There are certain things that we all need in our lives that are pretty mundane. One of those is a kettle. We ALL, without exception, need a kettle in the kitchen, if only to boil the water for the morning coffee, or tea if that is your preference. OK, perhaps the late, lamented, Peter Cook, of the Peter Cook and Dudley Moore duo, would have preferred a large shot of vodka, but for most of us it’s coffee or tea. Thinking about it, he probably did manage without a kettle.
There are several other mundane things too, like somewhere in the hall to hang your coat as you come into the house. And somewhere to put the umbrella when it has been pouring with rain and you don’t want water all over the floor, so you need an umbrella stand as well.
Coat hooks and umbrella stands can be a real nuisance because they can get in the way and they usually don’t look very pretty either, which is not the way you want to appear to your guests when you invite them round for dinner and the hall is the first thing they see – obviously.
Take coat hooks. They are just – usually – iron hooks that you get from the ironmongers and screw on the wall so that they can perform their duty. Purely practical. But they look pretty dreadful. The same thing goes for the umbrella stands that you can find in most stores: just practical, but with no thought of design either.
Well the good news is that one company has thought about design when it comes to coat hooks and umbrella stands and other similar necessities that really only have a practical purpose, and that company is Umbra, the Toronto based company that has been at the forefront of modern design for over 30 years. They produce – among many other things – the Umbra flip coat hook. This takes things to the next dimension.
You don’t want a hook that sticks out from the wall, so the Umbra coat hook doesn’t. Well not until you use it. It has a long wooden body with a curved front made from lacquered wood with five brush plated hooks that sit flush with the body until you need to hang a coat. Then you just flip down a hook and hang your coat on it. When you go out, you flip the hook up again out of the way and you just have a fairly decorative item on the wall. Pure genius!