The Netherlands is a hotbed of smart, fresh design and nowhere more so than in the south, near the city of Eindhoven and its spectacular Design Academy Eindhoven. The graduate program at DAE routinely turns out brilliant industrial designers who combine simplicity and imagination to create objects you’ll feel you’ve just got to have.
Bring home Arche toys by DAE grad Floris Hovers. These model cars (and trucks, cranes, ambulances, taxis and tanks) are handmade using a bare minimum of industrial-looking metal parts, and then painted yellow, rust, red, mint, olive, white and black. Elegant in their simplicity, each toy is nostalgic, thoroughly modern and totally Dutch. Prices start at €105 (about $130) each, plus shipping. droog.com, www.florishovers.nl