Raf Simons and Kvadrat’s New Shaker-Inspired Launch Goes Beyond Fabric | Architectural Digest

Despite their long relationship, this is the first time Simons has devised an entirely new type of product for Kvadrat. However, the idea of ​​branching out, he admits, had been swirling around for several years. “I didn’t want to do something simple like a tote bag,” he recalls of early brainstorms. “I didn’t want to design a product that made no sense for me, and I didn’t feel like doing a piece of furniture. I only wanted to do something a step further and think about how people live their domestic environment.”

The series is available in Kvadrat’s Vidar 4 fabric in pink, black, or white.

Photography courtesy of Kvadrat

A contemporary reinterpretation of the Shaker rail felt like a natural choice, not only because of Simons’ longtime fascination with the movement but also because he saw an opportunity to create a new way of interacting with objects within the home. “I am not the kind of fashion designer who is interested in doing an object that is going to sit in an edition of eight in a gallery,” he asserts. “That just doesn’t speak to me at all.”

The collection’s vertical newspaper rack, shown in the pink fabric colourway.

Photography courtesy of Kvadrat

Simons’s excursion into product design, namely experimental storage systems, isn’t so surprising. Prior to embarking on a career in fashion, Simons studied industrial design at Genk’s Luca School of Arts, which left him with a deep reverence for 20th-century art and design—the radical, futuristic inventions of Joe Colombo, particularly the adaptable domestic system presented at his 1969 Visiona 1 exhibition; the meticulous leather-working of French decorative designer Jacques Adnet; and the art of American minimalists like Donald Judd and John McCracken—which, in addition to the Shakers’ intuitive functionalism and economy of form, Simons cites as references he looked to while developing his new system.

Simons says he envisions different uses for the design, depending on its location within a home, and has devised a series of accompanying accessories: for the living room, a magazine holder, wool throws, and matching pillows; for the entryway, a coordinated key holder, shopping bag, and slippers. “Because at the end of the day,” he muses, “an interesting and important object is one that you use all the time.”

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