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Industry Insider: Hasse Kvist Simonsen from KVADRAT

STUDENT STORIES-3

The amount of work we do with mid-century furniture at SDR, means that we’re often using Kvadrat fabrics – which is the tried and tested, industry standard for high quality mid century furniture. We’ve always been drawn to their amazing colour ranges and so are proud to work closely with such an iconic brand. We’re also very excited that Kvadrat will be sponsoring a significant prize, exclusively for one of SDR’s students at the end of this year – to be announced at our end of year show and open day on July 17th.

Before reading the interview with Hasse, below, check out this fantastic video which highlights the importance Kvadrat put on colour in one of their most famous ranges: Divina   KVADRAT – Divina, Every Colour Is Divine

Kvadrat Textile Field

Kvadrat Textile Field

How important is the wool to the ethos of Kvadrat and its quality?

Kvadrat produces textiles in many different qualities, the bulk being wool or wool blends. It will be the design and properties we wish to enhance that will decide the ratios. For instance, the iconic Nina Koppel textile Tonus is 10% helanca to make it wonderfully flexible for organic shaped furniture.

 

Wool is at Kvadrat’s heart. It is what the company is built on and we take great care in ensuring that all parts of production keep a high level of integrity.

The wool is sourced mainly FROM New Zealand and processed at mills mainly in Europe, Wooltex in the UK being the most significant.

What are the most notable differences between the contract market (hotels, shops etc) and the domestic market?

The most notable is the technical difference with the abrasion requirements – with large busy, public spaces needing fabrics that are more hardy than those in domestic settings.

Raf Simons' textile collection with Kvadrat

Raf Simons’ textile collection with Kvadrat

What have been some of the wider effects of the Raf Simons collaboration for Kvadrat?

The collaboration between Kvadrat and Raf Simons is unique in Kvadrat’s portfolio in the sense that it is the only collection we expand continuously every year.

It fits perfectly into the Kvadrat world as this venture is our first collection truly dedicated to very high-end interior textiles. We share a lot of mutual values with Raf Simons’ approach to design. The collaboration has given Kvadrat the opportunity to build a link to fashion and tap into this distinctively different and very inspiring dynamic. And we do see an increasing interest and bond with a slightly different audience in some instances which we find very stimulating.

When that is said Kvadrat is a design lead business – our modus operandi is to work with outstanding artists and designers on an international scale on all our textiles. Each contribute differently – from Giulio Rudolfo’s amazing colour sense to Ronan & Erwan bouroullec’s eye for strikingly gentle simplicity.

 

Are there any general future trends that you can see emerging (colours, styles etc)?

For Kvadrat it doesn’t really make sense to talk about trends. Our textiles are between one and three years in the making from idea to roll, and they are meant to be used for interiors and furniture that might last 10 years and probably a lot longer. So it is a long life cycle. If quality and sustainability are on trend, then perhaps yes, you could argue we contribute to that with our products.

 

schiphol

Hilton Schiphol hotel

hilton schiphol What has been the favourite project that you have worked on at Kvadrat?

In my previous role as project coordinator, I was involved in Hilton Schiphol Hotel in Amsterdam. As the project moved along more & more Kvadrat fabrics were specified on what was a high end hotel project. The dialog was good between all those involved in the project which went really smoothly and with an overwhelming outcome.

 

Kvadrat showroom in Shoreditch

Kvadrat showroom in Shoreditch

Kvadrat have a fantastic showroom in the heart of Shoreditch – what is the best thing about working in Shoreditch and what’s the worst thing?!

The best thing? I will say there are so many fantastic opportunities that it will be hard to choose one. The atmosphere surrounding the furniture business is so concentrated in this area. It gives a good environment because you are seeing familiar faces most places you go and it is very convenient to navigate around the friends within the industry. There is of course a lot of traffic which makes commuting harder but I personally would not change being in Shoreditch for anything.

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