Let’s face it. We’re living in a neutral world. Just ask Dan Maddox, CEO of the LA–based Cromatti. “We saw how most home products are offered in a limited range of neutral colors and wanted to create something different,” he says. “We believe color is a celebration of life.” To that end, he teamed with Alan Rauta to create a collection of furnishings that emphasizes clean lines and color not to mention choice.
Entries in furniture (12)
A solid foundation is the key to everything—especially if you’re talking about buildings or rooms. With that in mind, designer Jennifer Ridel launched Foundation, a line of furnishings with good bones and great lines that can provide a sturdy base on which to build a room.
The pieces are all handmade in Ridel’s shop, which just happens to be located behind the main showroom in Van Nuys (she sells to professional and non-pro clients alike). “We can push the quality,” she explains, and adds that all of her suppliers are local too. Her craftspeople don’t use staple guns, and the pieces all feature cotton filling, jute banding and eight-way hand ties. “You feel the difference when you sit on the furniture,” she notes.
We shop online for books, clothes, groceries, even eyeglasses. What we don’t shop for much is furniture. By some estimates, only about three percent of furniture purchases are currently made online. When you think about it, it makes sense. Shopping for furniture is a singularly tactile experience. We want to feel the fabric or the finish, sit in the chair or the sofa. We want to walk around it and get the 360-degree experience so that when it comes times to put it in our living room or dining room, we know exactly what we’re getting.
“I approach every design—a building or piece of furniture—as a problem that needs to be solved,” says designer Aaron Portiz. A B.Arch graduate of California College of the Arts, Portitz recently launched a new furniture line. Here’s the twist. The collection is made in Nicaragua from wood sourced from the country’s North Atlantic Autonomous Region, where a 2007 hurricane had felled thousands of hardwood trees.
As part of our on-going series of interviews with young architects and designers, we're bringing you a conversation with Richard Ong. Ong received his undergraduate degree in biology at Bowdoin college and is now at MIT, completing his M.Arch. This spring, a design of his—a bench—was included, along with other student work, in the Furniture Society's booth at ICFF. Not too shabby considering it's only the second piece of furniture he has designed. We're pleased to share his thoughts on biology, architecture and design.