Furniture design is a hereditary thing in India. Just like architecture and interior design, several cultural, historic, contextual and climatic factors affected the furniture design, and currently, a mixture of all the cultural features are incorporated in the designs. New innovations related to designs and materials are introduced for better user experience and sustainable design.
Following are the notable Indian furniture designers.
1. Aakriti Kumar- Differniture
Aakriti Kumar is the founder of the furniture design studio Differniture. An alumnus of Parsons school of design, New York, her Firm focuses on Designing timber furniture using leftover timber waste. Her Furniture designs concentrate on movement and flexibility, challenging the notions of traditional wooden Furniture. She uses oil and wax as finishes, as opposed to plastic, making the Furniture completely eco-friendly.
Her name is featured in Forbes under 30 for her eco-friendly Furniture designs. One of her unique designs includes the web coffee table, where the table’s edge has a web-like woodwork pattern.
2. Vrinda Mathur, Navya Aggarwal, and Sahej Bhatia- Studio Wood
Product Designer Vrinda, Interior designer Navya, and Ar. Sahej created a line of furniture products with an amalgamation of different deconstructed sample pieces. They believe in prioritizing functionality without eliminating aesthetics. Their motto is to design for the young and restless. Their furniture designs are popular among the youth.
One of their notable works includes Drawer Poufs. Drawer poufs are a part of the studio’s Re-Love collection, where you can see the revival of discarded wooden drawers. An addition of a foamed seat with wooden pegs and knobs transforms the function of a drawer while retaining its identity.
3. Ar. Veeram shah- Design ni Dukaan
Ar. Veeram Shah founded ‘Design Ni Dukaan,’ which is an interior and furniture design firm. He strongly believes in hands-on learning and derives his inspiration from the iconic works of Carlo Scarpa and Le Corbusier while paying extensive attention to detail. One of his works includes the circular coffee table, made using wood and stone.
4. Srikanth Varma- Esvee Atelier
Furniture designer Srikanth Varma established Esvee Atelier in 2018 in the southern Indian city of Hyderabad. Srikanth works with only wood, which he idolizes. One of the designs is the Kaluva, whose form resembles a lotus leaf. This coffee table is a precious composition of three lotus leaves that recreate a scene from an idyllic pond.
5. Jehanara Knowles- Kam Ce Kam
Kam Ce Kam is a furniture brand launched by 27-year-old designer Jehanara Knowles. Knowles puts a contemporary twist on established crafts like cane weaving and stone carving with her designs. She aims to open up these traditional manufacturing processes to a broader audience.
One of her works is The Mausam desk, which combines two strong materials given a mild form through carefully carving details. It is a practical desk with a delicate reeded piece.
6. Kunaal Kylhaan Seolekar- Studio HAUS
Kunaal Kyhaan Seolekar is an alumnus of the Parsons School of Design and founded studioHAUS in 2012. An uncurbed curiosity drives Kunaal’s work to explore materials and diverse artistic styles from classical to contemporary. Creating a dialogue with the cultural and geographical context is also an essential part of his projects.
One of his works includes the croissant armchair, whose unique heritage is a shout-out to experimental industrial design and studio craft. Layers of fiber are hand molded and perfectly shaped to enhance comfort.
7. Anjali Mody – Josmo studio
Anjali Mody graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design with Bachelors in Industrial Design. She started Josmo Studio in 2010 with the firm purpose of opening up an entirely new world of design to the Indian market. Studio Josmo is all about transforming radical ideas into useable art. They combine artisanal techniques with modern aesthetics to create designs that match the urban consumer.
They pride themselves on unique handcrafted pieces with individual identities and express traditional Indian crafts in an innovative and accessible way. Notable work includes the Giacometti Study table. It is an ode to Giacometti; the Furniture design takes its inspiration from the elongated forms of his sculptures, accentuated with brass.
8. Avenish Jain- Spin
Avenish Jain founded the home-grown furniture brand, Spin in 2017. SPIN follows a single-minded philosophy of making simple, minimal yet exciting products for contemporary spaces. SPIN derives from exploring fresh possibilities by giving a twist to existing forms or forming a brand new story. Their furniture design language is based on ‘Iki’ and ‘Hygge’ design concepts. Iki’ is a Japanese concept of aesthetics, prioritizing simplicity, style, sophistication, spontaneity, and originality in a direct, unaltered fashion.
On the other hand, ‘Hygge’ is a Danish concept representing a culture of cozy, comfortable, and joyous living. They create Furniture, designed using metal and wood (white oak and white ash), sourced from Europe and Malaysia. Users can place spin’s product range in mixed-use spaces across residential, commercial, and leisure interiors options available colors and surface treatments.
Their notable work is the Nyx Lounger. A distinctive fusion of fresh industrial design, technology, and fine craftsmanship has an inviting Nordic silhouette. A slight twist in this design is the unconventional fold in the center, made using the aluminum sheet to augment the seating comfort.
9. Saif Faisal- Saif Faisal design workshops
Saif Faisal completed his training as an Architect from RV School of Architecture in 2010-11, after which he learned woodworking. His work draws heavily from his understanding of Anthropology, Processes, and Technology. He reflects “essentialism” in his designs. The main characteristic of his Furniture design is defined strong shapes that render a certain formal rigor to visual and functional attributes with his fascination for geometry. He features a vested interest in Sociology, Philosophy, and Cultural -Anthropology, which is highly integral to his creative explorations.
One of his notable works is the Split Bench. This detailed and crafted piece articulates the wood and achieves lightness and refinement. The flow of the surfaces and slicing expresses the wonder of wood.
10. Sapna Mathur- Savana Living
Sapna Mathur founded the three-year-old product design firm as an amalgamation of the old and also the new. Furniture designs are almost laid-back designs and a color palette that doesn’t stray too far from white, grey, and black. The users can use the rustic designs anywhere—be it a farmhouse in the middle of nowhere to an elegant apartment in a bustling city.
One of her works includes The Marilyn Cupboard. With removable shelves and coat racks, and two spacious drawers, the large shutter and panel design wardrobe is functional and emphasizes minimalism.
As one can see the common thing in these furniture designers are working towards user-friendly furniture, and striving towards sustainability, and trying to bring a balance between both.
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