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Tuesday 13 March 2012

Beautiful birds to save your life

"Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful" is a useful mantra from William Morris when deciding whether to chuck out that mysterious plastic gewgaw your aunt gave you or that pineapple slicer you bought from Lakeland in a moment of weakness. (You haven't bought a pineapple in years. Give it to Oxfam along with the strawberry huller and musical cake slice.)

But I want to go a step further: why can't things be useful AND beautiful? I want my functional objects to look pretty, dammit. And as a card-carrying Domestic Slut, if they can involve owls or other birds, so much the better.

The makers of the Chick-a-Dee smoke alarm clearly agree with me. They've designed a smoke detector disguised as a bird perching on a twig. Like the real life chickadee, it blasts out a noisy warning that will rouse you if your home is about to go up in flames (or, more likely, you've burned the toast). It meets all the proper safety standards, yet manages to be prettier than a boxy alarm.

At £34.99 from Firebox (or a little more if you buy direct from Chick-a-dee where you get more colourway choices) it's pricier than a standard smoke alarm. Worth it if it reminds you to test it once a week and change the batteries once a year? For me, certainly. Now, for their next trick, can they design a similarly stylish carbon monoxide alarm?


  1. Oh wow, rather like these... yeah, more stylish alarms would definitely remind you to have them around (and battery-ed!)


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