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This company disrupts Nordic design, one discovery under the radar at a time

For many emerging designers, moving from a successful graduate collection or solid social media following to a successful business can seem impossible. This is how Åben hopes to help budding designers from a certain design-centric region.

The brand, which launches its online store on August 1, is the brainchild of David Harrigan, a former entertainment lawyer turned entrepreneur who started the company to encourage new talent in Nordic design. Based in Alma, a collaborative workspace and creative hub in the trendy Östermalm district of Stockholm, the studio will release a collection from the first range of its ‘carousel of talents’, including Antrei Hartikainen, young Finnish designer from the year, who makes his furniture in the Fiskars Arts Center, and the brand’s first designer-in-residence Nick Ross, who created a bespoke piece for the brand. (In his temporary role, Ross will also act as a sounding board to help new designers navigate the industry.) To keep its offerings both fresh and focused, the site will bring in and out products from new manufacturers all over the place. every few months. “Åben is a platform for emerging product design talent based in the Nordic countries,” Harrigan tells AD PRO. “It’s almost an incubator … a greenhouse for talent to turn it from good to great.”

Samuli Helavuo’s Edition Shelf will soon be available for purchase from the Åben website.

Photo: Unto Rautio / Courtesy of Åben

A cabinet in natural oak by Antrei Hartikainen.

Photo: Arsi Ikaheimonen / Courtesy of Åben

The idea behind Åben arose as Harrigan struggled to find options beyond the usual big brands to decorate his London home. He had found opportunities to support independent designers directly in fashion, where clients can easily order personalized clothing, but it was more difficult for him to discover and support new voices in design. It was then that he started talking to recent graduates of KADK (Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts from Schools of Architecture, Design and Conservation in Copenhagen), Konstfack (University of the Arts, Stockholm Crafts and Design) and Aalto University in Helsinki – “the Harvards, Oxbridges of design,” as Harrigan calls them – and hanging out in cafeterias meeting dozens of young graduates to ask a single question: ” And now ?

During these conversations, he found that there was no shortage of innovative designs, but found that many young designers struggled to run a business on a day-to-day basis: marketing, communication with clients, taxes, logistics and insurance. “A lot of them think they can launch a web page, set up an Instagram account and their products are going to take off,” he says. That’s why Harrigan decided to build the infrastructure so that “the designer can get back to what he does best.”

Erin Turkoglu’s Pillar Vase, seen here, filled with spring flowers.

Photo: Courtesy of Åben

The seed for Harrigan’s idea also came from examining how other industries operate on the internet and how new talent is emerging in music or art. “What about the products? You know you’ve been successful when your products are offered at Design Within Reach or Fritz Hansen, but what if you’re just starting out? What’s your SoundCloud, your YouTube? Design professionals and collectors he spoke to expressed similar concerns. “There was a whole industry that was in conflict,” says Harrigan. “They wanted to defend young talent, but they couldn’t find it.”

While Åben is supposed to be that online marketplace, featuring editorial-inspired styling, text and photography, Harrigan plans to expand the business into the physical world with experiential offerings such as a commercial hotel or a physical store. Whatever avenues the brand takes, they will all be linked to its long-term sustainability plan: Harrigan’s goal is for Åben to become carbon neutral within its first three to four years.

In the meantime, Harrigan sees Åben as more than a new way to shop. He hopes it will be the center of a new creative community and an antidote to the over-the-top, unadventurous “Blandinavian” style, as it is sometimes called. “If there’s one industry that’s ripe for disruption, it’s Nordic design,” says Harrigan. “We are creating a whole new category.

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Jacquelyn Wind, Global Furniture Group: NYREJ

Name: Jacquelyn Wind

Title: Territory Manager, Corporate Business Development-Long Island / Metro NY

Company name: Global Furniture Group

How many years have you been in your current field? 6-1 / 2 years

Indicate up to three CRE organizations of which you are currently a member:

  • Company of Commercial and Industrial Brokers (CIBS-LI)

What has been your greatest professional achievement or your most significant project in the past 12 months?
My greatest professional success at Global happened when I first started hiring. I was warned that the territory I was about to inherit had not had strong representation for seven years, and that the global “brand” would need to be introduced or renewed with our dealer partners and their partners. commercial. I made it my professional / personal challenge to spread the Global brand to all those who would like to listen to me! There were some fun bets at the various dealerships, which I wouldn’t hold for a year… well, I guess I won! I made some wonderful friends along the way.

What trend (s) do you predict to dominate your industry in 2019?
Consumers are still looking for “healthy buildings” or “green” initiatives, as we have seen for over 10 years. “Healthy” employees and sustainable furniture will dominate 2019. The allocation of space in the office will continue to shift from an individual space to a more collective and community space, to further promote collaboration, team-based work. activities and migration within their spaces.

Which of your philanthropic activities are you most proud of?
After the recession, I gave up my 28-year career as a commercial interior designer. I wanted to give back to my community. I contacted the American Heart Association to volunteer. I was placed on the HeART Ball event committee. Local artists donated their artwork for the event and were to stay within the “What Do You Mean Most?” Theme. »I am also an artist (when I have the time!) My piece sold for $ 450! Someone loved my artwork and I raised money for the organization at the same time! It was a poignant moment for me.

What does it mean to you to be a team player?
A team player is someone who openly includes others … unbeknownst to them that you fully intend to help, encourage, strategize and achieve their goals … without no sense of return on investment and receiving the greatest sense of accomplishment knowing your teammate has been successful.

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Five most sustainable Nordic chairs named at the Nordic Design Competition: Sustainable Chairs


Chairs made from recycled seaweed and tea lights are among the winners of the very first competition dedicated to the design of sustainable Nordic chairs.

The competition, entitled Nordic Design Competition: Sustainable Chairs, was launched to promote the production of climate-smart furniture in Scandinavia.

A maximum of ten works from each of the Nordic countries – Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Norway and Iceland – were shortlisted in the first part of the jury process. Among these ten, a winner was chosen in each country.

Finnish Samuli Naamanka made the Clash 331 chair using a mix of traditional and modern techniques

The Swedish jury selected David Ericsson’s fully recyclable Petite chair as his country’s winner. The judges applauded its lightweight hardwood design for being “extremely resource efficient” and having a “low carbon footprint”.

Nikolaj Thrane Carlsen won the Danish category with his seaweed chair. Inspired by the seaweed roofs found in Læsø, Denmark, the shell of the Coastal Furniture chair is made from a 100% biodegradable seaweed composite.

Nordic competition shines the spotlight on the most sustainable chairs from across the region
Sölvi Kristjánsson recycled aluminum from discarded tea lights to create the Kollhrif stool

Made from recyclable materials, 50% of which are post-consumer recycled plastics, the HÅG Capisco chair by Peter Opsvik won the Norwegian category. Although initially launched over thirty years ago, the Classic Office Chair has been constantly updated and refined over the years based on user feedback.

Sölvi Kristjánsson recycled waste cork and aluminum from 14,400 discarded tea lights to create the Kollhrif stool which won the Icelandic category. The stool was designed to raise awareness about aluminum recycling in Iceland.

Samuli Naamanka’s Clash 331 chair wowed the Finnish jury with its “beautiful and sustainable design” which is made exclusively in Lahti, Finland, using both ancient woodworking techniques and modern production methods. The chair’s ash seat rests on angular legs made from certified Finnish lacquered solid wood.

Nordic competition shines the spotlight on the most sustainable chairs from across the region
Peter Opsvik’s update of a classic office chair, HÅG Capisco, won the Norwegian category

The competition was announced in September 2018 when the Nordic Council of Ministers called on designers from the Nordic countries to “take a fresh look at your current portfolio and examine it from a sustainability perspective”.

The winning designs will be presented in December at the Nordic Pavilion during the United Nations Climate Change Conference COP24 in Katowice, Poland. After the summit, the chairs will be transferred to Design Werck in Copenhagen where they will be on display for a year.

The five Chairs will also be evaluated by a researcher, who will reflect on their relationship to the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

The competition was organized by the Danish Design Center, in collaboration with the Nordic Council of Ministers and its international profiling project, The Nordics.

Organizations promoting design in each country were also involved, including DOGA (Design and Architecture Norway), DDC (Danish Design Center), Iceland Design Center and Ornamo Art and Design Finland.

Nordic competition shines the spotlight on the most sustainable chairs from across the region
David Ericsson’s small fully recyclable chair won the Swedish award

“Global awareness of sustainability is rapidly affecting customer demands,” said Tobias Grut, Nordic brand manager, Nordic Council of Ministers. “In the future, we’ll need less consumption, less manufacturing, less stuff – more circular thinking, more holistic production, and more thoughtful action. “

“In a really democratic way, we reached out to all Nordic designers to participate in the competition, not just established companies and producers,” he continued.

Dezeen will announce the winners of its own Dezeen Awards at a ceremony in London later this month where the winning projects will incorporate positive thinking on social impact and sustainability. The evaluation criteria have been carefully considered to ensure that the winning projects are not only beautiful and innovative, but also strive to benefit users and the environment.

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Muuto: the new Nordic furniture and housewares your home needs in 2019

Muuto – the Copenhagen-based design collective founded in 2006 – understands you. Rooted in Scandinavian design and characterized by endearing aesthetics, functionality, craftsmanship and honest expression, Muuto’s ambition is to express new perspectives on modern design and to ‘challenge the conventional perception of this to what a certain space should look like ”. It works. And it just works for you.

Do you fancy furniture with substance – furniture, lighting and household items it takes into account your lifestyle, your values ​​- besides being beautiful and well-made furniture. This is exactly what Muuto offers; home products that mean so much, people wonder why it hasn’t always been so. In addition, all of Muuto’s designs are also unique. This is because they select leading contemporary designers who are strong interpreters of their philosophy and combine their talents to create a range of high quality furniture that you won’t see anywhere else.

Each product is approached with the idea that a beautiful, avant-garde and characteristic design should not be confined to the limits of private space, but rather to a multitude of different environments. Which means every product deserves a place in your home. Granted, you can’t have it all, but you can have a few key things which are exactly what we’ve outlined below. So, scroll down to check out some of our top picks and shop the entire Muuto collection. here.

Designer duo Anderssen & Vol combined refined Nordic design and modern luxury to create the Two Seater Outline sofa for Muuto. With comfort a top priority, the deep seats and the foam and feather-filled body of the sofa make relaxation a dream; the perfect sofa to sink in and relax at the end of a long day.

The shape of the flowing lamp was inspired by a drop of water at rest and it is the embodiment of Muuto’s goal of encouraging new perspectives on modern design. The soft round shape and frosted matte glass gives off a warm ambient light that adds character to any room. This lamp can be hung as a single piece or in clusters as a bespoke feature piece.

As we said, Muuto’s approach to design is simple: to create innovative and functional designs that people can’t resist. It’s safe to say that they’re good enough to fulfill that mandate, because this Around little coffee table is one of those special types of furniture that you can build an interior around. A unique combination of functionality and elegance, the unique edge around the table top means that the items on the table are placed securely and perfectly while being the design feature of the room. It is perfect to combine with the other tables of the Around collection such as the large light gray Around coffee table or the small black Around coffee table.

Muuto 2
Muuto 3

Despite fierce competition in the home lighting world, the Muuto track light is quickly becoming a modern classic in the brand’s growing lighting catalog. This is because he has a lot more character than most. With its three-shade formation, the Ambit Track Lamp is perfect as a primary light source above a kitchen counter, dining table or even a bar. It’s not only this level of versatility that gives it its edge, but it’s the marriage of the raw and delicate elements of Scandinavian interior design that makes it particularly special.

Filling your home with multifunctional furniture is a simple step towards making your home much more livable. This split dining table is an example, as the solid oak wood frame boasts a unique long silhouette that is versatile and durable enough to be used for a range of functions. Rarely does a modern design piece operate in the realms of both minimalism and innovation – yet this split table manages to do just that. Because it elegantly combines the raw and luxurious appeal of solid wood with a functional and formal form.

The Atelier is a simple and honest chair, but it’s the exquisite details that make it so unique to Muuto. The distinguished joints and visible wood grains in the structure of the chair emphasize the craftsmanship and design elements of the workshop chair and echo the philosophy and aesthetics of Muuto.

Muuto 4

A simple Nordic design and a playful character are what makes the Pull floor lamp by Muuto so unique. The composition of the oak wood and white shade gives a sophisticated yet relaxed feel which is the perfect height and stature to light up any room in the house, whether placed next to a table , a sofa or a lounge chair.

Buy and explore the entire Muuto collection on OPUMO.

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Nordic design shines at the Fine Art Society

At the entrance to the Fine Art Society in London, there is a silver spoon made by Danish goldsmith Georg Jensen in 1921. It was produced the same year the gallery held an exhibition and sale of the Dane’s work. . It also hosted one in 1923, before Jensen finally opened his own flagship in the capital.

Last year, nearly 100 years after that first sale, a client approached the Fine Art Society to sell a collection of Jensen jewelry. “Nordic Design”, now, is a homecoming that combines these 71 works by Jensen with silverware by Nanna Ditzel, Hans Hansen and Tapio Wirkkala, and furniture by Hans Wegner, Philip Arctander and Kurt Østervig. What unifies the assembly? “The quality of the craftsmanship, the simplicity and the pursuit of beauty,” says General Manager Pippa Stockdale. “Wegner describes it as” an ongoing process of purification, “which I think sums it up.”

Philip Arctander Clam chairs, manufactured by Nordisk Staal.

Photo: courtesy of the Fine Art Society

A Hans J. Wegner chair and ottoman for AP Stolen.

Photo: courtesy of the Fine Art Society

There’s a Scandinavian purity that permeates the largely teak and silver display, but there are a few more refined highlights as well. A rare pair of beech sheepskin and clam chairs were designed by Philip Arctander, a Danish architect who flirted with furniture design in the 1940s. They were produced for a very limited period before Arctander was born. ‘completely abandons the profession. Manufactured in 1944, their comfortable appeal and whimsical shape still feel contemporary.

Vivianna Torun Bulow-Hube jewelry for Georg Jensen.

Photo: courtesy of the Fine Art Society

Scandinavia is known for its egalitarian society, so it’s no surprise to find Viviana Torun Bülow-Hube’s treasure in the treasure here. She was the first female silversmith in Sweden and “probably the first woman in this field to gain international recognition for her work,” Stockdale explains.

Never apart from schnapps, especially during those cold winters, the Nordics knew how to make a good beverage cabinet. A teak number with revolving doors, designed by trained naval architect Østervig, is a nod to the Scandinavian love of functionalism that is entertaining and clever at the same time: two nifty stools and a shelf for mixing drinks emerge from the beautiful honey body.

A safe from Orla Molgaard-Nielsen for AS Soborg Mobelfabrik.

Photo: courtesy of the Fine Art Society

Yet it is the Jensen who shines here. The collection shows the progression of the Scandinavian style through the 20th century, from the first embellished Art Deco pieces (the 1919 Schilling gravy boat is almost Victorian) to the clean shapes we know today for Nordic design (Torun letter opener by Bülow -Hube, designed in 1989, is a futuristic swoosh of minimalism): a process of purification, just as Wegner described it.

“Nordic Design” at the Fine Art Society, Bond Street, London, until January 3, 2018. thefineartsociety.com

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Sterling Furniture Group annual profits fall by more than a quarter

Furniture retailer Sterling Furniture Group saw its annual profits fall by more than a quarter in February 2017, despite an increase in sales of almost seven percent.

The Tillicoultry-based company said the 2016 acquisition of rival Forest Furnishing in a £ 4million deal helped push revenues to £ 56.7million (2016: 53, £ 2million).

However, the gross margin “declined slightly” over the year, which it blamed on changes in the sales mix as its strategy to expand its offering in the “difficult market” in which it operates.

The company said the Brexit vote and lingering uncertainty “had a negative impact on consumer sentiment and confidence” and a “mix of cautious consumer sentiment and still relatively low levels of activity real estate “has an impact on retail sales.

During 2017, Sterling said it continued to develop new departments, including flooring, housewares and interior design services, and launched a new fitted bathroom department covering design, supply and installation.

Sterling notes that Forest Furnishing had revenue of £ 4.72million from the acquisition through year-end in February 2017, and after-tax profits of £ 484,560.

The company said the cost of acquiring Forest Furnishing weighed on 2017 profits, which were down 27% from a year earlier to £ 1.82million (2016: 2.48million pounds sterling).

Sterling notes in the accounts now with Companies House, the profits for the year “were seen as a good result and an endorsement of the group’s overall strategy.”

Operationally, profit fell 24% to £ 1.94million (2016: £ 2.55million)


Following the acquisition of Forest Furnishing, the workforce grew to 657 in 2017, up from 626 in 2016.

Administrative costs rose 4% to £ 9.24million and distribution costs rose 12% to £ 15.85million.

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New Nordic design for Finnair – Business Traveler

The new design of the comfort bag is reflected in some tableware, including the coffee mug. Future plans likely include the introduction of a bowl of rice alongside the new design of the coffee cups (also in the ‘well’ model).

In addition to the new Nordic designs, Finnair’s new service concept will offer a wider range of food and wine options, served on demand.

It also introduces the Finnish tradition of “Kahvikutsut” – a coffee served with seven different treats – for long-haul flights from Asia in the morning. This coffee service includes traditional Finnish treats like Karelian pies, cinnamon buns, coffee cakes and Finnish chocolates between the two meal services.

In addition, the airline is presenting a new menu from Swedish chef Tommy Myllymäki, creative director of five Stockholm restaurants. Myllymäki will design menus for Finnair’s business class, and its winter menu will be served on all Finnair long-haul flights departing from Helsinki from February 2018.

The winter menu offers dishes such as Jerusalem artichoke with porcini and pear, and braised beef with celeriac and kale. The summer menu will put more emphasis on fresh, crisp seasonal vegetables to celebrate the freshness of the Nordic summer.

The economy class menu was designed by the Finnish Culinary Team which represents Finland in international culinary competitions. Meals will include a salad of marinated potatoes, lamb with baked turnips and a cheese curd cake. The winter menu will be followed by seasonal menus for summer and fall.

The new services will begin from February 7, 2018 on flights to Seoul, Tokyo and Shanghai, with a gradual roll-out of the remaining long-haul destinations in spring and summer.


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Vietnam-linked furniture group acquires assets of Stanley Furniture

HIGH POINT, NC – The iconic Stanley Furniture Co. will sell almost all of its assets to Churchill Downs, a limited liability company linked to the Vietnam Trade Alliance. Stanley will sell the assets for $ 11.5 million in cash, a $ 4.6 million secured subordinated promissory note and a five percent stake in Churchill’s parent company after closing.

Stanley will retain certain assets, including cash of up to $ 1.5 million.

Churchill Downs is a limited liability company founded by Walter Blocker, chairman of the Vietnam Trade Alliance in Ho Chi Minh City.

“Stanley is an iconic furniture industry company dating back to 1924 with a history of excellence,” Blocker said. “We are proud to have entered into an agreement to acquire the Stanley business and look forward to building on the company’s great history after the transaction closes.

The closing of the asset sale, which is subject to the approval of Stanley shareholders, is expected to close in early 2018.

Stanley says he has no plans to liquidate. Its board of directors will assess alternatives for using the $ 11.5 million cash consideration, which should include using a portion of the money to buy back common stock or pay a special dividend to individuals. shareholders.

Starting in 2017, Stanley slashed the salaries of its senior executives, bringing Company President and CEO Glenn Prillaman to $ 191,250 per year, from $ 255,000, and CFO Anita Wimmer to 112,500. $, compared to $ 150,000. Board members earned salaries of $ 22,500 and the Chairman of the Board earned $ 26,250.

Founded in 1924, Stanley Furniture Co. is an overseas design, marketing and sourcing resource in the high-end segment of the residential wood market. The company offers a diverse product line supported by an overseas sourcing model and markets its brands through the wholesale network of physical furniture retailers, online retailers and interior designers worldwide. , as well as through direct-to-consumer online sales.

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SKROSS partners with a Nordic design consulting firm for the overhaul of its brand

SKROSS brand owner WorldConnect has forged a new partnership with leading Scandinavian design consultancy, Jacob Jensen Design. *

The collaboration, announced at last week’s TFWA Global Exhibition and Conference, is expected to revitalize the design of SKROSS products. New products will be available by summer 2018.

Swiss engineering meets Danish design: On the SKROSS stand at TFWA World Exhibition (LR): SKROSS Corporate Communication Manager Pia Kautz, CEO & Managing Partner Christian Ernst, Duty Free & Travel Retail Manager Rudolfo Muller, Jacob Jensen Design Global Design Director Jakob Kjaer Nielsen and SKROSS Managing Partner & Head of Sales & Marketing Sam Gerber

The two companies said they have “strong synergies” that combine SKROSS’s innovative mobile power solutions with “avant-garde” Scandinavian design.

Pia Kautz, Head of Corporate Communications at SKROSS, said: “SKROSS is seen as a functional brand and seeks to appeal to stylish travelers through a new lifestyle image. We aim to update our designs to reflect the quality of the brand. It is an exciting project.

Sam Gerber, Managing Partner and Director of Sales and Marketing of SKROSS, added: “TFWA ​​has given us the perfect opportunity to communicate our joint plans – an affiliation of a leading brand of high quality travel accessories with this famous Danish industrial designer.

Jacob Jensen Design Global Design Director Jakob Kjaer Nielsen said the company is honored to contribute to SKROSS plans to reshape their products.

* Jacob Jensen Design partnered with vodka brand Danzka last year to create a new expansion of the super premium Danzka The Spirit range.

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Palliser Furniture Group acquires Casana

Palliser, the largest furniture manufacturer / supplier Canada, adds storage furniture to his portfolio.

WINNIPEG, Manitoba, June 22, 2017 / CNW / – Palliser Furniture Holdings Ltd. announced today that it has entered into an agreement to purchase Casana Furniture Company Ltd. June 30, 2017.

With this acquisition, Palliser Furniture Group adds the Casana range of storage furniture to its brand portfolio alongside Palliser Upholstery and EQ3, making it the largest home furniture manufacturer / supplier in Canada. Each of these brands, led by dedicated management teams, will strengthen Palliser’s market opportunities and benefit from synergies across the furniture group.

“This acquisition enables Palliser Furniture Holdings to showcase a full product lifestyle, including a variety of pricing and design aesthetics, which makes us more effective in meeting the needs of our customers,” said Peter Tielmann.

In support of the acquisition, the following executive appointments were made:

Roger friesen has been appointed Executive Vice President, Business Development of Palliser Furniture Holdings Ltd. June 1, 2017. In this role, his primary responsibility is to facilitate growth and development within the Palliser Furniture group of companies. Friesen was previously president of Casana Furniture Company.

Reece tomlinson was appointed President of Casana Furniture Company Ltd. June 19, 2017. Previously, Mr. Tomlinson was CEO of Intraline Medical Aesthetics PTE Ltd.

Roger friesen and Reece tomlinson will report to Peter Tielmann, President, Palliser Furniture Holdings Ltd.

About Palliser Furniture Holdings Ltd.

Palliser Furniture Holdings Ltd. is a private company of Winnipeg, MB. Its brands include Palliser, Casana, Pinnacle, North American Furniture and EQ3 upholstery fabrics.

SOURCE Palliser Furniture Holdings Ltd.

For further information: Monica Edwards, Doe-Anderson, [email protected], 213.222.7035

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