As the nights draw in and we all spend more time indoors, we can’t stop thinking about ways to add warmth and comfort to our home.
Right now we’re daydreaming about curling up by the fire, settling into the sofa and indulging in a new book. Make the most of autumn nights by updating your living room with opulent upholstery in warm, rich fabrics.
They say there is no such thing as bad weather, just wrong clothes. The same applies for furniture. Investing in a new sofa or statement armchair is bound to make the new season more bearable and certainly more comfortable and stylish.
Made in the UK and Italy, this autumn sees the launch of six new furniture collections and pieces designed by The Conran Shop. You will be spoilt for choice. Meet Clement, Chiltern, Float, Elsa, Elgin and Lavenham.
The Clement collection – including a two-seat sofa, footstool and armchair – is characterised by its loose covering and contemporary twist on traditional country style. The Chiltern sofa features fixed upholstery and cast gunmetal legs, while the generous cushions and walnut legs of the Float range has a distinctly relaxed yet modern feel.
Made in Italy, the Elsa and Elgin collections are the embodiment of refined style thanks to their sleek low profile and use of Italian leather. Elsa, with her zigzag topstitch detailing and cast metal legs, and Elgin with his solid walnut base, are both available in an array of colours and fabrics.
Arguably one of the most popular designs for its easy elegance is the Lavenham collection. Designed and made in the UK with solid hardwood frames, the style features loose covers neatly finished with French seams in Belgium linen.
The Lavenham range features a three-seat sofa, armchair, footstool, love seat and bed and is available in a vast variety of new season colours including our signature aubergine.
Lavenham Three-Seat Sofa in Aubergine, £4595
Introduce one of these statement-making designs into your home and you’ll be glad for the longer nights, shorter days and prospect of spending extra time indoors.
Prices start from £995. Visit one of our stores or browse online for a closer look.
By: Sarah Ilene of The Conran Shop Chelsea
Designer Vicki Sarge combines three decades of innovation and inspiration in fashion jewellery. As an original founder of the jewellers Erickson Beamon, Sarge’s artistry has been celebrated by designers and collectors the world over.
We chat to the London-based designer about bringing her creative vision to life, celebrity fans and her new bedazzling collection for The Conran Shop.
What kick-started your career in jewellery design?
I started in the jewellery business as I could not find any jewellery to accessorise my friends’ fashion show. Since then, I have continued mainly focusing as a fashion brand with fashion being our strongest relationship.
POW! 23ct Gold-Plated Swarovski Crystal Necklace, £690
Tell us about your first collection at The Conran Shop?
I feel the collection is a perfect mix of design and fashion. Using a combination of Swarovski crystals and plated base metals. The collection is strong, sleek and a bit rock and roll.
Why do you think you are so drawn to bold, colourful designs?
Colour is always an inspiration for me – it is the starting point for many of designs and ideas.
Artisan Antique Gold and Silver-Plated Swarovski Crystal Drop Earrings, £370
It’s been an exciting year for VICKISARGE – what have been your highlights?
The shop relaunch has been very exciting and designing collaborations with Mario Testino, Erdem, Tim Walker and Sam McKnight have all been a joy. Seeing that I have the support from so many friends in the business has also been amazing.
How does it feel to have people like Kate Moss, Beyoncé and Lana Del Ray wear your designs?
I love the fun you can have working with amazing artists and models but I really also enjoy when we have a customer whose day is made a little bit better just by wearing one of our pieces. We get these compliments quite a lot.
Burma 14ct Rose Gold-Plated Swarovski Crystal Double Ear Cuff, £250
VICKISARGE for The Conran Shop is available in store and online now.
Magnus Long is a British designer working within spatial, furniture, product and lighting design.
We chat to the London-based designer about discovering his talent, developing ideas and his exclusive design collaboration with The Conran Shop.
How did you discover you had a talent for furniture design?
Out of all of the types of design I do, furniture is particularly fulfilling and attractive because of its subtle complexities and its completeness. It’s a very human scale of building and requires sensitivity to form, beauty and identity along with an understanding of engineering, craft and construction. These are all things I have always been drawn to ever since I was able to connect two objects together, but perhaps it’s noticeable now because over the last few years I have had the opportunity to work with some great clients, such as The Conran Shop, who have more resources and can bring these objects to an audience.
What comes first – the materials or the design idea?
For this collection we always intended there to be flexibility to combine different materials and finishes, so it’s been designed with a view for The Conran Shop being able to offer various options in their stores. There are always many factors to consider for any one design and the starting point changes depending on the reason for starting the project. My way of working is to collect as much useful information, which is often related to people and behaviours, and to define the project’s constraints, which usually includes materiality and construction. From there it quickly becomes a slightly daunting cloud of complexity which needs to be mapped and understood. There’s a lot of analysis, idea generation, modelling and visits to factories and (hopefully) an elegant solution emerges during that time – simplicity from complexity.
Describe a really good day in the Magnus Long Design Studio…
Model-making is incredibly fruitful for building ideas; for understanding construction for manufacture and refining an identity. I’m quite a rationalist at heart and enjoy starting with simple materials such as card, paper or wooden sticks to see how far an idea can go. As the design gets scaled-up, the detail and beauty begin to reveal themselves more and more, but it’s nice to keep the relationship with its origins alive, which you may see in some of the designs.
Tell us about your latest collaboration with The Conran Shop…
We have been working on designs for The Conran Shop since 2013. Some designs were already on our drawing boards when we began talking together, but others were brought to life from the direction and conversations with the amazing team at The Conran Shop.
We created quite a number of different families for The Conran Shop (there’s still more to come), some are quite expressive and others more subtle. All of the designs have various scale models which were built as part of our process, but probably the one I enjoy the most is the construction of the legs of the Stix table. It started life as five cocktail sticks with a piece of bent wire around the waist then twisted and splayed. The structure created is a circular array of triangles so it’s very strong. We went through a few different construction options, but for me the resulting turned wooden legs combined with a solid aluminium disc is a really delightful piece of engineering. Once you get to this stage the stakes can be high because of tooling and lesser companies would back away from making such an investment, so it’s great to work with The Conran Shop, who are prepared to invest in getting the design right and not compromise the original vision.
How would you describe the collection in five words?
Elegant, rational construction with beautiful materials. That’s six words – sorry!
What advice would you give to anyone interested in becoming a designer?
The exclusive Magnus Long for The Conran Shop collection is available in store and online now.