01 April 2014

Living Room

My house is most definitely a work in progress. But the living room is the most complete. 

I took this picture for a project about to be launched by V&A Dundee called "Living Room in the City" which is the first outreach project to be delivered by the developing museum. 

The architect of the building, Kengo Kuma, described V&A Dundee as a living room for the city, a place where everyone could go to socialise, learn and enjoy. Now the first project encourages people to post images of their own living room and the objects that they live with. 

Whilst it may look like a completed room, there is some work to do - the floor could do with being re-finished, I'd like to replace the fireplace and the coffee table needs sanded and waxed. Oh and I do have curtains, they just need a hem taken up before I can hang them and the sofa you can't actually sit on because the rubber webbing needs replaced. But the new cushions look lovely.

The table and the sofa are retro pieces made by British company Ercol in the 1950s and 1960s. The table I bought at an auction and the sofa I bought from my neighbour - it needed considerable work - new foam, new fabric, upholstery and webbing, as well as sanding and revarnishing the arms. 

Ercol was established in 1920 by Lucian Ercolani, who perfected the art of steam-bending wood in large quantities to manufacture their signature pieces - the Windsor Chairs. In 1946 Ercol exhibited their pieces in the post-war Britain Can Make It Exhibition at the V&A in London and at the 1951 Festival of Britain exhibition. Their pieces have been in constant production since. On their website you can actually see catalogues from across the decades (I found my coffee table in the 1965 one and the sofa in 1956, 1965, 1978, 1985 and 1993 catalogues and my wardrobe in the 1956 and 1965 ones). 

Perhaps their most famous pieces are their studio couch and their pebble nesting tables

Recently their pieces have been reimagined by a number of designers, including both Donna Wilson and Timorous Beasties, successful Scottish designers. 


The rug is from Marks and Spencer, the little stool is by a Cumbrian woodworking company called Olive Design. The red candelabra is a Ghost Candelabra by Innermost which I bought for £5 on sale in La Rinascente in Milan and then had to fit into my hand luggage on the way home.  The rocking chair was designed by James Harrison for Habitat and is a real favourite of mine. 


Thimbleanna said...

It's beautiful Di and just as I would imagine for you -- colorful and modern. I LOVE that rocker too -- it looks like it would be great fun to sit there and rock and knit!

Bethany Hissong said...

Oooh I love the history of furniture! And I really love the whole idea of posting people's own living room photos! That would make a fantastic coffee table book! Your pieces are really beautiful. And I want that studio couch you linked too-- so so nice. I just love the big windows in your home!