As you can see from the opening collage for our Natural State style story, which our Vice President/Creative Director Cecil Adams identified for 2020, there’s a soulfulness to this trend that was born in the earth and appeals to the softer senses. The declaration by Ralph Waldo Emerson—“Nature always wears the color of the spirit”—is so apropos to the Natural State products we are releasing this fall.
At One with Nature
Cecil notes, “Natural State is all about utilizing materials that are either in their natural state or made to look as though they are in their natural state.” He cites rope, rattan, natural iron, brass, leather, terracotta, and wood—many of the materials we’ve used to create lighting, accessories, mirrors, and furniture that have a natural feel. “The addition of white to the mix makes it feel fresh and modern,” he notes. “Much of this design trend takes its cues from the 1970’s, an era when natural materials were rediscovered for their unique properties, and celebrated in fashion and home.”
He also explains how the use of natural materials allows us to highlight many of the handicrafts born and nurtured in the countries in which our products are made. “The Philippines, India, Vietnam, and Indonesia,” he adds, “all have excellent skills and resources to provide for a multitude of products in this trend.” The accessories category is one that is rich in natural materials and artisanal traditions in these countries. The bone, terracotta, wood, and bronze objets d’art have loads of personality. Among our new fall introductions that fit perfectly within Natural State are several of our bestsellers during High Point Market, including the Chadee mirror, the Mereworth Chandelier, and the Torquay Table Lamp.
With a shape that celebrates the classic starburst mirror, the Chadee Mirror offers a twist on the tried-and-true design with its undulating rays rendered in whitewashed reclaimed wood. The spikes are made of tiny rolling pins that were used to flatten chapati bread, then bleached. The whitewashed decorative mirror will be more versatile than its formal sisters.
The Mereworth Chandelier has an oblong wrought iron frame around which natural abaca rope has been painstakingly wrapped to create its shade. The rope chandelier emits a warm glow thanks to the color of the abaca. The material also lends the chandelier a nautical feel that makes it perfect for seaside retreats and oceanfront homes.
Our Torquay Table Lamp is one of our creations that illustrates the skill of our artisans who weave natural materials. The rope table lamp has a rectangular body that is woven from natural water hyacinth, the chevron pattern creating a earthy texture. We’ve topped the elemental table lamp with an off-white linen shade.
Also among our new introductions that fit into this style story are:
Clarence Mallari, who designed our Menorca Chandelier, says of its inspiration: “Watching football is always exciting, and I decided I wanted to create a chandelier in the shape of the ball. This makes the rope chandelier special because, just as you have to be a trained professional to throw the ball right, you have to be an artisan to wrap the abaca rope around the metal laser-cut frame in this odd open shape so that it’s seamless.” The contemporary silver leaf finish is a luminous touch.
Our Rousham Chandelier, designed by Clarence Mallari, has an unusual accent on its fabric shade created by the twine panel made from recycled paper that is twisted and tightly wrapped around a metal frame. The panel made from the sustainable material, which is affixed to the center of the shade, is then coated with a sealant to protect it from moisture. The beige chandelier is suspended with aircraft cable and has a sugar white finish on the interior of the shade, which brightens the light.
Our Dalmeny Table lamp is made of whitewashed rattan that looks both sleek and modern. The warmth of the natural wood base is an attractive counterpoint to the pale striated column of the beige table lamp that is topped with a Marshmallow Burlap shade.
Knitting itself a perfect profile, our Mamora Pale Table Lamp is made of ceramic with a pale glaze. This table lamp with its slight feminine feel perches atop a metal base. The texture in the natural linen shade perfectly complements the leafy trellis pattern that runs along the body of the peanut-shaped lamp.
A nod to one of the world’s seafaring port cities, our Lisbon Floor Lamp, which is made of wrought iron in new brass and satin black finishes, has a stem covered in rattan to bring a nautical feel to its nature. Several design notes worth mentioning on this rattan floor lamp are the curvature of the stem that has several sections wrapped horizontally in black, the shape of and details on the off-white linen shade, and the black finish at the top of the base.
Our Modernist Bone and Horn Boxes come in a set of two. This very conceptual design has a mosaic made from pieces of hand-cut buffalo horn applied to a Mango wood structure. These decorative boxes with their modernist pattern represent a new approach to contemporary design in handicrafts in India. We also have a decorative tray with this mosaic pattern.
Fresh and on-trend, our collection of Happy 60 Vases, which includes the Happy 60 Tapered Tall Vase, is a reminder of the carefree times during the 1960s. The artistry employed to create these terracotta decorative vases is called a wax-resist technique. All of the surface areas that the artisan decides will be left unglazed are covered by wax so that the glazing material cannot give it the sheen that comes with it. Though the beige and white pattern is our nod to the ultra-60s, the shapes of the decorative accents have been modernized with cleaner lines. This set of vases illustrates Cecil’s point that white brings a fresh, modern feeling to any product that was inspired by nature.
In the video above, Aimee is in our Natural State room at the High Point showroom showing off the attributes of the new Bramford cabinet and nightstand in a wheat finish. The lovely motif on the door fronts of the cabinet and nightstand were inspired by a luxurious handbag she spotted. Made of mahogany with a light wheat finish, the pattern on the doors is made of interwoven taupe and ivory leather, and the ferrules on the legs are made of brass in a light antique brass finish. This design was first introduced with the leather woven chair we debuted several markets ago. With its removable wine rack, the cabinet makes an elegant bar cabinet.
We hope you enjoyed this look at our products that have nature to thank for their inspiration. To see several other style stories our products inspired this fall, click through to the post on the modern farmhouse trend and the black and white modern trend. It’s difficult to believe we are approaching Thanksgiving week next week, but here we go! Though many of us have been working from home time has flown just as quickly as it always has this year. Before you know it, we will be saying Happy New Year (and likely meaning it more than ever with 2020 in the rearview mirror)!