I's all over. Next time someone declares something a design classic, unless it's in this, they're just wrong. So exhaustive is this hefty trio of tomes that it's very difficult to argue for anything else pre-2004 to go in.
Starting with a pair of scissors from 17th century China and finishing with the Lunar bathroom range, the book takes in all sorts of objects (excluding apparel) that have shaped our lives and those of previous generations. The big-hitters like Charles and Ray Eames, Jasper Morrison and Jonathan Ive are included, but it's the unsung everyday items that make this really complete. Things like the compact disc, the Post-It note, the Toblerone bar, a Pritt glue stick, and Clackers (the bola-style toy that was massively popular in the 1970s).
The meticulous attention to detail is hugely impressive, as are the books and their zig-zag carry-case, which are design objects in their own right. With 999 items inside, you can't help but think that Phaidon Design Classics takes 1000th spot for itself.
Phaidon Design Classics is available from Phaidon and Amazon.
More pictures from the book after the jump