Browse Month: October 2020

The Napa Sofa: A Pure Expression of Modernism

If you are moderately familiar with the different popular decorating styles that have been trending for a long time and grabbing the attention of new generations, chances are you’ve heard of the Mid-Century Modern style. This decorating trend emerged in the middle of the last century and brought to light some of the most recognized names in the industry, some of which had already triumphed in the world of architecture and had a legacy of great importance. Little by little, in a period between the 1930s and 1960s approximately, many names of great impact left an exceptional mark of great recognition and an influence that has prevailed to this day. The Napa sofa is a clear reflection of what this trend means and why is the favorite of many around the world.

This midcentury sofa is not like the other models with leather upholstery, but rather a piece that has triumphed for several reasons, one of the most important being the attractive and unusual tan hue of its leather upholstery. What makes it so special? Without a doubt, its masterful balance between form and function, and the fact that it’s a highly comfortable piece, unique in its style, capable of providing your living room with the modern and sophisticated look it deserves.

Elements of Design with the Barcelona Chair: Geometric Patterns

When it comes to decor, geometric patterns are among the most used tools to create good effects in your place. Circles, squares, Triangles. heptagons… there are endless combinations. Geometric patterns give us a sense of order and calm, without losing dynamism and movement. And geometric patterns aren’t just an element of Modernism or contemporary designers. since the begging of time, ancient cultures, like Turkey, Persia, or African Tribes use geometric patterns, as decorative elements or as a part of spiritual or even artistic manifestations. 

A slight gradient, shaded, or abstract overlapping geometric will always be on-trend. Whether in your house, or your office, hardly they will fail you. As with any pattern, keep in mind that abusing one geometric pattern may result in a tedious or overwhelming space. 

How to use geometric Patterns

Use the strongest patterns in the base of your wall or your floor, using the rest of the elements of the room to counterbalance it. Geometric patterns are a strong vision. That’s why are so suitable in rugs, or on the floor.

How not to use geometric Patterns

Don’t use geometric patterns in your wall unless they’re really subtle, you risking to be overwhelming. Don’t use dark patterns in dark places, it will reduce the dimensions of your space, and don’t pair strong patterns in two different elements, like for example, cushions and walls, or walls and floors. 

Now you know how to use patterns with your Barcelona Chair. Don’t lose the opportunity and go to Barcelona Design, the best place for Mid Century Modern furniture.  

Design notes from the Barcelona Chair: The fascination for Oriental Rugs (II/II)

As we discussed in a prior article, the fascination of modern designers with Oriental rugs has a long road, almost since the very beginnings of Modernism. To pair clean-cut lines, minimalism, and efficiency in design with the rustic charm of thick, high pile rugs with simple or complex patterns has a synergic effect very appreciated.

Nevertheless, this fascination with Oriental rugs isn’t something new, because along with all history, in Europe and then in America, Kings and commoners have felt the attraction for the exquisite and artistic patterns of some Oriental rugs. 
Let’s take a look at other equally famous Oriental rugs. 

India rugs

Already introduced in the region in the 11th century by the Muslim Conquerors, India rugs had in their origin designs mainly Muslim. With time, India adopted its design with local motifs, material, and techniques, to develop their own identity. India carpets characterized to have complex designs with a high density of knots. The carpet industry in India expanded through several cities, like Punjab, Agra, Kashmir, Jaipur.
India rugs have a high density of knotting, and they are hand-knotted. There are hand-woven rugs, too in the region of Khairabad. India rugs are famous all over the world, and big stores like Ikea are large buyers for American and European markets.

Turkish rugs

One of the world’s most famous producers, Turkey has a long tradition as a producer of beautiful rugs. Used by all the levels of the society as protection for cold weather and isolating the floor of the tents, whether by nomadic or pastoral; or agrarian or town dwellers. Wool, cotton, and silk are the material used, and many European paints since the Reinassance witnessed their beauty, and consider it one of the most desired articles for royal and high status people. Women are essentially assigned with the task producing the carpets. A Turkish rug may take years to complete.

Pakistan rugs

One of the earliest manufacturers in Asia, Pakistan has a well established reputation as a great producer of rugs and carpets. Sangla Hill is the center of production in Pakistan, but the cities of Lahore, Faisalabad and an Karachi are the trade hubs. Their hand knotted are very famous, and their motifs often include gulls, medallions, paisley, and abstract figures. According to some scholars, the woven industry has in Pakistan one of their main contributors.

If you want to see your Barcelona Sofa along with the best rug, go to Barcelona Design, the best alternative for Mid Century Modern furniture and masterpieces like the Barcelona Sofa and the Barcelona Chair.

Great in pairs: The Barcelona Chair

Some chairs are more suitable for some purposes than others. A Shell Chair, for example, is great as an accent chair in one spot of the living room.  It looks great to stand it by itself. 
Something very alike happens with the Barcelona Chair but in X2!. The Barcelona Chair looks really great standing by itself, but the unique “X” frame of stainless steel, plus its tufted back and seat in black leather make it great in pairs. 
To produce the pairing effect, the ideal conditions are to dispose of two Barcelona Chairs, each one facing partially the other with a 45 degrees angle.  To do that, use your Barcelona Chairs, in front of a fireplace, at the end of a hall, or close to your backyard entrance. The effect is beautiful and magnetic. This is possible due to the sleeker design of the Barcelona Chair, of clean-cut lines and sober Italian Premium leather. 
If you want to feel the pairing effect of the Barcelona Chair, Barcelona Design is your best alternative in Mid Century Modern style furniture, with great classics like the Barcelona Chair, the Barcelona Sofa and more. 

The Shell Chair: Ahead of its time

Created in 1963, the Shell Chair is the perfect example of one idea ahead of its time. By the time of its release in 1963, Hans Wegner, its creator wanted to transmit the idea of a chair that would be comfortable and functional, but keeping its beauty from any angle you see it.

Reintroduced in 1998, a new generation in the rise of Mid Century Modern Style rediscovered the unique design of the Shell Chair and since then it became the classic image of an accent chair. With a winged reminiscences design, on a unique seat,  and an ultra-refined setting of  3 spider-like legs supporting its laminated veneer seat and back, the Shell Chair is now a reflex of avant-garde.

But in spite of its unique shape, the Shell Chair is very compatible with different styles and materials, since its main body is made of wood. Scandinavian, Coastal Living, Contemporary, and Mid Century Modern settings, of course, go well with the solid but aerial presence of the Shell Chair. 

If you want to experience the feeling of avant-garde comfort, you can order this masterwork now at Barcelona Designs or call us at 646-650-6552. 

Design notes from the Barcelona Chair: The fascination for Oriental rugs (I/II).

Since the rising of Modern Interior Design, at the beginning of the XXth Century, we’ve seen how as, an unexpected match, Mid Century Modern Style and rustic oriental rugs have come along a very successful journey together.

Mid Century Modern with its clean-cut lines, minimalism, and experimental approach uses the ancient magnetism of rustic oriental rugs, with its strong materials, skillful craftsmanship, and a decided functional design, to create unique combinations, where the Barcelona Sofa presides. 

Let’s take a closer look at the fascinating world of rugs.

Used since immemorial times by royalty and commoners (already in the 5th BC Century mentioned the beautiful rugs made by the people of the Caucasus), rugs provide us of isolation of the bare floor, as their primal function. Besides, they soften our footsteps in spaces overcrowded with people. These are enough good reasons to keep always a fine rug close below our feet, but additionally, the visual impact of fine rugs with their patterns, figures and shapes, and the texture and sensation under our feet,  is enormous in the end.

There are many different traditions in the art of rugs, in different parts of the world. Let’s take a look at some of them.

Moroccan Rugs

The type of rug more associated with Mid Century Modern style, Moroccan rugs were taken to the American and European attention by Le Corbusier and Alvar Alto, in their personal homes. They meet the ancient art of rugs by the people of Beni Ouarian, in Moroccan at the time it became a French overseas protectorate. Their main characteristic is its charming rusticity, made of undyed hand-knotted wool, generally with very simple geometric patterns (lines, squares, of brown and black color), mainly in a cream base. There is no doubt that the clean-cut lines of a black leather Barcelona Sofa are well balanced with this combination. 

Afghan Rugs

With very complex designs, they use to present  Herodo ancient tribal designs, with lots of details and colors, like the Bukhara, the octogon shaped foot of the elephant. Colorful, red is very abundant in this beautiful type of rug. 

Armenian Rugs

According to the historian Herodotus, expert Armenian rugs create beautiful rugs already in 5th Century BC. It’s believed that the Pazyryk carpet, excavated from a frthozen tomb in Siberia, is the first rug ever discovered. Very colorful, their primal motifs were animals: Dragons, eagles and serpents. 

Persian Rugs

By far the largest world producer of rugs, the Persian rugs have an ancient history of beauty, tradition, and complex designs. Due to the Islam rules, their motifs are mainly arabesques, vineyards, clouds, and geometric figures. They are mainly of wool, though there are some beautiful silk examples. 

If you want to see your Barcelona Sofa along with the best rug, go to Manhattan Home Design, the best alternative for Mid Century Modern furniture and masterpieces like the Barcelona Sofa.

Barcelona Bed: Black or White?

With an elegant,  relaxed frame as a remembrance of the mystic days of the Egyptian empire, and with that characteristic bolstered cushion, the view of a Barcelona Daybed is always magnetic and timeless. Presiding easily any classic living room, not only formal spaces are suitable to show its virtues. A family room or even a large bedroom are excellent alternatives to use a piece of furniture comfortable, beautiful, and elegant. 

But black or white? We know already the two regular presentations of the Barcelona Daybed. Ebony or Ivory? let’s take a look.

What’s the overall mood of the room? A room too dark is maybe well served with a luminous white Barcelona Bed to enlighten the whole space. The other way works too, with an incandescent white room in need of a solid color piece that brings balance.

Black leather

Classic and smooth. For a great living room, where a relaxed, but formal chat is required, the smooth, soft feeling of a black leather Barcelona Daybed is without a doubt charming. With dim lights, there is a good chance of an unforgettable experience.

White leather

Elegant and charming. For a sophisticated, shiny place where all the action takes place, nothing better than a Barcelona Daybed, as the focal point of the room. Enjoy a great space full of light and beauty.

Go to Manhattan Home Design, where Mid Century Modern Style art furniture classics, like the Barcelona Daybed, are rendered with an absolute commitment to the original design. 

Design elements with the Barcelona Chair: Patterns

A pattern is a single visual element that repeats in different elements of your decor, to create the desired effect. Patterns are profusely used in decor, in many ways, and they are a common tool for designers.

Where do you use patterns?

Wallpaper, rugs, cushions, floor, tiles…There are many elements where patterns are successfully applied. It’s a matter of taste, of course, and balance. Patterns can’t be repeated in excess, because that can be easily overwhelming.

There are a lot of patterns to use in our homes. Is just a matter of judgment and balance. Lets name a few:

Geometric/ Abstract: Squares, Circles, Triangles and so on.

Argyle: The classic diagonal checks seen on sweaters

Chequer: The classic squared black and white pattern of the immortal table game.

Animal Print: Tiger stripes, leopard stains. Use it carefully, because they are a bold option.

Chevron: A classic “V” pattern that fits perfect in walls and floors

Damask: Beautiful herald shape, is great in soft tones for refined or feminine spaces

Fleur de lis: A very classic pattern, today more associated with vintage style. It remember us of classic card games.

Floral: The shape or pattern of flowers. Use it carefully, it can be excessive or boring very quickly.

Gingham: Another classic pattern of little squares used exhaustively in blankets and napkins.

Herringbone: Little inclined squares, used in walls and floors. Its nowadays very popular.

Morrocan: An oriental motif, with a vintage or modern view, depending on the finish or presentation of the panel.

Paisley: Known as bacteria too, this pattern was hugely used and abused in the 1980s. Used with moderation.

Polka Dot: A fun, dynamic sequence of black points very popular

Go to Manhattan Home Design and find the best offers and inspo in Mid Century Modern Style Furniture, with great masterwork pieces, like the Barcelona Chair and Barcelona Sofa.

Design notes from the Barcelona Chair: Rugs

An unconditional element of modern design, rugs are used profusely in almost every home in the world. As for decor element, o as an insulating element, they are countless models and ancient traditional ways in many countries of the world, with their own identity, patterns, and styles that reflect their own cultural particularities.
Nowadays the terms rug and carpet have slightly different applications, with carpet meaning an entire floor, or large living room extensions; and rug a medium, small size carpet, mainly used in apartments and small houses. 
Nevertheless, a carpet or a rug is basically a layer of pile attached to a backing, with some decorative and aesthetics patterns or motifs. 
Throughout history, wool has been the preferred material for carpets, but now industrial fabrics and materials like Nylon, Acrylic, Polypropylene, and Polyester, among others, are used widely. Nevertheless, when it comes to high profile decor, natural, and even tribal rugs, with ancient craftsmanship techniques and patterns, are the most demanded, due to the contrast between the rusticity of materials vs. the exquisite set of patterns or figures. 

Mid Century Modern Style and Moroccan Rugs

Was because of the personal preferences of Le Corbusier, that oriental, and more specifically, Beni Ouarian’s, Moroccan rugs (made by the Ber Bers), made a definitive entry in the world of modern design. 

Due to the colonial adventures of France in the early years of the 20th Century, high profile architects Le Corbusier and Alvar Alto had the opportunity to make a trip through Marocco and got amazed about the rustic beauty of the Beni Ouarian’s people rugs. Made without any decorative purpose, but with the main intention of tent flooring, the harsh, savage woven method of the Beni Ouarian’s people set an effective contrast with the neat, minimalist, and clean order of Modernism, and later with Mid Century Modern. Later, other remarkable figures like Charles Eames and Frank Lloyd Wright adopt the Beni Ouarian’s rugs for their own homes, and then the trend went crazy. Everybody wanted to have one Benio Ouarian’s rug and the comfort of their New York home. 

Today, Moroccan rugs are selling that much, that is very probable that your next Moroccan rug won’t be a real, original one, but a replica. 
But Moroccan rugs aren’t the unique type of rug for decoring enthusiasts. Oriental rugs in general fascinated decore enthusiasts through the whole world for centuries, but many cultures have their own tradition that is worthy to know and study. Afghanistan, India, Iran (Persian), England, Ireland, France are some of the countries with ancient solid traditions.  Woven seems to be the preferred manufacture type, there are several other techniques, like knotted, and tufted.
Go to Manhattan Home Design and get the best inspo, offers in furniture and information on Mid Century Home designs and master works, like the Barcelona Chair and the Barcelona Sofa.

The Barcelona Ottoman and its versatility

If you are a decor enthusiast, you will find how a Barcelona Ottoman is the perfect ally for your decor. It will bring you style, quality and functionality. Let’s talk about the 3 versatilities of the Barcelona Ottoman.

  1. Versatile in functionality. An Ottoman works for you to relax. At the end of a hard workday, get a moment for you in your favorite chair, and chill your thoughts while your Ottoman supports your feet. Don’t you deserve it?. But this is not all of it. A Barcelona Ottoman is a perfect sidekick for a living room. As a little surface storage spot ( for a couple of magazines), or just as a decorative object, to fill an empty spot.
  2. Versatile in space. Ottomans are very popular at the side of your bed as a support point for your feet. Living room, Bedroom, and even outdoor are all spaces where the Barcelona Ottoman has the potential to complement your space. 
  3. Versatile in decor. Do you have a room too dark? with a lot of wood panels, leather furniture, and a heavy environment?  Take a white Barcelona Ottoman and place it in the middle of the room. It will bring you a lighter vibe with elegance and style. But you can do it otherwise. If your room is excessively clear, or it has a lot of white tones due to curtains, white walls, or clear furniture, you can use your Barcelona Ottoman to make an accent statement. With colors as white, black or yellow a dark Barcelona Ottoman against white surrounding, is a good tool to get your room balanced. 

In Manhattan Home Design you will find the best Ottoman: The Barcelona Ottoman. Trust in the best Mid Century Modern style furniture online.