Luxury heritage department store Harrods has been retailing furniture since the 1880s. Starting with cots and beds, it has developed an elegant library featuring the likes of design stalwarts Vitra, Gubi and B&B Italia; but now, for the first time, the British brand is launching its very own in-house furniture line.
Under the Harrods of London brand, the store has long been creating womenswear, menswear and luxury linens imbued with its own aesthetic. It is now growing this with the inaugural furniture launch, created in collaboration with Italian brand Porada and British upholsterers Artistic.
‘Designing a furniture collection in-house was the next step after the re-launch of Harrods Home four years ago,’ says Annalise Fard, director of home at Harrods. ‘We wanted to create a range which we could truly trust the quality of – and saw no better way to achieve this than working with two of our longest standing partners.’
The unique collaboration with Porada was an interesting choice. Working from the beginning on the initial design concepts, the Italian company sought to stay authentic to the materials used. ‘We wanted to combine artisanal craftsmanship with advanced processes; to treat the raw materials with the utmost respect,’ says Porada’s Mauro Nastri.
The range of sofas, tables, cabinetry and upholstery harks back to Harrods’ 1930s heritage, with accents of ziricote, maple and sycamore for the deep woods, combined with satin brass to allude to art deco influences. Marble features also enhance the collection's decadence, particularly in the statement ‘Sayre’ console.
The quality is undeniable, and further heightens the design cachet Harrods has been developing over the years. 'I think the real synergy between Porada and Harrods is the love of quality and the emphasis placed on respect for natural materials,’ stresses Nastri. Wallpaper* itself has collaborated with the store, showing designs from the annual Wallpaper* Handmade expo in its windows. In recent years, Harrods has become a destination during the London Design Festival, all the while hosting exclusive design collaborations and coveted pop-ups.
For more information, visit the Harrods website
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Sujata Burman is a writer and editor based in London, specialising in design and culture. She was Digital Design Editor at Wallpaper* before moving to her current role of Head of Content at London Design Festival and London Design Biennale where she is expanding the content offering of the showcases. Over the past decade, Sujata has written for global design and culture publications, and has been a speaker, moderator and judge for institutions and brands including RIBA, D&AD, Design Museum and Design Miami/. In 2019, she co-authored her first book, An Opinionated Guide to London Architecture, published by Hoxton Mini Press, which was driven by her aim to make the fields of design and architecture accessible to wider audiences.
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