So­phis­ti­cated de­sign is alive and well right here in the Mid­west, as th­ese fur­ni­ture ar­ti­sans prove.

Milwaukee Magazine - - CONTENTS - – KRIS­TINE HANSEN

Lo­cal de­sign­ers cre­ate stun­ning fur­ni­ture that will add panache to any room.

Mario and Cathy Costan­tini, La Lune, Mil­wau­kee

FORTY YEARS AGO, MARIO AND CATHY Costan­tini opened an in­te­rior de­sign show­room next to the Pfis­ter Ho­tel, al­most on a whim. “We thought it would be fun,” says Mario.

In ad­di­tion to their dec­o­rat­ing ser­vices, Mario soon started craft­ing fur­ni­ture. “My fa­ther was an up­hol­sterer and I helped him af­ter school, so I had a lit­tle knowl­edge of fur­ni­ture con­struc­tion,” he says. That’s how La Lune Col­lec­tion was born.

Their big break came when Ralph Lau­ren’s in­te­rior de­signer spot­ted their rus­tic pieces in a New York City show­room and wanted them for Lau­ren’s home in Mon­tauk, New York. (He’s still a cus­tomer to­day.) “We thought, ‘Hmm, if Ralph Lau­ren likes us, maybe we’ve got some­thing here,’” says Mario, who still de­signs ev­ery piece. Cathy han­dles much of the of­fice work.

La Lune sources po­plar and wil­low from north­ern Wis­con­sin, and the de­signs are in­spired by car­pen­ters who “took wood in the raw rather than cut­ting it up in boards,” says Mario. “We’re more about the past than the fu­ture.”

The Costan­ti­nis in La Lune’s River­west show­room, where cus­tomers can view the col­lec­tion by ap­point­ment. The fur­ni­ture is also avail­able on­line at lalunecol­lec­

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.