Many are familiar with the art of glass blowing; have you ever been to Venice? One of the typical local attractions are the traditional glass-blowing workshops where skilled craftsmen have been perfecting this art, passed on in their families for generations. However, it’s about time we broaden our horizons, as Venice is really not the center of the world anymore, even when it comes to the much-honored tradition of blowing glass into a work of art. Ever heard about SkLO? It’s a company whose creative heart is based in the Golden State, California, but whose expert manufacturers are in Czech Republic, in Europe. Are you intrigued by the couple of creations we have shown you so far? Then check out the rest of the article!
SkLO is a young and dynamic company that clearly knows how to do things right: founded not even ten years ago, in 2009, SkLO has already fully proven they fill up a gap in the interior design market: SkLO US sells their products all over the Americas, while SkLO EU serves four continents -- Europe, Asia, Africa and Oceania. The minds behind this company are Karen Gilbert and Paul Pavlak; husband and wife, the two designers decided to bring together her intuitive understanding of craft and making -- she’s a jeweller, a metalsmith and a craft artist, with his technical expertise and attention to detail. So far, SkLO has developed three collections: one is SkLO:LIT, which, as the name suggests, deals with lighting solutions. SkLO:OBJECT, instead, includes a wide range of decorative items (such as colorful vases and glasses, but also mere decorations), while SkLO:PROJECT deals with custom, bespoke projects and designs.
We are going to focus on SkLO’s lighting solutions, which belong to SkLO:LIT, their lighting collection. Glass-blown objects are born from a raw, crude, almost primitive process: after all, fire is the artist here, and fire is one of the most primal and elemental natural forces. As you probably already know, no two glass-blown objects are completely alike: of course, the artisan shapes the object in a certain way, but eventually, there will always be differences, bigger and smaller. This impossibility of creating two pieces exactly alike is what makes glass blowing an art, and glass-blown objects unique; Czech Republic has a long tradition of working glass into mesmerizing art pieces, and that is why the manufacturing process needs to happen here.
The focus of SkLO
But what do designers and craftsmen at SkLO choose to focus on? Well, people at SkLO choose to focus on the crafting process as a whole, rather than on obtaining a perfect, flawless final object. When we think of glass-blown creations, our mind goes to those magnificent, over-the-top Venetian chandeliers; well, SkLO chooses to go in the opposite direction. SkLO decides to embrace the process with all its uncertainties. In the world of interior design today, we’re seeing a growing appreciation for all those imperfections that make something unique, and that is lucky for SkLO, as it’s perfectly in line with their beliefs. Each design is essential, subtle, honest: we look at it, and we can see everything that went on during the process to craft it.
We won’t lie, we do have a few favorites we’d do anything to own! One of them is the simply beautiful (which other words to use?) table and/or floor lamp Float. There are a few reasons why Float won our hearts over. First of all, the way it manages to look striking even with an extremely basic, simple and transparent design. Secondly, we love how two almost opposite materials, that is, glass and brass, were combined together in an organic creation. Finally, Float takes us back to our childhood. Remember when you used to blow soap bubbles, as a kid? Well, Float does resemble a giant soap bubble that’s been blown away by the wind and that has casually come to rest on our floor.
Another favorite of ours is, without any doubt, the SkLO Kin light. The main feature of this conical lamp is the milky opacity of the glass at the base, which gradually dissolves and leaves the glass transparent once again. Needless to say, this characteristic is what makes the kin light so special and unique: as if a mysterious white mist were perpetually inhabiting the insides of this essential yet stunning glass cone. Another feature we really appreciate are its dimensions: this lamp comes in two sizes, both of which are still large enough to let the onlooker appreciate all the complexity and the mystery of its mesmerizing, milky frozen steam.
One last? Well, we’d have to say the Drape Skirt 15 chandelier. We love it because again, it brings together brass and glass, furthermore creating an unusual combination with the black cord from which each light bulb is hanging. The informality of this display makes this chandelier an excellent addition to an industrial-chic loft; at the same time, the Drape Skirt chandelier can also be a perfect centerpiece hanging over the dinner table inside a refined dining room, thanks to the simple perfection of the white bulbs and the golden tint of the brass bar and sockets.
Did we manage to entice you? Would you like to learn more about SkLO? Then click here!