The latest Design Lab collection from renowned interiors brand Sofa.com, is by far its most exciting to date.
Produced by five established British designers, including textiles guru Tamasyn Gambell and stylish screen printer Gail Bryson, the series focuses on nine new shining designs that have been added to the fabrics and home accessories available at Sofa.com.
Chief Product Officer at Sofa.com, Vanessa Hurley-Perera says; ‘We have really enjoyed working with some of the UK’s best new designers for the latest chapter in our Design Lab series. It’s not only our biggest Design Lab launch ever, but we’re so passionate about the new fabrics that we are also including them in our Continuity range – meaning customers can enjoy these fantastic textiles for longer.’
The range will include a plethora of key interior trends for SS18, such as fun polka dots, bold geometrics and strong stripes, all of which will be available in a variety of pastel and statement colour ways.
We caught up with one of the key designers for the range, Tori Murphy on her contribution to the series…
What first drew you to the world of textiles?
Since a child, I have always been creative and wanted to go to Art School from the age of 11. I studied Art at Kingston & Central St. Martins before doing an MA in Textiles at The Royal College of Art and then moved to Italy where I worked in textile design and manufacturing. It was the manufacturing side of things that really struck a chord with me and the seed was sewn to see if I could design & manufacture textiles in England.
How did the collaboration with Sofa.com come about?
They contacted me back at the start of 2017 and it has been a year of collaborating closely with the team to get to this stage.
What was the inspiration behind the range?
Whilst studying and working in London, I spent happy days living in leafy Holland Park. The simple and grand architecture of Clarendon Road and the beautiful communal gardens blooming with tulips, roses and hydrangeas that transported me to the countryside were a constant source of calm and joy, yet just 2 minutes for the pulsing Portobello Road and all the fun to be had! It really was the best of town and country and our collection for Sofa.com was inspired by this time.
Tell us a little bit about the collection. It seems ‘pared back’ in comparison to the other bolder patterns in the Tori Murphy collection. Is there a particular reason for this?
This new collection I think is a more traditional collection of designs and fabrics that lend themselves better to larger pieces of furniture. I love a big bold design but not necessarily for a whole sofa, so we have tweaked our classic designs and aesthetic so the style is still there, just a little more subdued and so more appropriate for more permanent, investment pieces of furniture. You can of course then accessorise your heart out with bolder cushions and accessories but your sofa will stand the test of time and will still be as stylish in 20 years’ time as it is now…
Why is supporting local talent and craft especially important to you?
It just feels like the right thing to do to make in England. Our aim is to make fantastic products that we understand inside out, that we can be proud of and it gives me a real sense of joy to be able to say we pushed things that little bit harder to make sure it was done as close to home as possible. We are providing skilled jobs for skilled people in our own community and you see the positive impact it has. We have very strong, personal relationships with our factories and mills in England and in our own small factory in Nottingham, we have 3 members of the same family working with us and that feels very special.
What is next in the pipeline for you?
We are expecting our second baby so that is next! Work wise, we have just signed off AW18 which is a beautiful new collection of cotton and wool home accessories, fabrics and kitchen textiles that will launch in June. The momentum for our English woven and made fabrics and products is definitely speeding up and there are plenty of things bubbling away in the background in the UK and overseas that we can share later in the year… It’s our busiest year yet so we are very much looking forward to seeing what is ahead for us.
Shop the collection
Feature by Nicole Gray