Now more than ever, we are seeing the lines blur within design…a cross pollination of materials, furniture and space utilisation has become noticeable between sectors. Workplaces are moving away from desk based environments and are embracing softer, more homely finishes and third space furniture. Residential developments are looking more like luxury hotels, while hotels are now introducing schemes that resemble communal apartment style spaces. Not to mention that in Tokyo, you can now stay in a hostel that masquerades as a bookshop.
Furniture design is progressing in tandem with this industry change, and in recent years, new furniture trends have been emerging to keep up with this shift. Old classics are being made over with a fresh face and manufacturers are now offering a wider range of finishes. The classic Bertoia Side Chair now comes in a more playful plastic version and last year we wrote about Walter Knoll’s revamp of some mid-century Turkish designs…the Burgaz, Rumi and Fishnet chairs. Not only that, Fritz Hansen also welcomed back the Drop chair after a 50 year hiatus. These pieces could reside happily within a restaurant or hotel setting, or just as easily suit an office, meeting or reception space.
Features such as two tone fabric, metallic, coloured and timber legs are more frequently offered as standard options now, making furniture more flexible than ever. These details are filtering through all sectors of design and have largely been embraced by manufacturers such as Frovi, Naughtone and Connection. Each boast a wide selection of finishes in their portfolio, creating a smorgasbord of options suitable for application across multiple sectors. Some of the most adaptable ranges available are the Ilk family of chairs (Frovi), the Always selection of chairs and lounges (Naughtone) and the Dixi range, from Connection.
In a move to broaden their appeal in the leisure and hospitality market, Walter Knoll have chosen to forego the recent trend of gold in favour of hand textured brass. Their unique brass pieces were showcased at IMM in Cologne last month with the 369 chair, Joco and Oki occasional tables. Walter Knoll feel that these items provide a warmth that was previously lacking in their collection, making them suitable for residential and hotel applications.
So, whether it’s chairs for an office meeting space, restaurant stools, or lounges for a hotel lobby, the blurred lines of furniture design now make it easier than ever to find just the right piece for any space.
November 2016 marks our 15th year in business.
Following 10 years at Riverside Studios, Leeds, we’ve undertaken a reboot of our working showroom to highlight current and emerging trends in workplace design as well as showcasing some products that, quite simply, we like too much not to show! Launched at our CoWo15 Reboot event last Thursday, the new showroom can now be officially revealed. So, if you were unable to attend the event last week; this is us. Welcome to our World!
Our reception area now features a selection of leather classics from Vitra, Knoll Studio and Walter Knoll, showcasing designers such as Charles and Ray Eames, George Nelson, Eero Saarinen and Preben Fabricius and Jørgen Kastholm. Piero Lissoni’s luxurious Avio sofa system by Knoll Studio provides the central statement piece.
From KI, the EC4 bench system keys into the current biophilic design trend and features solid oak splayed legs and a matching laminate edge detail to give a softer and more naturalistic look. In common with other KI systems it incorporates a sturdy metal understructure with a comprehensive cable management trough. Intended as an agile work/meeting base we’ve completed the bench with CMD’s Inca power/charger unit. Inca has been designed with communal working areas and meeting rooms in mind. Four usable faces allow users easy access to power and USB charging regardless of where they are positioned around the table.
Sit-stand workstations are increasingly a requirement rather than a luxury and more systems are entering the market to suit a variety of budgets. We’re showcasing Vitra’s Tyde system by Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec, in our opinion one of the better back-to-back systems with its clever cable management solution and accessories.
Also from Vitra and again by Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec is the Alcove Cabin. The Alcove Cabin provides a secluded space, enclosed on all sides and accessible through a single opening. It provides visual and acoustic privacy for small meetings at the table and power connections and lighting allow it to serve as a fully-fledged workspace. Alcove was the original high back sofa concept; copied many times it has sparked a small revolution in workplace meeting areas developing into the agile working ethos.
The agile working theme continues into our new breakout space with the ADD modular sofa and table and Kipu stools from lapalma. ADD’s slimline aesthetic belies its strong structure. The area is nicely screened by the Howe Spaghetti wall providing a psychological barrier that is open enough to invite you into the space and yet also provides a modicum of privacy.
Our task chair selection includes the latest ‘sitting machines’ from Herman Miller, including Mirra 2, Sayl and Embody along with the fantastic new Keyn side chair. Intelligent seating offers include Wilkhahn IN, Boss Trinetic and Nomique Axia.
Finally our Knoll Studio collection showcases designs from Eero Saarinen, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Harry Bertoia, including the rebooted and inexpensive Bertoia side chair with plastic shell for indoor or outdoor use.
If there’s anything you’d like to see just drop us a line to arrange a visit or for more details or have a look at our video on our YouTube channel.
Here’s to another 15 years!
We’re celebrating with our big showroom Reboot Event tonight. Check back soon for a full review of the evening and all the new additions to our showroom.
A BIG thank you to everyone who has been involved in all our projects this year! Enjoy the festivities and see you all on the 4th January 2016.
Recently we were visited by Pedrali, who showcased their 2015 products to us. Here are just a few:
Nolita, vintage chic, a reinterpretation of Mario Pedrali’s 1963 outdoor chair. The Nolita steel wire chair collection includes chair, low and high back armchair and two heights of stool. The collection is available in white, yellow, orange, red, terracotta, light blue, anthracite grey and sage green.
Nemea is a collection of rather elegant wooden chairs with a die-cast aluminium sub-frame. The sinuous and organic wooden shapes are intended to be evocative of an aged artefact smoothed by time. Nemea comes in bleached ashwood which can be stained to ruby red, cognac or black. Available with or without arms.
Pedralli’s stylish take on modular seating is Social. The linear design is made of three seat modules; bench, straight back and corner/end back. However, Social’s aesthetic is made lighter and seamless by the positioning of the die-cast aluminium legs only at the ends of the steel frame. The frame can be powder coated or chrome finished.
Tweet by Marc Sadler is a range of simple polypropylene chairs with a wide selection of frames and finishes, suitable for a variety of commercial, public or domestic environments. Previously available with one or two-colour shell, the Tweet range has now been augmented with the addition of a fully upholstered version. Base options are sled and four leg chairs and stools and a four star base. Bases can be chromed, black chromed or powder coated. Padded armrests are also available.
For public spaces is the Plural system. Whilst the aesthetic is lightweight and minimalist, the die-cast aluminium frame and glass reinforced polypropylene shell is strong. With Plural, multiple configurations are possible with three, four, six or nine seat modules with or without armrests. The shells come in white beige or black and can be optionally upholstered. The frame can be powder coated or chrome finished.
First up is the Polly chair. As the name suggests, it features a polypropylene seat shell and furthermore, this is made using 100& recyclable material. As standard, the shell comes in a range of 6 RAL colours; Black, Stone Grey, Salmon Pink, Yellow, Pastel Blue and White. The base comes as a sled or 4 leg in white or chrome as standard and optionally in a RAL colour to match the shell, adding a touch of fun.
The elegant Always Lounge is an easy form for an easy chair. A careful combination of shapes has created a good looking and comfortable chair. There are 4 base options; 4-leg, 4-star, sled and wooden. The first three options are available in polyester powder coated steel or bright chrome.
Rhyme is a striking modular landscape product. The range features 5 trapezoidal pieces each with the same footprint to allow easy and creative planning. The modules include a bench and four high back spines, giving it an imposing shape, somewhat reminiscent of a shark!
Finally, complimenting the current Fold table range is the new Dalby table which follows the same aesthetic with a timber base.
In common with all of naughtone’s table ranges, Dalby and Megaped are offered in white MFMDF with matching edge band , white MFMDF, Oak and Walnut veneers or Forbo lino all with a reverse chamfered polished MDF edge.
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