January 9, 2007

Sweet Juniper Butter Knife For Kids By Alfredo Haberli, $150


Swiss designer Alfredo Haberli created Kid's Stuff, a complete dinnerware service for kids, for the Finnish dish company Iittala [that's two i's, two t's, btw] in 2003. It's thought through to the smallest details, to like making sure the forks don't slide down onto the plate, to help kids really learn how to dine. As he writes on his website,

I hope that one day an adult comes to me and says: "Your Kids'Stuff Set is one of my favourite childhood memories." But that only shows how important this project was to me.
It has a glass glass, porcelain bowl & plate and stainless knife, spoons & fork [a soup spoon but no salad fork? very Finnish.] There's also a tray, and a cutting board made of birch--and that butter knife, of course, made of sweet, sweet Nordic juniper.

In an interview in I.D. in 2005, Haeberli [their spelling. he has an umlaut over the a] told Nico Schweizer [yes, the Momoll guy. Turns out everyone in Zurich does know each other, so go ahead and ask the next time you meet one.] that Kid's Stuff was his favorite product:

With Kid's Stuff, I didn't want to give kids a plastic cup. I wanted to teach them to use a glass--because they can. I helped them feel more secure by consciously designing the glass iwth a weight and size they can handle. It's very important that they don't get frustrated.
When Schweizer asked about high production values vs. affordability, and mentioned that Kid's Stuff sells for $150 in the US, Haeberli reminded him that they're not mass-produced, but only made in small batches:
Yes, it bothers me, but I sometimes fall in love with an idea and have a hard time letting it go. For Kid's Stuff, I absolutely wanted to add the plastic tray and wooden knife.
So there you have it: Professor Haeberli, in the dining room, with the sweet juniper butter knife.

Kid's Stuff for Iittala
Buy Alfredo Haberli's Kid's Stuff dinner service for Iittala at Moss, $150 [mossonline.com]
On the other hand, Scandinavian Details in San Francisco has Kid's Stuff for just $70, --in-store only. [stepup.com]
Interview with ID, June 2005, pdf [alfredo-haeberli.com]


I'm sure it will just sit collecting dust with the momoll kitchen set we just ordered.

[next to your marcel dzama ghost light, i'm sure. congratulations, btw, on totally taking over my mindshare on the word 'juniper' -ed]

Ah, I thought for sure you were just taunting me out of revenge for this .

[au contraire, you basically described our life, too. Minus the $700 doll house, of course. that's just crazytalk. -ed.]

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