Tibor Reich for Concorde

Vintage Tibor Reich fabric cushions | H is for Home

We’ve long been fans of the designs of Tibor Reich and were lucky enough to catch a retrospective of his work at the Whitworth Art Gallery in Manchester last year.

Pair of cushions made from vintage Tibor Reich fabrics | H is for Home

A few weeks ago, we bought some cushion covers from a well-known online auction site. It was the original fabric used to make them that caught our eye. The seller photographed the covers alongside a cut-out from a magazine article that showed that the fabric was designed by Tibor Reich and had been used on Concorde.

We couldn’t find any images of the actual interior of Concorde showing this pattern. However we did find this reference:

One of the commercial highlights for Tibor Ltd. in the 1960s was a commission to design the first sets of upholstery and curtain fabrics for the Anglo-French Concorde (prior to trial flights in 1968) [Cabinet Maker and Retail Furnisher, October, 1966]. Five Jacquard upholstery cloths, in natural and gold were used as curtaining fabric along with two carpet designs [Cabinet Maker and Furnisher, October, 1965].
via “Patterns of Culture: Tibor Reich: A Life of Colour and Weave“, by K. Powers and M. A. Hann (with a contribution by J. A. Cousens).

Vintage Tibor Reich fabric with cut out from a 1960s issue of Cabinet Maker and Retail Furnisher, October

It’s clearly the same fabric as shown in the article, we just haven’t been able to find that ‘in situ’ image as yet. We’d love to see one. As well as being used on the plane, these fabrics were probably also used in the airport lounge for Concorde passengers. Someone’s probably got a lovely colour holiday snap with them pictured sipping champagne, reclining on seats covered in it!

Cushion made with vintage Tibor Reich fabric on a leather club chair | H is for Home

We were delighted with the fabric when it arrived. Beautiful colours and striking design – and unused, mint condition too. The cushions were very nicely made, so as cushions they will stay. With Justin’s chair addiction, we’ve got endless chairs to put them on!

Cushion made with vintage Tibor Reich fabric on a leather club chair | H is for Home

We thought they were a very good price too, considering the high profile designer and prestigious client… and a bargain never hurts!

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Thinking outside the box to market your online furniture store

Thinking outside the box to market your online furniture store

If you want conventional results, think conventionally and you’ll get them. However, if you want exceptional results, you’re going to have to explore nonconformity. In other words, if you’re trying to stand out in the world of e-commerce home furnishings, thinking outside the box to market your online furniture store will get you there. Here are a few ideas to help you get started.

homeware & property internet icons

Zag when everyone else zigs

Of course, all of the players in your space have websites, but how many of them have a branded app to automate some aspect of the home décor process? Better still, how many of them are thinking of logically alternative places in which to advertise the existence of said application? Sure, they all advertise on decorating websites and home lifestyle websites. But when you think about it, people buying homes and moving into new apartments are the ones most likely to need new or additional furnishings.

Advertise your app as a home decorating tool on real estate sites and apartment rental sites. Partner with estate agents and leasing agents to offer new home-owners and tenants an exclusive discount when they use your application. In other words, look for logical places to be, where your competition isn’t going. When everyone else zigs… zag. This moves you beyond the cluttered spaces in which everyone in your business is trying to garner attention.

Online trading

Put your own twist on a successful concept

Rather than sticking with the tried & tested methods endemic to the furniture business, look around at what marketers in other industries are doing to see what you might be able to apply to yours. For example, Marshalls looked at the boards of its Pinterest followers then had YouTube and social influencers deliver items from their lists to their homes. The company captured the reactions of the recipients, posted them to social media and it became the marketing campaign known as ‘Marshalls Pin Pals’. Think of ways your business can tweak and apply this type of idea.

Shopping online with a smartphone

Seek new solutions to traditional problems

As you’re considering how to start a furniture store, finding new solutions to the drawbacks of selling furniture online and basing your marketing around them will set you apart from your competitors. An outstanding example of this in the furniture business is the ‘mattress in a box’ concept. One of the most difficult pieces of furniture to ship, the sheer size of a mattress makes it real burden. Companies now offer compression machines capable of drawing all of the air out of a mattress, which reduces the size and makes it less costly to ship. The air seeps back when the mattress is removed from the box, returning it to its original size. This will also work for comforters, pillows and other bulky air-filled items. Ideas like this one will give you a unique selling position to exploit.

Yellow sofa on an online shop

Think outer space

Treat every idea like a good idea when you’re thinking outside the box to market your online furniture store. Write every thought down and give each one serious consideration. What might at first seem to be the most ridiculous notion could well turn out to be the best idea you’ve ever had. Go beyond the norm when brainstorming – think in ‘outer space’. After all, if you aim for the cosmos and fall short you could land on a cloud of your very own. If your dreams are ‘grounded’ in reality, you’ll always be on the ground – with everybody else.

Get their look: Grey industrial kitchen

Grey industrial kitchencredit

This grey industrial kitchen – and the house it belongs to, is one of the most stunning we’ve seen in a while!

The Barcelona apartment was renovated by Jaime Beriestain back in 2015. Despite the fact that this room doesn’t get much natural light, the owners were brave enough to paint the walls, ceiling and cabinetry such a shadowy shade.

The combination of dark grey, copper and natural wood is a modern classic that remains hugely popular. Objects that could otherwise get slightly lost, really stand out and draw your eye. The light that does pervade the space is somehow enhanced, and you notice its play on shiny and reflective surfaces.

There’s a profusion of hard surfaces and materials which is very practical for a kitchen… and yet, despite this, the room retains a real warmth. We love it!

  1. Vintage XL French bread board
  2. ALANA rectangular mirror in brass
  3. Sycamore chopping board
  4. Extra large marble pedestal pestle & mortar
  5. Black BACKIG dinnerware
  6. Industrial style adjustable swivel bar stool
  7. Smeg TR90BL1 Victoria single cavity 90cm wide dual fuel range cooker, black

Have a look at some of the other interiors we’ve featured in our Get their look series.

Get their look: Grey industrial kitchen | H is for Home

Bookmarks: Home Sweet Home

Home Sweet Home children's book by Mia Cassany and illustrated by Paula Blumen | H is for Home

We’ve not written a book review in AGES and this one’s just a little bit different to our usual fare.

Front cover detail of Home Sweet Home children's book by Mia Cassany and illustrated by Paula Blumen | H is for Home

Home Sweet Home is a children’s book – recommended for ages 5+. However, even as adults, we’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading it… and, as regular readers will know, we appreciate and collect iconic children’s books!

Title page of Home Sweet Home children's book by Mia Cassany and illustrated by Paula Blumen | H is for Home

Published earlier this month (October 2017), it was written by Mia Cassany and beautifully illustrated by Paula Blumen.

'Queenie in London' page in Home Sweet Home by Mia Cassany and illustrated by Paula Blumen

Throughout the 40 pages, you’re shown around various interiors & exteriors from around the world – guided by the pets-in-residence.

'Pierre & Papillon in Paris' page in Home Sweet Home by Mia Cassany and illustrated by Paula Blumen

There’s Eva the St Bernard in Iceland, Coco the cat in Brooklyn… there’s even a tortoise named Taiki who lives in Kyoto, Japan!

'Juan in Seville' page in Home Sweet Home by Mia Cassany and illustrated by Paula Blumen

This book is a really fun way for kids (and grown-ups!) to find out about other parts of the world. It teaches facts such as San Francisco is very hilly, Giethoorn in the Netherlands is car-free and that houses in Ibiza are painted white to reflect the light and keep them cool.

'A home isn't a home without a pet!' in Home Sweet Home by Mia Cassany and illustrated by Paula Blumen

It’s a book that warrants plenty of return visits.

'Rex in San Francisco' page in Home Sweet Home by Mia Cassany and illustrated by Paula Blumen

It’s such a charming read…

'Bonaparte in Provence' page in Home Sweet Home by Mia Cassany and illustrated by Paula Blumen

…and the illustrations are full of lovely detail that reveal something new every time you flick through the pages.

'Chang in Hong Kong' page in Home Sweet Home by Mia Cassany and illustrated by Paula Blumen

This book is a fantastic Christmas or birthday present for any pet-loving, budding interior decorator!

'Drago in Capri' page in Home Sweet Home by Mia Cassany and illustrated by Paula Blumen

Home Sweet Home is available from the publishers in UK/Europe & US/Canada and from Amazon, The Book Depository and Waterstones.

[Many thanks to Ellen at Frances Lincoln Children’s Books for the review copy]

Designer Desire: Robert Sonneman

Mosaic of Robert Sonneman lighting designs | H is for Home

Robert Sonneman (b. 1942) is a New York City-based lighting designer. He began his career at the tender age of 19 as the sole-employee at George Kovacs, a shop located in the Upper East Side of Manhattan.

His designs are influenced by Modernism, most notably the Bauhaus movement. As the man himself says:

I’ve always been fascinated with movement, weight, and balance. I saw the lamps that I built as lighting machines that glorified the industrial aesthetic. As modern design and architecture morphed into other genres of contemporary style, I also explored new creative paths.

In 1967, he founded his own company under the Sonneman brand which became SONNEMAN – A Way of Light in 2003.

He’s very prolific (1,600 designs and counting!), with his contemporary designs available extensively; from his own store and other upmarket retails outlets such as YLighting. His vintage designs are readily available on 1st Dibs and sometimes come up for sale on Etsy and eBay.

Find more of our Designer Desire features here!

Robert Sonnemancredit

Additional image credits:

1st Dibs

Price Points: Electric blankets

Selection of 3 king-size, dual-control electric blankets | H is for Home

I may shortly be leaving my 5th decade however, it wasn’t until recently that I’d ever heard of dual-control electric blankets – what a great invention!

I mentioned in the past that Justin & I have different preferences in pillow size, number and hardness. Well, we also differ in the temperature that we like the bed to be. I’m almost never warm enough – I could have an electric blanket switched on for the whole night during the winter. Justin throws the duvet off complaining of the heat.

One of these king-size, dual-control electric blankets will prevent much night time grumbling and tossing & turning!

  1. King-size electric heated under blanket fleece throw twin controls: £16.99, eBay
  2. Homefront electric blanket king-size dual control: £48.95, Amazon
  3. Dreamland heated fleece dual control fitted electric underblanket: £69.99, John Lewis