New York City is a never-ending source of design marvel, and yesterday I wandered into a small showroom in the Flatiron where I had one of those “aha” moments that even this (slightly) jaded city dweller loves. Mondo Collections on 22nd street off 5th avenue has an interesting collection of furniture and lighting in an airy loft 15 floors above the pavement. Just inside the brushed steel doors, bathed in generous sunlight, I found a truly inspired piece of art masquerading as a wing chair.
2 women, Hoda Baroudi and Maria Hibri, have been collecting antique textile remnants for years and have conspired to give them a life anew as sculptural seating. This duo of Lebanese ladies fashion modern quilts from the ruins of textile in a truly remarkable way, and then set upholstery craftsmen loose with them on a collection of mid-century modern frames. In the furniture silhouettes you’ll see hints of Eames, Breuer, and Miller. The quilts themselves are riotous, mix-matched and exuberant. Red, orange, plaid, stripe, silk, wool and the occasional tatting doily are all present. Just gorgeous. The “Grandpa’s Ears” wing is well proportioned, and while I found the seat depth a tad skimpy, the upholstered lumbar support more than made up for it. Lindsay Bailey (Mondo‘s sales manager) was incredibly helpful, as I inquired about purchasing 2 for a client. Turns out that no 2 will ever match, and while a gentle color suggestion is welcome from designers/clients during ordering, this is one of those situations in life where you relinquish control of the finished product to the artisans. You’re buying the frame upholstered in art, with each finished piece signed by the designers. Reminds me of Fortuny textiles… the sample in the showroom rarely matches the shipped product, and you know that before you purchase it because the centuries old printing technique is effected by the weather in Venice. Take a few minutes to check out the many frames in the Bokja collection on the Mondo website, I have a feeling you’ll be glad you did.
Bokja “Grandpa’s Ears” chair through Mondo Collections. one of a kind to order. $4625.00
Mondo Collection 20 West 22nd Street / Suite 1501 212-675-8155