Architecture Awards 2020

40 2020 Architecture Awards BUILD uses cantilevers to ensure a robust design that effortlessly and seamlessly folds away, all while ensuring that laundry is kept far enough apart to dry. It’s a touch that few would consider in the initial design process, but for Jim, seemed an essential element in ensuring the success of his product. “The Dryer is the second highest consumer of energy of appliances in the home behind the refrigerator.” And Jim has certainly seen success on the back of his idea, with client testimonials acting as a powerful driver towards ongoing growth. However, for the time being, the company’s aim is focused on broadening connections in new markets, and - more specifically – in distribution. Jim is certainly aware that his product might need a few tweaks to enter the European market, after all, space is precious over here and in short supply. A drying rack – though unsightly – is a temporary thing, and a touch more palatable because of it. Yet, DryAway™ almost sells itself in that regard. It’s a space saver. It’s fit for purpose. It’s designed for you. It’s sustainably produced. It doesn’t use electricity and, above all else, we’re always going to need to dry clothes - Why not invest in a dedicated space for it? It’s not hard to imagine that these are the first tentative steps into a new paradigm. DryAway™ has all the markings of a ubiquitous product. It’s simple, easy to use, and meets a prevalent need. I can’t help but imagine that Jim’s design will be found in residences all over the world, given time. It seems almost an inevitability. Did you know: In the US alone Gas and Electric Dryers cause more than 12,000 residential fires annually. Company: DryAway by Jilidoni Designs Owner: Jim Lutz Website: Jul20643 “The Smarter Way to Dry Your Clothes” Space. It’s something we often take for granted yet we dedicate large amounts of time and resources to preserving it. To hide things away, to put as much of the inner workings – the mundane day to day – behind a curtain to preserve a sort of spotless version of ourselves. When it comes to our homes, functionality and form are almost one and the same. Everything needs to serve a purpose; everything needs its place. Perhaps the best way to address this point is to give an example: think of the garbage can. It’s considered unsightly and can muddy the image of a well-thought out kitchen. Today, garbage cans are hidden away in cupboards, corners or under counters. It’s considered an anomaly in new builds to not accommodate a space for garbage and waste. Moreover, there are entire industries built up around smart waste solutions for residences. So, in a design where everything has its dedicated space, away from visiting eyes, it seems odd then that there hasn’t been a solution to the prevalent issue (and notorious space clutter-er) of the drying rack. Indeed, while the UK has airing cupboards, they are seen as rather antiquated and missing entirely from newer builds: long considered a relic of the past. In the US, while electrical dryers are more widely used, they don’t eradicate the issue of the humble drying rack entirely. Not to mention, they’re not exactly energy efficient. Enter DryAway™. Sustainably made from Bamboo and innovatively designed, DryAway™ aims to be a smart solution to the incessant clutter of the rack and the cost of the electric dryer. “I’ve always had a problem with drying laundry,” Jim explains. “There are few products available and most are similar to the accordion style which are cumbersome, fragile and get in the way.” When Jim and his family built a new home two decades ago, he integrated the very first prototype of what would become DryAway™ into the design – which, crucially, the family still uses to this day. “It was important for us to avoid heat damage to our clothes and save energy costs. But, we also needed it close to the washer for ease of use and, of course, it needed to be out of sight.” Whilst Jim has grown his company through an innovative idea, it would be remiss to bypass the sheer ingenuity of its design – something which Jim calls his secret sauce, albeit one that might be easily missed by any prospective buyer. DryAway™ Best Residential Laundry-Drying Solution: DryAway™ “Out of Sight and Out of the Way” Why is it that the simplest of ideas are the most revolutionary? It’s often the way that the simple day to day solutions are those that have the largest impact. Indeed, that’s very much the case for DryAway™ - an innovative space-saving product that looks to reinvent the chore of laundry. We spoke with inventor and founder Jim Lutz to find out more about DryAway™ and its creation.