When Fashion Meets Furniture
The often laborious, extraneous task of picking out one’s outfit for the day is put into perspective when one has to choose the furniture that they will put in their home or office. Generally, we like to furnish our homes and offices with pieces that will make us feel comfortable and not just for today, but for years to come. It is not sustainable to choose furniture that we may find delightful for a month, only to consider it old hat shortly after. The timelessness of design is ubiquitous at Knoll.
KnollTextiles Creative Director, Dorothy Cosonas, came up with Knoll Luxe, a line of “fashion-forward textiles inspired by the minimalist style of Florence Knoll.” The idea was to take designers with a clear vision and have them create textiles that would become modern staples of Knoll. Knoll in its purest form is known for its simple, yet distinct designs. The four designers that have contributed are, Maria Cornejo, Proenza Schouler, Rodarte and Suno. All four have a unique approach to design.
Maria Cornejo is a Chilean fashion designer who has seen many parts of the world, from London to Tokyo to her current home in New York. Cornejo opened her own store in New York called Zero + Maria Cornejo. Cornejo has been a red carpet success, with big names like Tilda Swinton and First Lady Michelle Obama choosing to wear her clothing. Her designs, both for Knoll and her label, are based around the use of geometric shapes and innovative methods of cutting fabric.
Suno, a “high end collection with a conscience,” is made up of designers Max Osterweis and Erin Beatty. The duo came together after Osterweis was troubled by the senseless violence he saw in Kenya. At first, the collection was made up of Kenyan Kangas, which are traditional Kenyan garments. The brand has since evolved and gone on to win the CFDA Swarovski Award for Womenswear Ethical Production and has been a finalist for a number of prizes and awards, such as the LVMH Young Fashion Designers Prize. Suno’s designs for Knoll can be described similarly to their line, which is a global brand in that it takes inspiration from all of the countries that they work with to create their lines.
Proenza Schouler, also known as Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez, are two New York designers that came together at Parsons School of Design. While the story of how they came to be may be nothing out of the ordinary, their designs are just the opposite. Proenza Schouler, which is their mother’s maiden names combined, has become a staple of modern American fashion. In 2004, the two-year old brand furthered their career by winning the first-ever CFDA Vogue Fashion Fund award, which has since grown into one of the biggest honors in the fashion industry. Since then, Proenza Schouler has won countless other awards and established itself as one of the biggest American designers. Their designs for Knoll have been described as “a mix of strong color balanced by clean neutrals and novel textures.”
It-girl sisters Kate and Laura Mulleavy make up Rodarte, the LA-based label. The sisters are known for their quirky designs, from their line of Star Wars inspired dresses to a line based on Frankenstein. Another designer with an affinity for maiden names, Rodarte is the Mulleavy sisters’ mother’s. They are another award-winning label, winning the CFDA Emerging Womenswear Designer Award and the Swiss Textiles Award. Their designs for Knoll are an “abstract translation” of Rodarte’s last few runway shows.
Knoll’s commitment to modernity is also a commitment to finding new designers to work with that reflect their vision. This ranges from those with new ways of designing or working with fabrics to those with a cause. When asked where her inspiration comes from, Creative Director Cosonas said, “inspiration comes from keeping your eyes open.”