely child-friendly too!
23. ColoredSHAPE lamp
If you live in a small space, then this brilliant flat lamp from Florence- based designer Sabrina Fossi (opens in new tab) is just what you need. The plastic piece mimics the shape of a classic lampshade and makes the bulb itself the focal point of the entire piece.
"The shape of this table lamp is born from the idea to reduce the space occupied by the object,” says Fossi. Not only do we appreciate the design but we love the humour element too.
24. Bike storage
We really like this clever item from Berlin-based studio Mikili (opens in new tab). Specialising in bicycle furniture, the team designed this brilliant item that doubles as bike rack and bookshelf.
To be honest, it's seems more a way of displaying your two-wheeled vehicle as a centre piece than an actual bike rack. But it does the job in style. And means no more muddy carpets!
25. Big Hands clock
This minimalistic wall clock by designer Yenwen Tseng (opens in new tab) was created with the intention of exploring the perception of time.
The two sets of hands on the clock interact inseparably and show various expressions of time at every moment. It's a simple but effective design, which not only tells the time but doubles as a moving sculpture. Just beautiful.
26. Pop-up lamp
The world of flat-packed design has never been so cool! Check out this new lamp by French studio Well Well Designers (opens in new tab), which comes delivered in an envelope.
Constructed from a piece of paper, lined with polyphane, the Pop-up lamp is intended for corners. As its designers explain on their website: "It cleverly takes advantage of a space often unexploited in design."
27. Cradle chair
We're pretty sure that a couple of minutes rocking in this bad boy would send us to sleep!
Designer Richard Clarkson (opens in new tab) developed this beautiful cradle chair in collaboration with Grace Emmanual, Brodie Campbell, Jeremy Broker, Eamon Moore, Kahlivia Russell and Joya Boerrigter. The concept came about after the team took the idea of some adults always bearing a child side within to another level. Yeah, we want one.
28. Mood rocking bed
Continuing the rocking theme from the above cradle chair, we also came across this cool bed by Joe Manus from modern, eco-friendly furnishing company Shiner International (opens in new tab).
Designed to inspire tranquility and comfort, at first we wondered whether this might make you feel a bit sea-sick. But the unit can be made steady with the help of rubber stoppers, at a comfortable inclination for the user. And it looks amazing.
29. Pullout balcony
How about this for an outdoor space? For all those urban dwellers out there, check out this brilliant piece of design by Dutch architectural firm Hofman Dujardin (opens in new tab).
Named the Bloomframe, this innovative window transforms into a balcony at the click of a button and can be installed in a variety of buildings. Such a cool idea!
30. Book rack
Now for something a little different. Creators of this unique book rack Danish studio Agustav (opens in new tab) were certainly thinking outside the box when it came to this simple but brilliant design.
The idea is to attach books, via a small wooden plate, to one of the pins attached to a wooden rail. Using the plates, the height at which the book hangs can also being controlled. A unique and elegant idea.
31. This Stool Rocks
We can all fall victim to purchasing the usual, not-so-ready-to-assemble bland furniture. However, as creatives, it's understandable that we look for something with a little more character. Thankfully, the team at new tech company Fabsie (opens in new tab) have something up their sleeves.
Using the most innovative tools in design, production and distribution, Fabsie turns the furniture industry on its head. Setting up their first project 'This Stool Rocks (opens in new tab)' on Kickstarter (opens in new tab), the company use technology and great design to create a natural evolution in furniture making.
If like us, you love to curl up with a good book or your sketchpad after a long day's hard work, then this soft furnishing design from Kumeko (opens in new tab) could be your dream seat!
Created by the Prague-based furniture designers, Snug is a piece of soft furnishing designed with the intention of creating a comfortable and flexible item for relaxing in.
33. Lasso wardrobe
Every day items can often provide the ultimate inspiration. German designer Kai Linke (opens in new tab) has crafted these incredible designs that put a whole new light on every day furniture designs.
The limited edition piece entitled 'Catching the Wild' was designed in conjunction with Johannes Hemann (opens in new tab). Crafted from steel and polyester, it's a truly inspiring piece.
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Have you seen any cool examples of furniture design? Share them with us in the comments box below...