Products by Afteroom
“We hope that…people will use our designs as practical, elegant objects that are a graceful accompaniment to life.”
Afteroom is the creation of the wife-and-husband design team Chen-Yen Wei and Hung-Ming Chen. Founded in 2011, Afteroom has a deceptively simple goal: create items people won’t discard. Going timeless rather than trendy, the duo aims to produce understated pieces with character.
“The main idea behind Afteroom is to be an advocate of the traces of time. All our designs share the spirit of this thought.”
Wei grew up in Taipei City, Taiwan, the daughter of insurance clerks. With the family based in a crowded city, her parents “tried their best to give us more contact with nature,” she says, “and I’ve appreciated beautiful things ever since.” Wei graduated from National Taipei College of Business, but her real love was fashion design. An early job as an assistant fashion designer honed her aesthetic and colour senses.
Chen was raised in Taichung City, Taiwan, an industrial area where his parents still run their small factory producing guitar components. Always fascinated by how things are made, he studied electrical engineering in high school; unenthused, he switched to industrial design. After working in electronics for a short time designing monitors, mobile phones and keyboards, Chen realised, “Once we design a cell phone, it’s going to disappear within two or three years. You will never see it again.” He quickly shifted his focus to furniture, where “the lifespan is much, much longer. If you make a good chair, it will last forever.”
Chen and Wei have called Stockholm home since 2006, where Chen pursued a master’s degree in design at Konstfack University College of Arts, Crafts and Design. Despite initially not planning to stay in Stockholm, they founded Afteroom there in 2011. The name “Afteroom” was chosen to represent their fascination with the transformation of a space over time – more specifically, what happens to someone’s experience of a room after a beautifully designed object is introduced to it.
“Both of us love timeless things. The notion of placing memories, emotions and thoughtful simplicity in an object is really romantic.”
When working together, Wei and Chen first discuss ideas. Then, Chen draws sketches and designs 3D models, after which Wei takes over as art director, picking colours and finishes and ultimately determining which projects are a good fit to undertake. Both designers agree it’s Wei’s sensibilities that determine their artistic direction.