Chilling in the sun: Note Design Studio’s Sine outdoor chairs invite you to relax

Designed by Swedish Note Design Studio, the Sine outdoor furniture combines practicality and elegant colors with stylish yet casual design. Design Stories visited Note Design Studio in Stockholm – read our exclusive interview and check out the new Sine furniture!

Malin Engvall and Johannes Karlström of Note Design Studio.
Malin Engvall and Johannes Karlström of Note Design Studio and the Sine lounge chair, designed for NINE.

AFTER SITTING DOWN in a Sine outdoor chair, you cannot help but start gently rocking back and forth, as the fun-colored steel chair has a nice bounce to it. The chair is so comfortable that you could just forget that you have a busy schedule and sit in the sun for the rest of the day.

The Sine outdoor furniture was designed by Swedish Note Design Studio, which is one of the most interesting design studios in Scandinavia.

“We recently tested the chairs at a five-hour dinner party, and they were really comfortable to sit in even for a longer period of time,” says interior architect Johannes Karlström, one of Note Design Studio’s founders.

The company’s office is located in Södermalm, Stockholm. The stylish premises, renovated in an old bank, offer workspaces for the company’s team of around 15 persons. The showroom is decorated with furniture created in previous design projects. At the moment, there is colorful furniture from the brand-new Sine collection stacked against the wall.

The office of Note Design Studio in Stockholm.
Note Design Studio’s office is located in an old bank. The armchairs with tubular legs (in the front) are designed for Lammhults, whereas the Remnant armchair is from Sancal’s collection.
Two images of Note Design Studio office exterior.
Note Design Studio is known for its multi-disciplinary work. Their clients include &Tradition, Audo Copenhagen, Fogia and Skagerak, among others.
Interior architect Johannes Karlström of Note Design Studio.
Interior architect Johannes Karlström is one of Note Design Studio’s founding partners.

ESTABLISHED IN 2008, Note Design Studio is known as a multi-disciplinary design studio with a multi-talented team that designs not only furniture but also buildings, interiors and everyday items in addition to providing graphic design, conceptualization and strategies. Working on such varied and demanding projects is not, however, all that common for a small design studio.

“Right from the start, Note’s team has included designers from different fields. It’s immensely inspiring for us to work on design projects where the object and scale can vary from a watch to a renovation of a 10,000-square-meter office building. We think – perhaps a little naively – that creativity can help us solve any design problem, which is precisely what has led us to so many interesting projects,” says Johannes.

“We think that creativity can help us solve any design problem, which is precisely what has led us to so many interesting projects.”

“We form a multi-disciplinary team for each project. In addition to furniture designers, this outdoor-furniture project also involved an architect who was able to look at the furniture from a different perspective. At our company, people can end up in a design project the field of which is completely different from their area of expertise. We think that people have potential for all kinds of things,” explains product designer Malin Engvall.

Sine lounge chair on a street
In an urban environment, the energetic yellow tone of the Sine lounge chair really stands out.
Two images of the Sine outdoor collection.
The same curved shapes are repeated in the legs of the tables and chairs. The Sine stool also serves as a side table.
Product designer Malin Engvall of Note Design Studio.
Malin Engvall works as a product designer at Note Design Studio. She was involved in designing the Sine outdoor furniture collection for NINE.

IN 2023, a new design brand entered the furniture sector: NINE. Note Design Studio’s designers worked on NINE’s Sine outdoor furniture collection for over three years. In other words, the project started before the furniture brand had even been launched. How did that affect the design process?

“Perhaps the biggest difference was that there was no baggage from the past and we got to start the project with a clean slate. On the other hand, NINE provided us with a detailed and carefully prepared brief that served as the framework for designing the collection. It was both inspiring and challenging, as meeting all the wishes was no easy feat,” describes Johannes.

“We needed to create an outdoor furniture collection with a strong identity. At the same time, the furniture needed to be suitable for a variety of settings, as outdoor furniture is used in both lush gardens and deeply urban environments,” continues Malin.

Sketches and material samples
The design process for the Sine outdoor furniture took three years. The image shows material samples and sketches.
Malin Engvall and Johannes Karlström of Note Design Studio.
Malin and Johannes are pleased with the collaboration with NINE.
Material samples on a table
A mock-up of the chair for studying the detail where the seat is attached to the bent tubular frame. The seat drapes over the frame like fabric.
Yellow Sine lounge chair outside.
Sine is a modern, minimalist interpretation of traditional Swedish outdoor furniture.

Malin explains that the Sine chair is also a kind of modern, minimalist interpretation of traditional Swedish outdoor furniture. However, the design of the Sine series began with the idea of simplifying the form.

“First, there was the idea of a chair with a curved cantilever base made of a single piece. Usually, outdoor chairs have four legs, adding up to quite a large number of legs under the table. We, however, wanted to give the dining set a more austere look. The most difficult part was solving the problem of how to make the different parts form a uniform collection. The tables, benches and stools have similar curved shapes as the chairs but do not compete for attention with them,” describes Malin.

“Even if the Sine furniture gets slightly dented or scratched in use, it will not rust.”

Functionality is at the heart of every creation at Note. When designing outdoor furniture, there are, of course, specific characteristics that need to be considered – such as exposure to the elements and winter storage. 

“The choice of materials is really important for durability. The frame of the Sine furniture is made of stainless steel with a powder-coated surface. Even if the furniture gets slightly dented or scratched in use, it will not rust. In the case of outdoor furniture, it is also important to think about storage. The chairs are stackable, and the table legs are detachable, so storing them is easier,” says Malin.

Sine outdoor collection by NINE
The Sine collection consists of dining tables of various sizes, chairs, a bench, and an ottoman. Image: George Kroustallis.
Dark green Sine lounge chair and ottoman
Sine is available in three colors, the darkest of which is the muted olive green. The shade varies from green to brown and almost black depending on the light. Image: George Kroustallis.
Yellow Sine table, bench and chair by NINE
The tables and benches subtly echo the curved shapes of the Sine chairs. Image: George Kroustallis.

THE FRESH LOOK of the Sine furniture is completed by the elegant color palette. One of them is a deep olive green that has the interesting ability to also look almost black or brown depending on the light. The yellow stands out equally well in lush gardens and urban cafés and terraces, whereas the gray blends perfectly in a variety of environments.

“Colors are really important to us in each design project. In this project, we wanted to offer new options for outdoor furniture alongside the much-used colors of black, gray and white. We chose eloquent tones that, together with the curved shapes, give the metal outdoor furniture a cozy look,” explains Malin.

As it turns out, the soft curves also ended up giving the collection its name, as “Sine” refers to the shape of the mathematical sine wave.

Shop the Sine collection

Nine
Sine stool
Nine
Sine chair
Nine
Sine dining table
Nine
Sine lounge chair
Nine
Sine ottoman
Nine
Sine chair
Nine
Sine dining table
Nine
Sine bench

See also:

All designs by Note Design Studio >
All products by NINE >

Text: Anna-Kaisa Huusko Images: Niclas Mäkelä Production: Design Stories

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