Recycling Sunlight for Modern Metropolises

All photos courtesy haberdashery.

As cities grow ever taller, parts of the ground level below become starved of light just like a rainforest floor. Helio Ray, haberdashery’s latest concept, aims to bring the sunshine back in metropolitan areas. The conceptual idea from the London-based design studio is engineered to redirect sunlight from above the skyline and bring it back down the side of buildings.

 

“Sunlight has a huge effect on our physiology and wellbeing,” explains Ben Rigby, co-founder and creative director. “It influences our circadian rhythms, provides vitamin D and illuminates our environment, bringing the true colour out of the surfaces, architecture and the urban grain. Our ambition was to create a focal point using sunlight in order to reinvigorate areas that had become disenfranchised from the life-affirming effects of the sunshine from way above.”

 

Mounted on the top of a tall building, Helio Ray is fuelled by light collected from a Heliostat, a mechanized mirrored surface that automatically tracks the sun and gathers it into a concentrated beam. It then abstracts this beam of light when reflecting off a second custom-designed reflector that sends the resulting shafts of light down the side of a building, creating “god ray” effects.

 

This slow variation in surface provides a slowly evolving pattern of reflected light, whilst perfectly controlling the extremities of the overall light effect so as to only fall on specified building surfaces. The effect comes and goes just like the real sun above, so is a true extension of the actual sun’s reach. It is visible from all surrounding buildings, providing a stunning, calming intervention in juxtaposition to the static, man-made urban grain of most cities.

 

The studio believes Helio Ray can bring a “sense of wonder and pride back into areas that had evolved into transient spaces lost in shadow, reinventing them as landmark destinations.” Such installations can also help hasten city planning by providing a quicker, less complicated path of incorporating infrastructure projects.

 

Alternatively, this concept further lends a hand toward haberdashery itself that explores the uses of light and how it can invoke a positive emotional response with the public.

Making an iconic design statement in a minimal aesthetic, the Dawn to Dusk lighting fixture is the newest product released by the award-winning London-based design studio haberdashery that invites you to experience the magic of sunrises and sunsets from right inside your home.

 

The intricate design was inspired by the “the memory of the sun” and creating a strong connection with this memory, according to Ben Rigby, creative director and co-founder of haberdashery.

 

“We want to reach beyond the industry’s current expectations for a lighting product and push for a more ambitious blend of quality, creativity and narrative-driven design all wrapped up in an iconic, useful and aesthetically beautiful design statement,” says Rigby.

 

To do this, Rigby and other designers chose to work with an uncomplicated design to demonstrate the clarity of a rising sun, as well as identified the perfect color range that would create a strong, emotional resonance.

 

Available as a table and floor-standing lamp, the diffused circular light source explores a palette of warm colour hues during its transit of the vertical stand, delivering these as direct light, or as a flood of light on a wall.

When at the base the sliding light head sits in an off position, and then as it is moved upwards it activates a low intensity red hue, which transitions into orange, then 2700k white light as slid upwards. This custom LED light array, developed by Rigby and his team, replicates the transition of light from the deep, rich red of the late evening to the white light of midday. The light is also capable of rotating 360 degrees around, providing a range of uses from outward facing task light through to a backward-facing ambient light, creating a subtle wash.

 

Dawn to Dusk is meant to not only showcase a naturally beautiful occurrence but to also utilize this power to support our natural rhythm throughout the day. The high-quality white light helps users to wake up more naturally, while the richer, relaxing red colors help regulate the circadian cycle and prepare for sleep.


“haberdashery believes light is a transformative power in the world; we challenge what is possible with light, and through our products are defining a new category of contemporary lighting,” says Rigby.

All photos & video courtesy haberdashery.

Whether it’s using bold colors or finding new ways to embrace the sunshine, here are a few tips to brighten your home in time for summer.

By Alyssa Gautieri

Add Pops of Color

 

Summer is the perfect time to bring bright colors into your home to create a fresh look. From throw pillows and cozy blankets to candles and vases, there are endless ways to bring new color into a space without a complete renovation. Sunny yellow, water’s edge blue and tropical pink are among the top shades of the summer, according to HGTV.

Swap Out Dark Curtains
Embracing natural light is important year-round, but it is especially important for homeowners in the summer. Natural sunlight creates a brighter and lighter feel, which parallels the ambiance of summer. Dark curtains trap natural light from entering a room, which can make a space feel dark and cold. Meanwhile sheer, bright-colored curtains help to bring the outdoors in.

This garden floral pillow from MacKenzie-Childs embodies summer with its cheerful colors — available at $295.

Freshen up your space with Safavieh’s Ivey’s hand-knotted rug, offered at $1,799.

Offered at $26,000, Jay Strongwater’s leaf and flower mirror can brighten any space.

Don’t Fear Floral 

 

Although floral patterns have been around forever, they never seem to go out of style. Whether hoping for a vintage feel or a modern look, bring personality into your home with new curtains, a rug or tablecloth. If you’re feeling bold, a floral chair or lampshade can completely transform a room. While floral prints may seem intimidating, Real Simple reminds us not to be afraid to mix floral with floral.

 

Get Creative with Mirrors

 

In addition to their obvious function, mirrors can help to prepare your home for summer. Using mirrors creatively in your home can help to capture light and project it into dark corners. Depending on the angle and placement, mirrors can create illusions to make a space feel bigger and brighter, according to Country Living.

Embrace Plant Life

 

Whether living or faux, greenery and flowers bring life into any space. Resembling the outdoors in the summer, the bright yet soothing greens, pinks and purples of plant life can bring a summer-like feeling into your home.

 

 

This hand-carved wood log filled with silk succulents and cactus, by T&C Floral Company and priced at $625, is the perfect addition to any living area.

Photos courtesy of Neiman Marcus

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