The Danish style sofa has become somewhat of an interior decorating staple. At Modern Times, we love a well-worn leather sofa but you can find brand-spanking-new leather sofas from long-running Danish manufacturers, Mogens Hansen and Stouby, or Australian vintage versions from manufacturers like Fler and Tessa. We have selected some fabulous Danish leather sofas, which will be available at our upcoming pop-up shop.
The vintage leather sofas take on a beautiful patina of age which adds so much character and texture. This idea is of age adding character is beautifully articulated by the Japanese notion of wabi-sabi, the beauty of imperfection, age and time worn irregularity.
This is my personal favourite - wabi-sabi at its best. I’m sure it will be snapped up very quickly.
Sofas and daybeds, new and old, in materials such as leather, wool, teak, rosewood and beech - everyone has their own favourite characteristics they are looking for in the perfect sofa. We love them in all their guises (save cheap knockoffs!) and one of the reasons they are so popular is that they can look just brilliant in all styles of interiors.
This is one of the Stouby sofas that will be in store, comfy caramel goodness!
Stouby is considered one of the finest manufacturers of the classic Danish sofa, second only to Borge Mogensen. The high quality of the leathers, dyes, fills and construction is what sets them apart from other manufacturers. Stouby was established way back in 1902 and still operates today, producing sofas in the Danish tradition, albeit in some more contemporary styles.
Come in to Modern Times Pop-Up2, launching December 9th, and see which one you like the most!
Modern Times News, Design, Furniture
Mid-Century and Sunshine
It seems that against my best intentions of being a constant and regular blogger, I actually fit more into the category of intermittent and slack blogger. I guess it's not too late to change my ways! In Melbourne the season is changing and we are getting a very welcome dose of sunny days. As we are plotting and planning our next pop-up for December, I find the sunshine so uplifting, an inspiring force! I am pretty damn excited about our upcoming shop and the details will be revealed soon (as soon as we work them out!) In the meantime, I thought I'd post some inspiring images of sunny mid-century style.
Photo by ooh_food If I could be here, I'd like to lay about on the grass shaded by the greenery, taking the occasional refreshing dip.
Photo by ooh_food This lounge not only has a gorgeous colour palette but the sun looks like it has moved right in. It all looks very perfect doesn't it!
Photo by RetroLand U.S.A Was it more fun in the sun during the 1950's? It looks like it! I guess no one bothered to worry about their skin back then either...
Photo by JoeInSouthernCA It would feel like summer all year round with this awesome indoor pool that pops with colour.
Photo by allerleirau Summer is on its way, along with all the great things that come with summer - like days at the beach, balmy evening drinking sessions, Christmas partys and holidays. Modern Times will also pop up again in Summer, so its all a lot to look forward to!
Modern Times Pop-Up // Poster
Look out for our poster and postcards on the streets of Melbourne.
Modern Times News, Design
In conversation with 'designed in brunswick'
Neil and Aisling from 'designed in brunswick' give us some insight into what has influenced and inspired their designs and how they come up with those fantastic names!
Pitka Blom lamp in banana by 'designed in brunswick'
Neil: We came to home-wares through our mixed design backgrounds, Aisling as a graphic designer and myself as a sculptor and food stylist. I also used to do a bit of merchandising and interior work back in the eighties. When Aisling turned her interests to fabric design it seemed only natural to combine forces and to focus on home-wares and to design things we would like to have around us. We have ended up with a bit of a retro-scando focus at the moment as well.
"I am constantly noodling about on a Scandinavian translators on the web to find names for our designs. It’s all pretty loose, any one design might end up with an amalgamation of Danish, Finnish and Icelandic words all kind of ‘mashed’ together."
Stormur (Blue Heaven) lamp by 'designed in brunswick'
Neil:The inspiration behind the ‘Stormur’ design comes from two distinct directions. Firstly I had a traditional Asian water motif in mind, a sea of waves, kind of semi circles on semi circles in repetition in deep blue on white. I wanted the clouds to come together in this sort of rhythm and colour. Secondly I wanted the styled rain and water droplets to have the same feeling as Harry Beck’s London Tube Map, quite formalised and highly graphic.
Aisling: The central inspiration for our fabric designs comes from a love of mid 20th Century Scandinavian design; it’s kind of the agreed starting point for most of our work. I also like to explore the scale of motifs in order to create quite bold work where possible. My commercial graphic background also comes into play here as well, to translate my design work onto cloth and ultimately into our living environment. We print all the fabric ourselves, which kind of gives me the best of both worlds, designing AND getting my hands dirty. Colour also plays an important role; I love using specific combinations of colour to create a slightly nostalgic feel, it supports the retro-scando theme and gives us lots of scope to point any particular design into any given direction.
The gorgeous designs from 'designed in brunswick' will be available at Modern Times Pop-Up Shop
Robin Boyd Open Houses - A Melbourne Modernist.
The Robin Boyd Foundation will host an open day - Designs for Warrandyte – on 15th May, 2011. Six houses, designed for various arty types, including Boyd’s childhood home, will be open to visit. I think this will be a great opportunity to gain an insight into Boyd’s work, a visionary and leader in Melbourne’s Modern Architecture movement!
Photo by SkinnyDrummer
Take a look, inside the house and studios of sculptor and printmaker, Inge and Grahame King, designed by Robin Boyd in 1951.
Robin Boyd (1919- 1971) was one of the foremost proponents of the modernist movement in Australia. Boyd designed mostly residential projects and believed in the fundamentals of modernism; rejecting unnecessary decoration, believing in the importance of good design and utilizing inexpensive, functional and partially prefabricated materials. Boyd designed over 200 houses and was equally prolific as a writer, commentator, educator and public speaker. Boyd’s architecture responded to the local surroundings whilst combining the ideas of the modern movement - this style became known as the post-war Melbourne regional style. The Robin Boyd Foundation was established in 2005 and is operated from Walsh Street (Boyd’s family home since 1958). Lectures, open houses, seminars and events run by the foundation continue the work and spirit of Robin Boyd - increasing community awareness, understanding and participation in design.
What Is So Good About Modernism?
Modernism has laid the way for the minimalist clean lines and open plan living that is still the dominant style of new buildings and interiors today. Why have the ideas of modernism had such an enduring influence?
In the early 20th century there were sweeping changes in technology and society. With continuing industrialisation and the rise of a more liberal society - artists, designers and thinkers led the break away from the traditional ways of perceiving and participating in the world.
This radical chair by Gerrit Rietveld, the Red Blue Chair, 1917, discards all ornament, stripped back to the barest and most utilitarian form. It doesn't look too comfortable does it, but it was a pivotal design in the move towards more minimal, functional design. —Photo by William Cromar
The ornate decoration of the previous eras were seen as excessive and a waste of effort and material. Modernism was all about exploring new materials, simplifying forms and utilising production techniques whilst maintaining a high level of craftsmanship. Probably the most important ideal that made modernism so enduring is the idea that ‘form follows function’. The belief that true beauty would be determined by the rational use of materials, quality craftsmanship and keeping functionalism as a priority. The essential function and structure of a design dictated the shape, leading to the clean minimalistic style we still find so appealing. Industrial production also allowed a more ‘democratic’ access to well designed everyday objects. The Scandinavian designers reconciled the somewhat coldness of Bauhaus modernism with a more human, natural aesthetic. Due to the climate in this region and the emphasis on indoor life, they understood the importance of a warm and inviting interior and ensuring practicality and comfort within the home.
Not just for the designers but for most Scandinavian people, good design is considered an essential part of everyday life.
Hans Wegner took the same principle of stripping back a design to a pure form but created a warmer, more inviting design by using organic shapes and beautiful natural materials. Photo by - ninahale
Drawer and cupboard handles are designed to smoothly and seamlessly integrate rather than stand out ostentatiously. Sideboard and sofas are lifted off the ground on slimline legs to create an uninterrupted floor space. Natural materials are able to speak for themselves. Attention to detail in design and craftsmanship have made the designs not only stand the test of time aesthetically but also made them durable, allowing us to enjoy the same 50 year old pieces today. Whether it is the original pieces from the 50’s and 60’s that still look great in today’s interiors or the minimalistic architect designed interiors of today. Modernist design prevails today because it is beautiful and it makes sense.