A herbal doormat inspired by an ancient tradition of strewing herbs at the entrance to a home or over rushes that were used as floor coverings. As friends or strangers enter the house, they wipe their feet on the herbs, releasing essential oils that fragrance the surrounding air, help to stave off infection and keep bugs away.
This piece was conceived for the Voice of Things–an exhibition during London Design Festival 2015 curated by Sarah van Gameren and Philippe Malouin–which explored the subject of reproduction.
Participating designers were asked to find a person who could describe a functional object to them solely through spoken word. We could not see, touch, smell or taste the authentic object but were expected to recreate it according to the descriptions received. For the exhibition, the originals and their interpretations, were presented side by side.
The object my sister Annie Ridout—a writer and poet—chose was a coir door mat with the word ‘Welcome’ printed onto it. Her description was; “Welcome: A bristled rectangle activated by friction”.