Materia, Klaessons and Skandiform

“Materia’s designs are rather playful and experimental while Klaessons has a more traditional and masculine image”, observes Fredrik Ehrnström, Head of Sales and Marketing at Materia.Klaessons AB. When you work with two very diverse brands within the same company you have to distinguish them carefully. It’s important that both design and marketing clearly bring out their respective identities. Fredrik Ehrnström expands om his theme:

“We like to say that Klaessons stands for European elegance with its more established models and well-known designers. In contrast, Materia strives to be experimental and engages young and exciting designers to realize new ideas. For instance, we’ve now developed a real eye-catcher, an “identitycreating” type of seating known as Praline Noir. Last year we launched Märta Friman’s table Ava as well as Front’s waste paper basket Bin that swells as it fills up.

“Praline Noir is a cross between a sofa and a bench, an upholstered piece of furniture for unconventional seating – exclusive and unique. The buttons are the fine point of detail: no Praline is exactly identical to any other. But Materia also does a lot with more discretion and in pure style, for instance its accessories such as hat-racks, coathooks and umbrella stands.”

The Klaessons label stands for a more coherent line than Materia’s. The focus is on furniture for meeting rooms and conference facilities. Among this year’s innovations are variants of the Mayflower series – a bar stool and a bench – designed by Lars Pettersson and Thomas Bernstrand. As well as the Mooses chair created by veterans Simo Heikkilä and Yrjö Wiherheimo.

“They made use of moulded felt, which is extremely hardwearing. I have a lot of faith in Mooses. It has an international touch and is made of quite unique materials.”

Long-term design at Skandiform

“A long-term view and a clear focus are key aspects of our innovations program”, says Magnus Gårdhed, CEO of Skandiform AB. “That means long-term thinking at several levels; we like to stick with the designers with whom we work well together. And some of the furniture has been part of our range for almost fifty years.”

Skandiform has two business sectors: Contract and Care.

Some ten innovations within each of them were presented at the Stockholm Furniture Fair in February.

“We adopt quite a different approach for each sector. Care offers furniture addressed to healthcare users, quite simply for all types of care. It satisfies the special demands made on seating heights and general comfort. Function has to determine design. Within our Care program, we have recently launched Woodstock, a new comprehensive series consisting of various types of chairs, armchairs, sofas, tables and storage units. By contrast, the design factor plays a bigger role in our Contract range, which comprises interior furniture for offices and public spaces.

“The concept of modular furniture fits well into our production process”, thinks Magnus Gårdhed. “We like our customers to give us their preferences as far as possible, so that we can select various items and put them together entirely according to their wishes. So everyone gets his own unique suite of furniture.”

This high flexibility is particularly characteristic of Playtime, an innovation within the Contract program. Jonas Lindvall, who regularly designs for Skandiform, has played with both dimensions and colour schemes in a range of variants.

“The second new sofa within the Contract range, known as the Concorde and designed by Mattias Ljunggren, is perhaps a bit more conventional”, says Magnus Gårdhed. “But it’s an on-going challenge to find distinctive designs for various tastes.”