Panasonic seems to have been inspired by the lyrics on Huey Lewis and the News when they sang “It’s hip to be a square,” in their 1986 hit.
Or maybe it was something more hi-brow like the early 20th century avant-garde art movement pioneered by Pablo Picasso that has got the creative juices of Panasonic’s inventors flowing.
But, whatever the inspiration, we like the set of new appliances the Japanese electronics manufacturer has just released for the kitchen.
While the little appliances are often overlooked in favour of their bigger cousins, the kettle, toaster and coffee maker can, in fact, make a huge difference to the aesthetic appeal of the kitchen.
All designed in strong cubic shapes, Panasonic’s new offerings offer something a little different to the norm as, let’s face it, we were in danger of being left with only two choices when it comes to small appliances – stainless steel or colourful retro.
While Panasonic’s new designs still have a retro feel, they come with a decidedly modern twist.
The new toaster is a new take on the familiar rectangle, introducing gently curved corners to give it appeal. As it can be difficult to fit your bagels in a regular toaster, it comes with a function suitable for different bread slice sizes and a warming rack that you can use for your morning croissants.
Now we can’t start the day off without a cup of coffee and this kettle affirms its status as one of the modern kitchen’s most essential tools. There’s a glass water level window, so you can watch to see if your water is bubbling – although they do say a “watched pot never boils”. And it sits on a rotating base so you can fit it snuggly against a wall or in an awkward corner if you have a small kitchen.
With a handsome shape, the coffee maker is tapping in to the desire among consumers for quality filter coffee. It makes your cuppa in a quick efficient way, in three easy steps, and you can also use it for brewing a nice cup of tea.
While the appliances may come in a fetching purple shade, as well as grey for purists, Zeena Hill who is Panasonic’s Home Appliances UK marketing manager, said: “Beware shrinking violets.
These products are big hitters in design terms. They have their own presence and personality and are aimed at an already design savvy consumer who is looking for the Next Big Thing.”
The new designs have already proved a hit among tech bloggers. Girlabouttech says: “The distinctive mix of curves and straight edges really marks them apart from the rest of the tea and toast brigade.
My only downer is the capacity of the kettle might be smaller than I’m used to, at 1.4 litres as opposed to 1.7 but then I suppose we shouldn’t be boiling more water than we need these days.”
A Panasonic spokesman added: “Recognizing that the kitchen is often the creative hub and pulse of the modern home, the clean, contemporary lines of the new Panasonic collection is a response to a desire for enigmatic and intelligent design that will complement different kitchen styles, without compromising functionality.”