How can we determine if the product is of high quality and if therefore we should buy it? It turns out that it is not so difficult after all. The top furniture manufacturers, who want to have a good position on the market, work incessantly to receive the highest awards, certificates and badges of quality. Those beautiful graphic signs are widely recognisable and eagerly presented next to the distinguished products. They say everything about their quality, technology, ergonomic features, appeal, and manufacturing process. The last feature – the manufacturing process – deserves particular attention, as it is most difficult to be awarded for it. The Blue Angel is the oldest certificate in the world. It is widely recognised, especially in Germany and in Western European countries. The Blue Angel is awarded especially for the method of processing raw materials and the production of goods that minimise the negative impact on the environment. Over 11,500. various products have been awarded this certificate so far.
The Blue Angel
The Blue Angel was introduced in 1978 as an idea of the German Ministry of Internal Affairs which was then approved by the Ministry of Environment. The criteria for awarding the certificate are defined separately for different product categories and the protection objective ( e.g. environmental protection, protection of consumers’ health, protection of water, climate, resources). This means that they often concentrate on some chosen aspects of a given method of raw material processing and production. „To live with the angel” means to live in a healthy way. It is hard to imagine a living room without upholstered furniture. However, some upholstered furniture may be a source of dangerous substances ( due to their large surface and long use ). Those dangerous substances may affect health and the environment. Their typical sources are glues, upholstery materials, and leathers. The Blue Angel for low emission furniture informs that the particular piece of furniture affects less the health and environment, from its production to its disposal (!), than a similar product without that sign.
Another widely recognised badge of quality that is awarded in one of the best known international design competitions is the reddot design award.
reddot design award
The competition has been held since 1955 in the Design Zentrum Nordrhein Westfalen in Essen. The award is given yearly for the products that stand out due to their innovative form, ergonomic shape, functionality, and the highest quality.
Another award for functionality, aesthetics and Green Design is the Good Design.
good design award
The Good Design is the oldest award – it has been bestowed since the 60s by the famous ”The Chicago Athenaeum : Museum of Architecture and Design” in cooperation with the European Centre for Architecture, Art, Design and Urban Studies. It is the most coveted award in the world of design.
Another very important diploma, considered one of the most important in the decor industry worldwide, is the Interior Innovation Award. It was established in 2002.
interior innovation award
The Interior Innovation Award is given for the most innovative products, from all the areas of the decor industry. It was initiated by Imm Cologne and Rat fuer Formgebung. It is a very important and effective instrument for brand positioning and distinguishing a product. The Interior Innovation Award is bestowed by the German Design Council in cooperation with the International Design Trade Imm Cologne.
Considering the increasing number of products and the growing competition, the design award is real value added. Der Designpreis der Bundesrepublik Deutschland (the Design Award of the Federal Republic of Germany) is considered by the media to be the most important award. It emphasizes the competencies of companies and designers. It is given by the German Design Council. It is very important, mostly on the German market.
Der Designpreis der Bundesrepublik Deutschland, is often called „the award of awards”. And there is a reason for it, since it sets the highest standards. Only the products that have already been awarded in domestic and foreign competitions can be nominated for the award. An additional criterion is the nomination from the Federal Ministry of Economy. This award has been bestowed yearly since 1969 for outstanding product design or to a person who contributes to the development of the economic life through their creations.
As you can see, we are able to verify the quality of a product that we are interested in and make the right choice. A clear graphic sign provides the most important information; it is a set of data on quality, aesthetic value, and functionality. Now we can perceive the objects surrounding us more consciously.