Salone del Mobile Fashion. Fashion brands have set their eyes firmly on interiors, as this year’s edition of Salone del Mobile hosted immersive installations by COS (in collaboration with Studio Swine), Missoni and Louis Vuitton. Marni was established by Consuelo Castiglioni in Milan in 1994; not to be outdone on home turf, the brand installed an outsized playground at it’s expansive Viale Umbria 42 space. Just a few months ago, the brand’s new creative director, Prada alumnus Francesco Risso debuted his playful vision for the brand – and Marni Playland followed suit. And so colourful furniture and objects, crafted by hand from metal, painted wood and expertly woven PVC, were assembled next to interactive toys on coloured sand in tones ranging from dark brown to dusty pink and arsenic green. Marni’s Playland marks an extension of the brand’s home furnishings collection, extending to new designs such as stools and ingenious chairs with canopy roofs. The arms and manchettes of a red woven PVC chair even sport a set of turquoise baskets; ready for Milanese picnics al fresco.
A short walk from Marni’s vibrant playground for all ages, German family-held footwear brand Birkenstock made its crowd-pulling debut at Galleria Rossana Orlandi. The picturesque setting of the inner-city gallery (several exhibition rooms wind around a secluded courtyard where spring flowers blossom) was transformed into a bedroom, as Birkenstock expanded into homeware. Birkenstock can trace it’s company history as far back as 1774 but it was in the 1930s that the concern first pioneered its much in demand footbed. Today, sandals such as the double-strapped Arizona are sold in 90 countries, stretching across all five continents. In short, time for Birkenstock to prove its expertise in other fields. The new, health-focused, Birkenstock sleep systems and beds are explained best as a continuation of the brand’s famous insoles. The aptly titled ‘footbed’ is designed and constructed to follow the natural shape of the foot. The new sleep systems work in a similar fashion: three variations, including natural latex and a newly developed cold foam, responds to individual body shapes.
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