High fashion strutted off the runway and into the room with installations at international design shows this year. At Salone del Mobile in Milan, Hermès, Prada, Dior and Louis Vuitton all made bold statements in home decor. The International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF) in New York City explored the connection between fashion and interior design. Dynamic, organic objects morphed between worlds, shape-shifted and stretched across eras at NYCxDesign week and Maison et Objet in Paris, where the humble home accessory was given the haute treatment. There’s a new dress code, and these pieces strike a pose.
Photographs by Clinton Hussey, styling by Nicole Sjöstedt.
Photographs by Clinton Hussey, styling by Nicole SjöstedtFashion Forward Furniture
One of the fashion houses at Salone del Mobile and NYCxDesign week this year was Versace, which staged an installation with artist Andy Dixon and interior designer Sasha Bikoff. “Versace lives through colour and pattern, breaking rules and promoting a sense of confidence and glamour, which is how I decorate,” says Bikoff. That glam factor—with some over-the-top strut—is manifested in the Mesedia chair, shaped into the brand’s iconic Medusa head motif. Or, for a more subtle accent, handcrafted stools by one of the design world’s stars, Patricia Urquiola, brings together vibrant hues and carved textures, much like an unexpected piece of jewellery makes an outfit.
1. Mesedia sunrise orange chair by Versace Home ($8,600), Major Interiors, majorinteriors.ca
2. Sefefo stool by Patricia Urquiola for Mabeo ($3,245), Inform Interiors, informinteriors.com
3. Parisienne chair by Marcel Wanders for Roche Bobois (price on request), Roche Bobois, roche-bobois.com
Photographs by Clinton Hussey, styling by Nicole SjöstedtPop Life
Also at Salone del Mobile, Louis Vuitton showcased the playful Dolls chairs, furry and full of personality, as part of its Objets Nomades home collection. “Dining chairs are usually so boring, the same design repeated six or eight times around a table,” says Yael Mer, one half of the Raw Edges design duo who created the quirky seating for the fashion brand. So, as with any style-setter’s wardrobe, mixing it up is essential. In that vein, a multi-hued series of monkeys (glamified piggy banks) add pop to any decor, while the poufy silhouette of the Montgolfière sofa—inspired by the brothers who invented the hot-air balloon — is fun and fabulous, bringing a fantastic journey into the home.
1. Be/Colour! Twiggy light by Marc Sadler for Foscarini ($4,532), Livingspace, livingspace.com
2. VIP baggage trolley in Vegas Gold by Kare Design ($1,549), Inspiration Furniture, kare-vancouver.com
3. Kimono armchair by Kare Design ($1,199), Inspiration Furniture, kare-vancouver.com
4. Montgolfière sofa by Globe Trotter Collection by Marcel Wanders for Roche Bobois
(price upon request), Roche Bobois, roche-bobois.com
5. Money Box Monkey Iwazaru by Kare Design ($99), Inspiration Furniture, kare-vancouver.com
Photographs by Clinton Hussey, styling by Nicole SjöstedtSalon Vibe
NYCxDesign saw cast-bronze doily-accented chairs and Persian-carpet-inlaid tables, as well as plush velvet sofas and fringe accents—harkening back to the Dorothy Parker set. In Milan, coinciding with Salone del Mobile, Gucci opened a pop-up of lush furniture and opulent patterns, evocative of that bygone era when the salon was a gathering place for great minds and unfettered ideas. Here, Fendi Casa has its own take with the soft-pink LouLou armchair, curvaceous and conversational (think tête-à-tête). Even the traditional sewing basket gets revamped, transforming old-school craftwork and the textural quality of saddle-leather weave into a new kind of roundtable.
1. LouLou armchair by Fendi Casa ($5,250), Major Interiors, majorinteriors.ca
2. Cestlavie side tables designed by GamFratesi for Poltrona Frau (from $9,525), Livingspace, livingspace.com
3. Bold armchair by Kare Design ($1,869), Inspiration Furniture, kare-vancouver.com
Photographs by Clinton Hussey, styling by Nicole SjöstedtThe Shape of Water
“I wanted to create an effect as if water was flying…” is how Dutch designer Jólan van der Wiel describes “Journey of a Raindrop,” his Salone del Mobile glass-tube installation for Issey Miyake, the iconic fashion designer known for free-flowing design. Shape-shifting is also toyed with in the Pili “emotional light” by Arturo Alvarez, made from a single stainless-steel thread in a serpentine swirl that’s both linear and cloud-like. And the Cairn stone chair, designed by award-winning students in Parsons’ MFA Industrial Design program, is similarly multifaceted, evoking water-polished pebbles as ergonomic seating. “The inspiration behind this chair was really about developing a closer connection between nature and our lifestyles,” says co-designer George Plionis.
1. Cairn stone chair by Weiran Chen and George Plionis for Roche Bobois (price upon request), Roche Bobois, roche-bobois.com
2. Pili suspension light by Arturo Alvarez (from $916), LightForm, lightform.ca
3. Wood sea glass table by Brent Comber (price on request), brentcomber.com
4. Flow side table by Brent Comber (price on request), brentcomber.com
Photographs by Clinton Hussey, styling by Nicole SjöstedtSpiritual Style
A mesmerizing mandala screen was, quite literally, a focal piece in Louis Vuitton’s Objets Nomades at Salone del Mobile. This spiritual symbol touches on an introspective and even celestial side of design. “I think it has a hypnotic quality,” co-designer Giorgia Zanellato said to Vogue. “It reminds you of the infinite.” Bulgari also explored this otherworldly and meditative aspect at Salone in a “cosmic web” of duality from artist Tomás Saraceno: a galaxy of constellations and spider webs. Deep. But these intricate and lacy structures bring lightness to actual design pieces, like an armchair woven with Vienna straw or the fine Japanese rice paper and cane weave of the Wagasa floor lamp, which casts a light that’s hypnotic indeed.
1. Colony armchair by Skrivo Design for Miniforms (from $2,490), Bloom Furniture Studio, bloomfs.com
2. Wagasa floor lamp by Servomuto for Gebrüder Thonet Vienna ($4,881), Inform Interiors, informinteriors.com
3. Piper sofa by Rodolfo Dordoni for Roda ($12,780), Livingspace, livingspace.com
4. Mastea drum tables by Matteo Zorzenoni ($2,775 to $3,160), Bloom Furniture Studio, bloomfs.com
5. Coconut Grove club chair by Ratana (from $1,500), Ratana, ratana.com