Where there’s smoke…

19 Jul

You know that saying ‘Fashion before comfort’?  Well, I have been know to utter my own version…’Style before safety’.  Okay, not really.  But I do have to say one of my hugest pet peeves is a smoke alarm.  They are ugly.  And I hate them.  The end.  I don’t want them on my walls.

Not only that, but for some reason, they go off at the most random moments.  I have been known to take out the batteries so I could cook something without setting them off.  (Not that all my cooking sets off the smoke alarms!)

That was all before I saw this post from Remodelista.  These are gorgeous and welcome anytime and anywhere in my home.


Rumor has it that industrial design-rock star Yves Behar is working on a design-worthy smoke alarm. In the meantime, we embarked on a search for attractive alternatives to the ubiquitous smoke alarm.

Kupu Photoelectric Smoke Alarm

Above: Kupu Photoelectric Smoke Alarm by Finnish designer Harri Koskinen for Jalo Helsinki has a soft fabric cover and is affixed to the wall or ceiling surface with 3M tape (no need for screws or a power drill). There are no tiny push buttons, rather the whole external casing acts as a press switch for silencing false alarms and testing the performance of the product. Battery powered (no hardwiring, which means it can be used in countries with different electric voltage); €24.90 at the Finnish Design Shop.

Above: Winner of the 2011 Red Dot Design Award, the Kupu Photoelectric Smoke Alarm is available in white, green, gray and pink.

Modern Smoke Detector

Above: Slated to come on the market in 2013, the Modern Smoke Detector by Architectural Devices is designed to lay recessed and nearly flush-mounted into the gypsum board of a wall or ceiling to blend in seamlessly. It runs on a 9-volt battery and can be linked to up to 12 other detectors. It will be retail for around $199. Contact Architectural Devices for further information.

Kidde Silhouette Low-Profile Smoke Alarm

Above: The Kidde Silhouette Low-Profile Smoke Alarm protrudes a mere half inch from the ceiling once installed. It contains a rechargeable battery that runs off central electricity and lasts the lifetime of the unit. Hardwiring required; $13.95 at Amazon.

Gira Smoke Alarm

Above: The Gira Smoke Alarm is an advanced heat and smoke detector that won the 2010 Red Dot award for product design; £40.01 for the battery operated unit through Gira UK. Not yet available in the US.

Chick-A-Dee Smoke Alarm

Above: Designed for a child’s room (and inspired by the American Black-capped Chickadee bird), the battery-operated Chick-A-Dee Smoke Alarm by Dutch designer Louise van der Veld is $75 in black or white at the A+R Store in Los Angeles.


4 Responses to “Where there’s smoke…”

  1. PJ August 4, 2012 at 9:03 pm #

    That Chick-A-Dee smoke detector is just amazing. I never even knew these existed, and that one in particular just has me so impressed. 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

  2. Dana@Mid2Mod July 19, 2012 at 5:14 pm #

    Those are so much nicer than traditional smoke alarms. I may have to check into the one available at Amazon.

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