Industrial design grew out of the industrialized countries social changes which rised between the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century and it was a phenomenon linked more to economy than to creative expression and art; it certainly rose and proliferated during a great economic and industrial development, becoming a phenomenon clearly linked to consumption and production growth; it was then a factor which more or less contributed to this social change.

In some way design also grew up as a rejection toward industrial revolution's deep transformation as an effort to save craft activities and pre-industrial ideas. This was the principle of all movements from "Arts and Crafts" to "Bauhaus" school that all see with distrust at industrial progress causing the aesthetic deterioration of new everyday objects and the destruction of handmade creation's traditional forms, even if, in order to be an industrial design, the product has to be done in an industrial way, so that off the shelf objects are the heart of design history.

The most important theory about design's history traces its origin to the artistic 19th century English movement called "Arts and Crafts" that makes us attend to applied arts progress. The artistic-creative process purpose was everyday objects conception and production; this aim developed mainly thanks to modern production systems and modern materials which ensured the exit of the objects from small craft fields and the launch of an enlarged production which also allowed to enlarge the recipient public of the same objects.
The word "industrial design" came to life in the United States in 1940 and carried on along 20th century, a period in which production tools entwined with modern planning philosophies to create objects which should be aesthetically appealing, useful and constructive according to a typical rationalist logic.

At the end of first world war tendences and projectual movements suggesting artistic vanguards in ordinary life developed in entire Europe. As Italian Futurism said, it seemed to be possible a new invention of the whole universe built on a new, modern, future conception; this project became a human condition's changing instrument which identified in Bauhaus school the centre of this new general overview. In the school vanguard artists and designers were engaged in an educational and concretely practical experiment, so that the school's products deeply influenced the entire European culture of project. A real new objects' expressive language came to life encouraged above all by the use of new materials like steel, new metals and glass.

In the fascist Italy young rationalist artists expressed the same concept transforming the vanguard language into an instrument of the modernist battle in the occasion of the antidemocratic dictatorship battle.

In the second postwar period planning rationalist tendencies evolved, but always preserving the idea of a more and more enlarged consumption planning.


In locomotives rivets replaced nutcases causing one-fourth decrease of the structure weight.
Sewing machine was covered and put into an ergonomic container.

Design is also a way to add charm value to a product usually important just for its usage function, as for example mobile phone, computer, camera. etc...