Home & Building, Volume 12 Number 6 (June-July 1950)
Attention to appearance is an important part of industrial design. This, of course, has long been realised in the decorative-art industries where salability is directly affected by style—industries making furniture and fabrics, pottery and silverware, for example; what is more novel is the realisation that appearance is important also in such workaday products as kitchen and bathroom and office equipment, rnachine tools and precision instruments.
I must emphasise, however, that really satisfactory appearance cannot be achieved by fitting a showy "streamlined" sheet-metal covering over a badly designed mechanism. Good industrial design, like good architecture, begins at the inside and works outwards: it is concerned with more than "the looks of the thing"; indeed, if it were not, the looks would seldom be as good as they might be.
To the sceptical manufacturer who is still doubtful whether thought for design will add one cubit to his stature or one penny to his balance sheet, it may be pointed out that, in favourable circumstances, better design can effect: reduction in costs;' simplification of production; reduction in weight and/or size; in creased convenience in use; and right application of new materials—all of which tend to increase the manufacturer's sales and his prestige.