Design Journey: Dokter and Misses

dokter and misses

WORDS Michaela Stehr IMAGES courtesy of Dokter and Misses

Husband-and-wife design team Katy Taplin and Adriaan Hugo of Dokter and Misses have been on the map with their furniture pieces since 2007.


The Heartbeat lamp epitomises our first collection, Series A, which focused on strong, two-dimensional silhouettes. Adriaan began by drawing a scale version of the lamp in tape on the wall. Thereafter, the idea was to bring it into the third dimension, creating a series of line-drawing lighting sculptures, tables and our first graphically embellished cabinet.

2. HINGE UNIT (2011)

dokter and misses

We wanted to design a utilitarian piece that had the potential to become a staple in every home. The first Hinge unit launched in 2011, and remains one of our most popular products, largely due to its versatility and subtle detailing. What started out as a simple four-door cabinet with a unique door detail has been adapted to include taller versions, a lower TV unit, a bedside table and a freestanding kitchen unit fitted with a stone top.

3. LALA (2013)

Our inspiration for these pieces shifted away from Bauhaus and Scandinavian design to drawing on our local environments. The hand-painted versions draw inspiration from disparate sources: from two-tone taxis to painted Basotho homes, colour field painting and even mid-century Palm Springs. These cabinets are deliberately not mass-produced. They’re fun to make; each is different and an experimental composition and colour study, painted front, back and sides to be viewed from all angles – a true statement piece.

4. LOWVELD SOFA & BED (2018)

Reminiscent of rock-filled gabions, the Lowveld range’s linear, cage-like steel structure envelops block-like cushions. As with most of our work, there’s space for a certain degree of personalisation. The sofa presents endless options for colour and fabric combinations to play with, and the newest addition – the Lowveld bed – will be ready to roll in 2020.


Our first solo show with Southern Guild Gallery, “Practically Everywhere”, is a collection of sculptural cabinets inspired by the visual noise of urban ecosystems, and sought to convey a sense of entropy. The furniture features jagged shapes, odd proportions and stacked forms overlaid with gestural marks and textural surface treatments. Our aim was to communicate a feeling of oversaturation and of being surrounded; interacting with, consuming and pushing against everything, practically everywhere.

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