This week Furniture Fashion had the pleasure of interviewing Kalina Gornicheva, the stylist and store planner for BoConcept, one of the most up and coming modern/ contemporary furniture manufacturers in the business today. We wanted to see what fuels BoConcept’s product line, and what significant consumer demands are being catered to. Based on what I have seen and now heard, the future of BoConcept in the modern furniture arena is very bright.
What is the fastest growing category in the BoConcept line of products?
We’ve seen a good steady and consistent growth in our upholstery line for the past few years. Sofas like Mezzo, Largo, Indivi2 and Quattro are designed with the customer in mind and provide great customization options. They are among the most popular on the market right now. New design icons like Alpha also contribute towards success of the upholstery line today.
What is your hottest finish currently? WengÃ©, Cherry, Walnut, Beech?
Black-stained oak was introduced to our selection almost 2 years ago and over the past two years it has been the most popular veneer. Walnut and wengÃ© are also among the trendy wood finishes this season.
Has BoConcept see a greater demand for white and lighter colored furniture?
There is no denying that white is hot right now. During the past few years we have seen white gaining popularity in the big cities. White is very clean and cool, perfect for the minimalist lifestyle of the big cities. Add some silver and black with a touch of blue or red and your home will look just like the trendy images from our catalog.
Why should a consumer choose a BoConcept product over another comparably priced product?
It is our concept that makes us different form other retailers. Customization – the fact that our collections are designed with a modular concept – makes our furniture the perfect solution for any size room, any taste in color and style and fit any budget. We offer different veneer and fabric options. And one of the best things of all is that you can design your home in detail using the BoConcept 3D software called FurnishÂ®. FurnishÂ® is also available for download on our website (www.BoConcept.us). For those looking for an expert opinion and good interior design solutions our design consultants are pros and ready and willing to help in any of our Brand Stores. No purchase necessary!
How has the modern furniture market changed in the past few years?
I think the modern furniture market is dictated by the lifestyle in the big cities, which is a busy lifestyle in general. We have noticed that now people are slowing down a bit more though – no more crazy hectic schedules! Finding time to splurge on adding comfort elements to their home is now on people’s minds. They are spending more and more on furniture and they also expect more. Bringing luxury into their home is important, but not necessarily at a high price. Furniture retailers are expected to provide that little extra luxury without also adding to the ticket price.
What kinds of trends is BoConcept experiencing in Europe, America?
We reflect the mega-trends from all around the world in our collections. Our designers travel regularly to get inspiration for each new item of furniture or accessory. One trend is the desire for people to have hotel or lounge/club like atmospheres in their homes. One of our new beds this year reflects this with a thick headboard in white or black leather look with buttons. (Visual can be provided)
Aside from that another group of people are looking to have a more natural/globe-trotter look in their homes reflecting their experiences and interests in different cultures and this can be reflected in art or accessories or actual furniture pieces themselves.
Who are some of the known designers BoConcept is working with?
Morten Georgsen, Anders NÃ¸rgaard, Jose Garcia .
Is there any background on where inspiration is coming from for new designs?
Our designers and product managers travel the world searching for inspiration and spot the trends through magazines, the fashion industry, modernist architecture, and big furniture fairs.
Is BoConcept focusing on products for small space living like convertible sofa beds, expandable dining tables?
At BoConcept our key strength is that we know city life. Our stores are located in some of the trendiest urban neighborhoods around the world so we know what a lifesaver a few extra square feet of space can be in a small apartment – no matter if it’s Tokyo, Los Angeles or London. We offer smart, functional solutions for small spaces. City dwellers have fallen for products like:
â€¢ The functional coffee table – Occa 764. It is a storage coffee table perfect to hide away things like remote controls or magazines while still having them within reaching distance. The added functional bonus however is that the top of the coffee table can be raised to provide a comfortable height for eating or laptop work while sitting in your sofa.
â€¢ The Versa sleeper sofa is designed for those who don’t want to sacrifice the look of the living room for the convenience of having a sleeper. In a few simple steps you can change the sofa into a sleeper. The overall look and design of the Versa is for studio/ apartment living as it has a light trendy look.
â€¢ Xtra is a convertible twin sized bed hidden under the trendy slipcover of an ottoman. You can select the cover from our vast range of fabrics to match your style and home.
â€¢ The Limo platform bed has sleek storage drawers that are so well incorporated into the minimalist look of the bed that you would never guess that all the bed linen and blankets are hidden underneath the bed.
â€¢ And finally, we have a great range of expandable dining tables that can seat 8 when closed or up to 12 when expanded.
What success and growth has BoConcept experienced with their specialty stores?
The first BoConcept brand store opened its doors in Paris in 1993. Today we have stores and studios in 48 different countries all over the world. The company is growing and our expansion plans for the next few years look quite promising – North America is one of the key markets set for high expansion – for example over the past few months we have opened up stores in cities like Los Angeles, New York, Dallas and Houston. Over the coming months expect to see new stores popping up across the country – San Francisco is the next store slated to open which we are very excited about.
Has BoConcept adopted any efforts towards “green” and environmentally conscious manufacturing and materials?
This is not a new subject or “fad” for us. We are a Danish company (one of the many environmentally conscious countries in Europe) so this has always just been a part of the values we hold true in both our personal and business lives. Environmentally friendly manufacturing is essential for us. All our packaging is from recycled cardboard, the wood production is sourced from plantation grown trees, our UV-lacquers are non-toxic and the heating in the manufacturing facilities is with natural gas. Many stores across Europe already use paper shopping bags and we hope to roll this out as a worldwide initiative in the not-to-distant future.