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Contemporary Furniture

The Heritage of Bontempi Making the Most of Metal

Wednesday, 14 November 2018

“Good enough is never good enough if your target is pursuing excellence”  Samuel Johnson 
The Bontempi business started in 1963 with a production capacity of less than 20,000 packages and 200 accounts. After gaining experience and expertise in metal handcrafting techniques, Alessandro and Giancarlo Bontempi established Mobilfer – a manufacturer of metal structures and equipment for warehousing. This sparked the beginning of their entrepreneurial career. Owing to their obsessive pursuit of quality and daily passion for their work, they employed a company of people determined to turn dreams into products. And in 1980, the Bontempi Casa brand was born, and a new collection of tables, chairs, stools and coffee tables were launched.

bontempi-history-metal-manufacturing  bontempi-delfina-chair

As pictured above from left to right: The Bontempi business began in 1963 and In 1987 Bontempi received an Oscar of Design Compasso  d’oro  in 1987, for its chair – Delfina

It was in 1985, with the continuous improvement of quality standards for products and manufacturing processes, that Bontempi Casa was able to establish a plant for galvanic treatment, in order to provide its clients with a special lifetime guarantee on chromed and gold-plated iron beds.

They received an Oscar of Design Compasso d’oro in 1987, for its Dining Chair – Delfina. The Jury of XIV edition awarded the Oscar: for the wise use of different technologies in a harmonious summary, also fit for purpose both structurally and ergonomically. In the continuing years, a further increase of production facilities was carried out, and manufacturing techniques improved, enabling the production of quality furniture on an industrial scale.

1989 saw their passion for design continuing, using the latest cutting-edge technologies and ergonomic solutions. Throughout the following decade, Bontempi developed internationally and in 2002 they launched their new collection of Design Beds, thoroughly researched for design and comfort.

It was in 2004 that Bontempi wanted to promote a young design and meet the modern furnishing needs. So, they introduced the new collection Ingenia Casa – using the best processes, offering a brand of wide-ranging quality products with good value for money.

Encouraged by the excellent results of the beds’ collection, in 2004 they focused on perfecting technologies and manufacturing procedures, introducing Bontempi Sofa – a range consisting of high-quality products, with advanced technological and aesthetic standards.

In the subsequent years, the second generation took charge of managing the company and today the sons are following in the footsteps of their parents in developing the business. The sons’ passion is equally as strong, and they are forward-looking, open to new ideas and research and always committed to achieving excellence. Their goal is to preserve Bontempi’s family business identity for the future.

Bontempi Casa has always been committed to the safeguard of natural resources. All the Bontempi Casa production is conceived and manufactured with extreme care, regarding the eco-sustainability of materials used.

Manufacturing processes and finishes are carried out, avoiding treatments with harmful substance emissions that can be noxious to human beings and the environment. Bontempi Casa uses non-polluting, solvent-free and plastic-free paints, recyclable glass, wood selected in forests managed according to strict environmental, social and economic standards.

Thanks to their 50 years of experience, Bontempi’s passion is to turn raw materials into bespoke design pieces. They thrive on enthusiasm, managing their work with a positive attitude and promoting innovation at every point. Every single day in their factories, they work on new techniques, new design concepts, new products to develop the best solutions for any kind of environment.

The Bontempi Casa dream is to furnish spaces where you can experience the unforgettable daily emotions and looking back through their history, they have certainly achieved it.


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Posted in  Brands We Love

Its All About Sage

Saturday, 10 November 2018

Among this years’ new neutrals, comes perhaps the most organic hue yet. From colour schemes to Feng Shui practices, Sage has been hailed as a multifunctional powerhouse that presents a host of physical, symbolic and decorative uses.

A grounding hue that invites the outdoors in, this subdued variation of green derives from the soft tonality of White Sage. From a wellness perspective, Sage can be a positive addition to painted walls or ceilings, creating a relaxing essence amidst current interior trends.


As pictured above: The Bonaldo Blanket Bed from Lime Modern Living

Creating necessary delicacy in the bedroom, Bonaldo explores the vintage quality of this grey muted finish on classic wood panelled walls with modern forms and soft textures that help to maintain a contemporary edge. For living spaces, truly unravel this pastel finish with complementing earthy elements such as brown leather sofas, dark wood furniture and metallic accessories.

Getting physical with this potent plant can have a direct effect on reducing stress. Referred to as ‘smudging’, the act of burning out bundled sage is an ancient ritual that releases aroma and smoke into the air.

Though traditionally it has the power to shift negative energy, science suggests it can absorb up to 94 per cent of airborne bacteria. Embrace this form of Sage as a valuable clearing concept in the home following winter illnesses, redecorating or before taking on new ventures.

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Posted in  Inspiration

The Heritage of Calligaris The Italian Dream

Sunday, 4 November 2018

“Old empty chairs are not empty in reality; memories always sit there!”  Mehmet Murat ildan 
There was once a man named Antonio Calligaris, who in 1923, had a small artisan workshop in Manzano, Italy. This man created a chair – the Marocca chair, which features a wooden frame and caned seat. It was this simple chair that started the Calligaris business. Antonio employed men to cut and assemble the wooden parts, while the women would work on caning the chairs, in customers’ homes.
Throughout the following decades, the chairs went into production. Antonio used wood from the surrounding mountains and straw from the Friulan lagoon. The apprentices would dye the cane with natural pigments and because machines were few, the women would often finish the chairs manually.


As pictured above from left to right: The Calligaris stores are located in strategic, highly trafficked areas of big cities and traditional handmade methods were practised when the company started in 1923
It was in the 1950s, that Antonio’s son, Romeo, inherited his father’s business. In the 1960s, it was passed on to the third Calligaris generation – to Alessandro and Walter, who put their faith in an automatic caning machine that could cane a seat in one minute and twenty seconds, compared to the two hours it took by hand. They also began using synthetic fibres that had similarities to straw.

In subsequent years, production capacity continued to grow and the business gradually transformed into a well-structured industrial company – leader in a geographical area, known worldwide as ‘the chair district’. The brothers created their first catalogue and started exporting abroad. From then on, Calligaris used dealers located across Italy and Europe, to distribute its products to the customer.

Alessandro Calligaris took over as President of the company in 1986. Calligaris expanded its range with chairs, tables, furniture, beds, sofas, furnishing and decorative accessories. Wood was no longer the only material they were using. Innovation meant that the company now began to work in metal, plastic, leather and glass.

In 1998, Calligaris opened its first American subsidiary in High Point, North Carolina, and in 2008 its first flagship store in Milan was born, which was followed in 2012 by a second one in Paris, becoming a truly international company.

For its 90th anniversary, Calligaris began exploring and reworking the trends of contemporary living and gave itself a new website, a new system of communication to end users and a retail network made up of 400 partners around the world, including over 70 mono-brand stores.

It was in 2014 that Calligaris became even more Italian with foreign investors buying in a season that highlighted the Italian brands of fashion, design and luxury. This marked a re-launch with a new phase of expansion, consistent with the history of a company that, since its founding in 1923, believed in the future and in Italy.

Today, with its three Flagship Stores, Calligaris celebrates its 95th anniversary in true global style, and 2018 has been rich in news with many exciting projects presented during the year.

With a catalogue of more than 800 products sold in 100 countries around the world, Calligaris is a modern enterprise with outstanding teamwork by expert designers, architects, trendsetters, artisans and specialised employees, that enables them to transform the most interesting and fruitful ideas into furniture and accessories. A harmony between technique and aesthetics, reason and emotion. A mix of contemporary design and functionality. That's why today Calligaris has become an international brand in terms of quality, creativity and technicality. It offers a wide range of functional furniture with an incomparable style, satisfying each taste and mingling with other forms, colours and materials with infinite possibilities. Elegant spaces, modern, beautiful products made to be functional, ergonomic and designed to simplify everyday life. 

And to think, it all started with a basic chair.


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Posted in  Brands We Love

Introducing Reflective Surfaces at Home

Friday, 26 October 2018

Injecting harmony and balance into the home has been a strong interior theme throughout 2018. This meditative inspiration continues to influence new collections and designs in the physical form of reflective surfaces.

Opposing an overly shiny or flashy feel, introducing coloured glass and tinted mirror finishes is key to mastering this trend. Marked with subtly, find elements that exude decadence, yet mindfully transform any room.

Planer Round Table by Cattelan Italia at Lime Modern Living

As pictured above: The Planer Round Table by Cattelan Italia at Lime Modern Living

Mixing luxurious materials to employ reflection as decoration, the Aston Sideboard by Cattelan Italia features a contrast of wood, soft leather and a central opening backed with stylish fume glass. The Harlem Bookcase also employs a similar technique to create an interesting focal point enhanced by intermittent reflective spaces.

Reflective surfaces can help mirror natural light and brighten smaller spaces. For a refined industrial look, introduce finishes with delicate lighting sources. For instance, the Foscarini Lumiere Table Lamp in black chrome can be stylised as an accent piece amidst softer surroundings.

For an iconic ambience, be bold with larger, unexpected surfaces. A softly rounded yet powerful reflection, the fumé mirrored top on the Planer Round Table imposes a glam retro feel. Enjoy this look in the modern home by recreating cocktail hour with elegant tumblers and bold gin glasses.


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Cattelan Italia: The Wow Factor and Flavour For Your Home

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