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WHO IS WALTER KNOLL, AND WHY SHOULD YOU CARE?

Now at the ripe, bold age of 150, Walter Knoll is one of few design houses left who really understand what true design really is. And here’s why…



BY Tess Ritchie

May 16th, 2016


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Terms like “luxury” and “craftsmanship” are used far too loosely in design. So much so, that what we now define as “luxury” or “expertly crafted” has become very muddied, and in many cases, unwarranted.

Luxury for example, is often confused with expense, when really it is about far more than a price tag. For Walter Knoll, luxury is about delicacy, elegance, and refinement of living – the joy and value of living to be exact.

Jaan Living, designed by EOOS. Nonchalance de luxe for expansive living landscapes. With spacious seat elements on a delicate framework – the hallmark of the award-winning range. On its own the upholstered bench works in an entrée, lobby or gallery. Jaan Living is a lot of things – but not down-to-earth. It is far too elevated for that.
Jaan Living, designed by EOOS. Nonchalance de luxe for expansive living landscapes. With spacious seat elements on a delicate framework – the hallmark of the award-winning range. On its own the upholstered bench works in an entrée, lobby or gallery. Jaan Living is a lot of things – but not down-to-earth. It is far too elevated for that.
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Healey Lounge, designed by PearsonLloyd. The ultimate mood piece. Healey Lounge is a modern chair that supports the rituals of our everyday medial life. The outer shell carries the soft upholstery – underlined by the distinctive piped quilting. A genuine tribute to the seats of legendary classic cars. Flowing lines trace the shape precisely. An elegant shell envelops the seat and armrests.  A tool for modern life: the broad upholstered armrest. Easily adjustable for comfort and as a surface for a tablet or smartphone. Healey Lounge reveals its personality whether as a soloist or in an informal get-together – lightweight, casually elegant, comfortable, on a swivel base. And you know what they say: how monotonous would life be without extravagant characters?
Healey Lounge, designed by PearsonLloyd. The ultimate mood piece. Healey Lounge is a modern chair that supports the rituals of our everyday medial life. The outer shell carries the soft upholstery – underlined by the distinctive piped quilting. A genuine tribute to the seats of legendary classic cars. Flowing lines trace the shape precisely. An elegant shell envelops the seat and armrests. A tool for modern life: the broad upholstered armrest. Easily adjustable for comfort and as a surface for a tablet or smartphone. Healey Lounge reveals its personality whether as a soloist or in an informal get-together – lightweight, casually elegant, comfortable, on a swivel base. And you know what they say: how monotonous would life be without extravagant characters?

Likewise, mastery of craftsmanship should only be applied to those brands that have the capability to control the outcome of piece down to the smallest detail with great finesse, detail that you continue to discover after years and even decades of owning a single ‘lived-in’ piece. People have a relationship with furniture. In the best-case scenario, they become reliable partners for years. But for that to happen, they need to be exceptional. Quality means fulfilling the wishes of each individual customer – an arrangement that creates trust. Successful products are the result of teamwork. Designers, furniture makers, customer advisers and craftsmen of various professions do their utmost to achieve the best results in terms of design, comfort, function and ergonomics. Masterly craftsmenship, select materials and technology precision all play their part in achieving the perfect form.

To this end, Walter Knoll takes great care and detail not only with the aesthetic design choices they make, but with the specifics of materials and how they are handled; specifying only the most expertly tanned leather for example and investing in the skills of their in-house artisans to work with and develop it. .

Can we really compare this same level of detail to the majority of the design world? Chances are, we can’t.

Grand Suite, designed by EOOS. The true luxury of living. Grand Suite makes a statement about what is preciously private. Designed with the true values of the culture of living. Precise lines, honest craftsmanship, fine materials. Personal and prestigious – with the aesthetics of something special. Clear contours, soft shapes – a genuine showcase of sofa couture de luxe. The spacious, soft cushions ensure that special comfort. The horizontal line of the upholstery flows into armrest and board. Best saddle leather, elaborately finished seams – the perfect union of sense and sensibility. A place close to hand – for a good glass of Baron Rothschild or your favourite book. Grand Suite likes demonstrating its grandeur in free space – classic, cultivated, supremely confident. A genuine sofa landscape. Sublime and elegant. Pure elegance for what really is precious – your private life.
Grand Suite, designed by EOOS. The true luxury of living. Grand Suite makes a statement about what is preciously private. Designed with the true values of the culture of living. Precise lines, honest craftsmanship, fine materials. Personal and prestigious – with the aesthetics of something special. Clear contours, soft shapes – a genuine showcase of sofa couture de luxe. The spacious, soft cushions ensure that special comfort. The horizontal line of the upholstery flows into armrest and board. Best saddle leather, elaborately finished seams – the perfect union of sense and sensibility. A place close to hand – for a good glass of Baron Rothschild or your favourite book. Grand Suite likes demonstrating its grandeur in free space – classic, cultivated, supremely confident. A genuine sofa landscape. Sublime and elegant. Pure elegance for what really is precious – your private life.
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Isanka Chair, designed by EOOS. Distinctive character. Isanka Chair is an invitation you cannot decline. The armchair stands for the values of the Isanka family appreciated by connoisseurs all over the world: a tribute to craftsmanship and material. Striking leather and fine fabrics meet in clean, flowing lines. Perfectly finished with powerful upholstery. Opulent comfort in a new dimension.
Isanka Chair, designed by EOOS. Distinctive character. Isanka Chair is an invitation you cannot decline. The armchair stands for the values of the Isanka family appreciated by connoisseurs all over the world: a tribute to craftsmanship and material. Striking leather and fine fabrics meet in clean, flowing lines. Perfectly finished with powerful upholstery. Opulent comfort in a new dimension.

And THAT is the real difference. This is especially true post-GFC, where more and more we are finding that out clients needs are going far beyond aesthetics. They want something more meaningful, something they can wear in, something they can continue to discover, something they can pass on to their kids; they want something that keeps giving beyond how pretty it is.

Jaan Bed, designed by EOOS. The lightness of being. Not bright and loud. The striking thing about the Jaan bed is its charmingly elegant allure. The designers made the upholstered bed float: generous lounging spaces on a delicate framework – seemingly weightless, Jaan shapes the room. Supremely soft and coolly casual. Poetry in the form of clean lines. Supple leather or natural fabrics form the headboard and upholstered framework. Additional comfort is provided by the matt shimmering servers and the board in black glass or striking saddle leather. High-class details, elaborately and carefully crafted. A wonderful place for all those essentials – your favourite book, your watch, a reading lamp. As obvious as it is special.
Jaan Bed, designed by EOOS. The lightness of being. Not bright and loud. The striking thing about the Jaan bed is its charmingly elegant allure. The designers made the upholstered bed float: generous lounging spaces on a delicate framework – seemingly weightless, Jaan shapes the room. Supremely soft and coolly casual. Poetry in the form of clean lines. Supple leather or natural fabrics form the headboard and upholstered framework. Additional comfort is provided by the matt shimmering servers and the board in black glass or striking saddle leather. High-class details, elaborately and carefully crafted. A wonderful place for all those essentials – your favourite book, your watch, a reading lamp. As obvious as it is special.
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Isanka Sofa, designed by EOOS. When design tells stories, we love to listen. Isanka tells of the art of craftsmanship: expertise, creativity, attention to detail. The spacious sofa represents the depth of culture at Walter Knoll: 150 years of expertise in leather, excellent craftsmanship, timeless appeal. Exquisite saddle leather shapes the back. Precisely finished edges and exact seams determine the shape. The high back flows into the gently sloping armrests. With large, soft cushions in front - they enhance the upholstery and ensure comfort. Isanka keeps the secrets of the traditions of craftsmanship and special materials. For a culture of mindfulness.
Isanka Sofa, designed by EOOS. When design tells stories, we love to listen. Isanka tells of the art of craftsmanship: expertise, creativity, attention to detail. The spacious sofa represents the depth of culture at Walter Knoll: 150 years of expertise in leather, excellent craftsmanship, timeless appeal. Exquisite saddle leather shapes the back. Precisely finished edges and exact seams determine the shape. The high back flows into the gently sloping armrests. With large, soft cushions in front – they enhance the upholstery and ensure comfort. Isanka keeps the secrets of the traditions of craftsmanship and special materials. For a culture of mindfulness.

For over 150 years, Walter Knoll continues to fulfill that desire for quality of life by truly investing in the genuine values that are injected into every piece in the lead up to them taking up residence in our homes and workplaces for what is often decades. It is one of those magic brands that no matter which piece you choose for which project, it never fails to be spot on. And isn’t that what true design really is?

Want to find out what real design is all about? Head to Walter Knoll Australia


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