The Mercedes-Benz Design Award by Broadsheet is back. This year we’re partnering with Tait, a locally-made, premium outdoor furniture-maker, to present the award to the designer of an object or item that enhances the experience of dining outdoors.

Entries are open to every Australian, and submissions can include anything from tables to chairs, benches to barbecues, pots to firepits, so long as the end product can be retailed for no more than $2000.

The judging panel will consist of Tait managing director Gordon Tait and creative director Susan Tait; a Mercedes-Benz Australia representative; and Broadsheet founder, Nick Shelton. Each judge will be looking for a piece that represents design excellence.

Entries will be judged on innovation, creative design and the feasibility of the concept. The design should demonstrate both form and function. It must be aesthetically beautiful and serve its purpose as a durable, long-lasting piece. It should engage with its surroundings and add value to the outdoor dining experience. It should address a particular need in this area.

“We’re looking for interesting thinking; simple but clever designs,” says Gordon Tait. “Often young designers try to be too clever, but it’s not always necessary.”

While creativity is highly encouraged, applicants should make the design as clear as possible and create a piece that can be prototyped within four weeks.

“We know that designing a practical and innovative object that can be produced at an affordable cost is a big task,” says Mercedes-Benz Australia spokesperson David McCarthy. “The winner will have to be best in class for innovation and affordability.”

Entering the competition is as simple as submitting a clearly annotated drawing, sketch, 3D rendering or other visual representation of your design along with a 100-word description.

Entries must be submitted digitally in a file no larger than 5MB and no longer than three pages.

The winner will receive mentoring from the Tait design team to take the design from the prototype stage through to being manufactured as part of Tait’s product range for a limited time.

Update: The Lily Tray Table is now available to purchase from Tait showrooms and online

This article presented in partnership with the Mercedes-Benz Design Award by Broadsheet.