Concrete may have infiltrated homes in the form of industrial countertops and floors, but Pretoria-based 20 Eight bring this hardy material to the details with a range of contemporary bowls, jewellery and lighting. The inspiration behind 20 Eight comes from the architectural backgrounds of the founding partners, Handre de la Rey and Inge de Beer. ‘We have always looked at materials and objects used in the construction industry and wondered how to manipulate the material properties to push the materials to new limits,’ says De Beer. The result of this material curiosity is 20 Eight’s concrete range. ‘This is the first material, of many still to come, which we wish to fully understand and develop into a wearable and usable form,’ explains De Beer. ‘This first range consists of bowls and plates, a pendant light and jewellery pieces.’ While the material is the most striking featuring of 20 Eight’s designs, the ergonomics of each handmade and sculpted piece also plays a major role in the design development. ‘Materiality and texture is critical in our designs as we are driven by the visual and tactile as a complete experience,’ says De Beer. ‘This is the drive behind pushing the boundaries of the materials’ properties as to discover new uses and combinations finally culminating in a passionately designed piece.’ When asked what a 20 Eight product will add to an interior, De Beer replies: ‘Displaying a 20 Eight piece in your home provides a focus point. No longer just another bowl or light to fill a gap but a product promoting the contemporary qualities of design. We believe merging inspired design ideas and local materials leads to a beautiful collaboration suitable for any passionate design lover.’ While 20 Eight continue to create ‘inspired design ideas’ and have developed a soon-to-be launched range of furniture pieces in wood and concrete, they also want the brand to become a platform to ‘help,’ as De Beer says, ‘struggling design students with big dreams’. 20 Eight is available exclusively through Africandy.com. For more information visit 20eight.co.za.