Milan is quite famous for design. Every year there is the Salone del Mobile, a furniture fair where design is one of the main points of focus, especially at the side events (well, I must admit that during these side events alcohol is also a main focus, which is MAYBE one of the reasons why they are so popular even though the objects being displayed make no sense to most of us).
All around town, especially outside the city center, there are lots of small workshops created by designers specialized in jewellery, wood, homecraft and various items/materials. The main areas where you can find them is Isola, just behind Garibaldi metro station, and the Navigli. If you are in Milan for more than one day, they are definitely worth a visit. The rule is: the more hidden they are, the bigger the chance they’ll be interesting.
MV% Ceramics Design is the atelier and laboratory of Mariavera Chiari, a designer specialised in ceramics that is famous for its award winning coffee cup. You’ll be surprised by how many items can be created with ceramics (houseware, furniture, decorations, …). You can now buy them online too, but I always like to visit the artisans’ labs: the smells, colors, touch of the products is really worth an off-line experience.
P.S. As for all artisans’ labs, you might want to call ahead to be sure it’s open during opening times: beside Mondays, work often takes Mariavera outside the lab for new inspiration (and clients).