STYLE ON THE SOFA

Three in­ter­na­tional su­per-brands, three new sofas. We take a seat with the big names be­hind the de­signs

ELLE Decoration (UK) - - Style Des Ign -

JEAN MARIE MASSAUD ‘ SYD­NEY‘ SOFA FOR POLIFORM

Toulouse-born and now based in Paris, Massaud has a global out­look that he de­scribes as ‘evolv­ing avant-garde’. New to the pro­lific Mas­saudPo­liform part­ner­ship, which has pro­duced 40 pieces to date, is the ‘Syd­ney’ sofa – one of many pieces named af­ter vi­brant cities that in­spire the ar­chi­tect-de­signer. ‘Poliform is not a con­ser­va­tive brand, but its fur­ni­ture is clas­sic in pro­por­tions and ma­te­ri­als. The fam­ily be­hind the com­pany and I get on well and, to­gether, we are mod­ernising a lit­tle. We de­signed this sofa for the con­tem­po­rary, in­for­mal way that peo­ple live now. It’s aimed at the younger cus­tomer who stays in a five-star ho­tel, but doesn’t want for­mal fur­ni­ture. It should not be part of a three-piece suite! It is low and per­fect for re­clin­ing. Plus, as it can be con­fig­ured to fit small or spa­cious apart­ments, it can move around with the owner.’ THE FACTS Wooden frame, metal base, avail­able in 31 stan­dard fab­ric cov­er­ings, as well as vel­vet and leather on re­quest. Match­ing cush­ions avail­able. From £12,000 (poliform.it).

AN­TO­NIO CITTERIO ‘ GRAND SOFÀ’ FOR VITRA

Renowned Ital­ian ar­chi­tect and de­signer Citterio is a for­mi­da­ble name in fur­ni­ture de­sign. Big brands from Her­mès to Iit­tala vie to com­mis­sion his sig­na­ture de­signs, and Swiss man­u­fac­turer Vitra has joined forces with him to cre­ate the state-of-the-art set­tee that is the ‘Grand Sofà’. ‘There are many big squashy sofas around, but Vitra is re­spected for its in­dus­trial de­sign and clean lines. Work­ing to­gether, we wanted to blend the two,’ says Citterio. ‘There’s a spe­cial re­la­tion­ship be­tween de­signer and man­u­fac­turer. Col­lab­o­ra­tively, we worked out how to trans­form a flat draw­ing into a three-di­men­sional prod­uct, par­tic­u­larly the jig­saw puz­zle of fab­ric pan­els and seams. It started with a pen­cil sketch. I don’t de­sign dig­i­tally, as com­puter ren­ders look so ster­ile. This piece was in­spired by a one-off pair of sofas I de­signed for my apart­ment in Mi­lan. In a mod­ern home, seat­ing isn’t al­ways up against the wall, which is why the back of this de­sign dou­bles as a minia­ture desk or drinks tray. A sofa doesn’t ex­ist in a vac­uum! It has to work in the space it’s in.’ THE FACTS Can be up­hol­stered in a choice of three fab­rics, in 17 colours. Frame can be pol­ished, or pow­der-coated black or white. From £5,090 (vitra.com).

PIERO LISSONI ‘ SAKÉ’ SOFA FOR B& B ITALIA

Pro­lific ar­chi­tect-de­signer Lissoni has cre­ated ev­ery­thing from yachts to traver­tine sur­faces and cof­fee ta­bles. Re­mark­ably, given that he and B&B Italia are both Ital­ian de­sign A-lis­ters, the ‘Saké’ marks their first col­lab­o­ra­tion. ‘B&B Italia gave me a pretty blank can­vas – they just said, “We need your con­tem­po­rary touch”. The de­sign came from a search for light­ness, so the legs are very fine and in­vis­i­ble from some an­gles. The sofa seems to float,’ he ex­plains. ‘I think fur­ni­ture should be sim­ple and serene. With this piece, I stripped away the de­sign to make it as lean as pos­si­ble.’ THE FACTS Up­hol­stered in a choice of 16 fab­rics and four leather colour­ways. Steel base fin­ished in pewter lac­quer paint. Var­i­ous sizes avail­able, and it can be con­fig­ured as a chaise longue or sofa bed. From £5,537 ( bebitalia.com).

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