Making the Mundane Magical

Amsterdam, the Netherlands | 28 Sep 2020

Fantastic designers can transform everyday objects into breathtaking works of art and create innovative and provocative pieces from humble roots. Making the mundane magical is what pioneers in the design world do. 

The ability to draw inspiration from everyday objects separates the real visionaries from the rest of the pack. We’ve been fortunate enough to have incredible creators submit work to Indigo Design Award, and compiled a list of our favorites.

BridgeWorks Generational Playing Cards 

BridgeWorks Generational Playing Cards were honored in our 2018 competition because of their whimsical flair and creativity. Elevating the humble playing card with historical depictions, pop culture references, and multi-generational nostalgia, BridgeWorks Generational Playing Cards took a mundane item more prized for its functionality than beauty and elevated it substantially. 

Urban Cuisine Cooking Spray 

It takes a unique mind to glow up a regular boring cooking spray into a funky and fierce can of spray paint, but that’s exactly what Ian Wallace did for Urban Cuisine. This edgy company plays with the concept of street food, reimagined for your kitchen, so the design is perfectly on-brand. We were lucky enough to experience the sheer genius of Ian Wallace during our 2020 competition, and are sure that anyone would want to feature this unique product anywhere in their kitchen.

Padcle Waste 

It’s a sad reality that our planet is changing in alarming and unprecedented ways, and one of the biggest contributors is human waste products. Enter Padecle Waste by Ming Chi University of Technology alum Hu Hui-Ping., This design wowed us in 2019 with its innovative takeaway containers that are actually made out of a very smart and biodegradable material: rice husk. Not only did Padecle transform the typical carryout container with their new design, but they also included compartments, creative design, and even utensils.

The Dental Market Brand Identity 

When design house Test Monki was tasked with coming up with a brand new design for their client The Dental Market, they went way outside of the box with a minimalistic design that made the humble toothpaste tube a true work of art. Test Monki’s white, grey, and teal label caught our attention in 2018, and we were enchanted by its fresh design and sophistication.



The makeup world is famous for being over-the-top, which is why it’s so refreshing and impactful to see Effy going in the opposite direction. Effy is a natural makeup brand, and they wanted their look to reflect their company philosophy, so Kazuha Otake of the Pratt Institute did just that with this 2019 Indigo Design Winner. With distinct minimalist packaging and creative containers, Otake’s work is seriously reminiscent of naturally-occurring rock formations. Not only that, but the ingredients are printed out on an accompanying paper, showing that they are all natural and suitable even for sensitive skin. Effy gets the nod by going in a completely different direction and making it work. Their makeup is absolutely a work of art.  

True artists excel in making the mundane magical. If you need an inspirational boost, why not think outside the box to items that others have forgotten? The results could surprise and delight you, as well as light a fresh fire to fuel your imaginative designs. Check out all of our past winners here.

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