hulger: baby plumen 001  nicolas roope interview hulger: baby plumen 001  nicolas roope interview
sep 07, 2012

hulger: baby plumen 001 nicolas roope interview

the original plumen 001 bulb (left) besides the new baby plumen 001 (right)



following the success of the the original plumen bulb, hulger have released the baby plumen 001. designboom spoke to nicolas roope to find out more about the new smaller bulb.



DB: what was the biggest lesson you learned from the plumen 001 ‘project’?
NR: plumen 001 taught us so much on all fronts, from the ins and outs of high volume production line development to better understanding the role of imagery in inspiring sales. I think though, overall the biggest lesson is about speed. when we were in the oversized phone brand a few years ago we did too much, too quickly. it stretched every seam of the company and forced us to lose the necessary focus needed to get the most out of the concept we’d created. with plumen 001 we wanted to just leave it in the market, untouched for a good stretch to really let it bed in. it’s really easy to get caught up in constantly releasing new things to fuel buzz, but it catches up with you pretty quickly if you can’t support the range effectively. but more than that, when you create something so new, it just takes a while for the world to assimilate it and for people to understand where it might fit into their lives. so two years on we’re launching the baby plumen 001 and have some other releases  in the pipeline. but two years on, new people are discovering the original every day.



the new baby plumen 001



what are the reasons for doing a smaller version of the plumen bulb?
we’d always intended the plumen 001 to be a family, not just a single product. once we’d established the form it was clear it would work really well at different scales. we consciously launched at a larger format so it would be more striking and attention grabbing, but for many customers the larger version is harder to place because it’s so out of sync with the scale of incandescent bulbs and the shades and accessories associated with them. the very creative and determined have made them work brilliantly, but the baby version will be a lot easier to make work, particularly in a home environment. being much more compact, it works really well with a huge new range of shades and accessories that were previously too small.



baby plumen 001 in work lamp by design house stockholm



are there any specific goals or hopes you have for the new product(s) that you feel you didn’t achieve with the first bulb?
beyond the size difference both are more or less identical so there are no new feature or performance stories to tell. the important thing for me is that original plumen 001 has some company at last. maybe that sounds a bit flippant but I think it’s important. because the original stands out so much in its category, I feel sometimes that it’s lonely and a bit of an outcast. having another member of the family will both warm things up on store shelves but also in environments where the large and small can echo one another in the space, creating charming and interesting harmonies.



the original plumen (left) compared to the baby plumen (right) using the same shade



have you considered exploring other lighting technology besides the compact fluorescent bulb?
absolutely. we’re currently developing a number of led concepts but they’re still at early design phases. we’re also still going to look at cfls but with a very fresh perspective. the economics as well as performance and application of all these different technologies is a bit of a quagmire so we’re trying the chart our course carefully so we can really build on the momentum we have and not get distracted.



baby plumen 001



with handsets and light-bulbs successfully re-imagined, what’s next for hulger?
for now we’re going to keep really focused on lighting because strong concepts are emerging that we’d like to see through properly. these could lead to comprehensive product families and supporting those across our global markets is going to take a lot of effort and focus. it’s not hulger’s intention to broaden the portfolio for the sake of it. we’re only really motivated by the ideas we simply have to do (we have no choice because they’re too good to pass by). so until a new direction reveals itself to us, we’ll stay on the same trajectory. by only chasing the things that really excite us we have the best chances of exciting others with our products and the best chance of staying motivated and committed to the hulger project.



the original plumen (left) compared to the baby plumen (right) using the same shade


the baby plumen 001 works like any other high quality low energy bulb, saving you 80% on your energy bills and lasting 8 times longer than a standard incandescent bulb. more information on the new baby plumen can be found here.

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