Category Archives: Trade Fairs

The Cool Charm of Catifa’s New Colours


Arper have taken their famous Catifa 46 and Catifa 53 chair collections up a notch (as if that were possible) through the release of two brand new colour ranges for the celebrated chairs.

The legendary Italian manufacturer has many distinguished attributes and their use of colour is one of their finest as the new Catifas will attest. The colourways differ between the 46 and 53 designs, with each boasting tones that hold their own as striking standalone pieces whilst perfectly coexisting in any combination.


Catifa 46 is available in a playful, on-trend range with pretty 1950’s tones and cool pastels reigning supreme. These include Old Pink, Petroleum Blue, Yellow, Ivory, Smoke, Green, Black, Anthracite, Red, White and Moka. The palette applies to the polypropylene shell as well as powdercoat options for 4-leg and sled bases. Catifa 46 is still available with a single colour or bi-colour shell option which combines your choice of colour in a gloss finish on the back of the shell, whilst the interior has a matte white finish.


Catifa 53 is available in a sophisticated, masculine palette of earthy shades like Yellow-Gold, Anthracite, Ivory, Sand, Caramel, White, Black and Moka. The Catifa 53 is now available with a single colour polypropylene shell only.

Arper do it again with refined, effortless cool that is totally hot.

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Salone del Mobile 2016

Nani_lattice_2As a group of furniture professionals at UFL, our muse is the international circuit of furniture fairs, of which Salone del Mobile in Milan is the absolute darling. We visit every year; to seek inspiration and draw from new trends, new ideas and new products. We see our role in the milieu, as that of curators; selecting only the choicest offerings from simply thousands of new items, bringing them home to New Zealand to share with our local cliental.

Salone de Mobile is growing. It seems like the industry is adhering to its former glory and this year Milan was simply bursting out of her skin. Outstanding events and happenings were woven into the entire fabric of the city, from tiny apartments in Brera to the historical buildings within the city’s centre. Even the post-industrial warehouses of Ventura Lambrate held startling exhibitions of new products, alongside the delicious art galleries and the main Rho fairgrounds themselves. Salone 2016 truly surpassed our expectations with the vast array of superb installations, breath-taking new releases and magnificent parties.

Here are some of the highlights from Milano 2016:

Salon del Mobile









Andreu World_stand


Arper_Catifa53_new colours





Catifa_new colours



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Basque In It


UFL have been supplying New Zealanders with contract furniture by Enea for nearly two decades. The reason for our enduring love affair is because we adore everything they do. Hailing from the Basque country; a region of northern Spain, famous for its tough, innovative and cultured people, Enea do things their way. Whether it be language, food, music, fashion or design, the Basque’s create their own rules and Enea’s furniture is no different. Synonymous with utility, and sparse, contemporary design, Enea has collaborated with world-renown designers like Josep Lluscà, Gabriel Teixidó and Lievore Altherr Molina over the years.


2015 has so far been an astounding year for Enea. Not only have they launched a new corporate identity, they also presented a series of stunning new products at Salone del Mobile in Milan.
Their new brand boasts a lower-case typography, again embodying the company’s Basque origins as a durable and distinctive character. Reinforcing their values based on geographical location, the firm’s concern for ecology and moving away from traditionalism, the brand is unadorned and with strong shapes.


At Milan Furniture Fair, ENEA presented the Ema chair and their latest developments in the popular Lottus series, focusing on solutions for the Lottus Lounge, Lottus Conference and Lottus Wood, and a new table and bar-leaner, the Lottus AL. The Lottus family continues to evolve and the designs are more refined, classic, and suitable for a myriad of chic environments that require simple but distinctive furniture options.
The colour range of the Ema chair was directly instructed by the primary colours that exist in Enea’s factory. Green, orange, yellow and blue are incorporated into the communicative universe of Enea, inspired by the walls, floors, and the skip bins. The stunning product photography is set in real identity environments, areas where both Ema and the Lottus chair collections naturally fit.



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Mix me Mélange!


Family-owned Spanish rug company, Nanimarquina chose the Salone del Mobile 2015 to reveal their latest collection of handmade rugs from Pakistan. This year’s presentation was Mélange, a 20 strong collection of rugs with a bold geometric theme and pared back colour palette in red, black and creams, designed by New York fashion designer, Sybilla.
The exhibition was a huge patchwork of rugs; layered into towering piles, hung from the ceiling and covering coordinated poufs which were strewn across the floor, in direct reference to the oriental culture which produced them, in which everything is done almost at ground level.

Mélange is a fine balance of tradition and modernism, elegance and homeliness, craft and design, past and future. The ambience of the Nani’s product purveys the company’s connection to tradition, craftsmanship and the ancestral handcrafted techniques of Pakistan. Nanimarquina have strong heritage of Global thinking. This being one of their values — an awareness of others and trying to do their bit to improve the lives of people who live in the areas where the rugs are produced.

Nanimarquina’s work with organisations such as Care&Fair, or the implementation of initiatives such as the Kala Project, allow them to take a step further in improving standards of living and working conditions, and helping to build a brighter future for those directly involved in the process of producing Nanimarquina rugs.

You can check out the collection here-


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Best In Show

LZF LAMPSLZF Koi by Inocuo The Sign & LZF Lab 02LZF Koi by Inocuo The Sign & LZF Lab 05

The Koi suspension lamp is the creation of a very special collaboration between LZF Lab and Inocuo The Sign.

Unveiled at Milan Furniture Fair 2015, the enormous carp captured imaginations and wowed visitors with its ingenuity, presence and sheer technical bravado, to take centre stage as the show’s most spectacular and ambitious piece.
From Koi’s inception to launch at Milan was a six year journey, the lamp being finally resolved and completed only due to the technical expertise of some of the best designers and craftspeople in Spain.
The inspiration for Koi came from an intertwining wood system and the transparencies it produced when lit. Manolo Martin, a famous local craftsman who knew how to create volumes with strips of wood, collaborated with LZF to build this fantastical fish from its skeleton outwards. Consisting of a wooden frame – constructed using traditional Valencian carpentry techniques – that supports the ‘scales’, which are made from dozens of small over-lapped pieces of wood veneer. The quality of the craftsmanship is especially noticeable in the detail of the head, tail and fins. Inside the body, LED technology is the source of light. In addition, the Koi has two independent control systems to regulate the light intensity through Bluetooth devices.

The result is a stunning handcrafted piece, measuring more than three metres from head to tail, that’s beautiful and powerful both lit and unlit. A creature made of wood and light; half-lamp, half-sculpture that drifts silently overhead with an aura all of its own.

You can watch the Koi short film by Inocuo The Sign here:

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Designday Pro 2015

First of its kind, Designday Pro, held late March, was an industry only day, a great precursor to the highly anticipated annual Urbis Design Day.

For this event, UFL teamed up with at work*, the commercial fabric division of Textilia, to focus on collaborative working environments, to share our vision of activity based working and to introduce new products and fabrics for innovative working spaces.

Tetromino X60

This philosophy of ABW is based on the concept of designing places to work, not simply workplaces. UFL showcased three new products from Derlot Editions; Prisma, Tab, and Tetronimo x60.


The highlight of the day was the presentations from our two international guest speakers, Dirk du Toit, Senior Designer from Derlot Editions and Brigitte Heimrath, Business Development Director for Asia Pacific of Camira UK, both of whom were on-site to present their products and discuss the concepts behind them.


Dirk du Toit said that, ‘What we’ve aimed to achieve at Derlot Editions with Prisma, Tetromino X60 and Tab is to create exciting options for designing alternative working areas or spaces. All three collections are perfectly suited to create informal breakout areas, a quiet study corner or collaborative meeting space… the combinations are only limited to your own imagination…” Each collection was upholstered in Camira fabric supplied by at work*.


In her inspirational speech on Camira fabrics, Brigitte Heimrath shared how flora and fauna cross-fertilise, creating their own harmonious colours and textures. These new fabrics enable Textilia to bring the presence of nature and a tangible sense of well-being into the office workscape. Large scale plaids and diagonal checks inspired by catwalk couture and contemporary fashion houses such as Burberry and Paul Smith, were married with intriguing, complementary plains to bring fashion’s flexibility, modularity and creativity to office and contract interiors. The result? Relaxed workspaces with a cross-over domestic feel.


Please contact UFL Group for more information on featured products.

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Kinesit – The Winner of Orgatec!

The office chair Kinesit, designed by Lievore Altherr Molina,was awarded the coveted prize of the architecture journal AIT “Innovationspreis Architektur+Office” at Orgatec 2014, the world’s leading international trade fair for the Modern Office & Object sector.
Kinesit is the first Arper’s office chair that is one hundred-percent compliant with regulatory requirements. Light and minimal in design, the chair seat and back are fully adjustable allowing it to conform to individual body types for optimal comfort, even during more time consuming projects. The chair features a built-in mechanism hidden discreetly under the seat that provides synchronized movement and seat height command. An invisible, adjustable lumbar support is concealed within the backrest’s thin frame to give additional flexibility and comfort. Kinesit is customizable with all fabric collections in Arper’s catalogue. Kinesit chair is available in three seatback heights and a range of bases, and with or without arm rests for a range of possibilities. A wide selection of upholstery fabrics and leathers in Arper’s full range of colors, textures and tones, or in the standard mesh covering, make Kinesit chair customizable to diverse design applications and interior spaces.  Kinesit will be in production by April 2015.
The jury issued the following statement to motivate the award: “Kinesit Arper is impressive for the high level of comfort achieved thanks to the fully adjustable seat and backrest, making this office chair extremely simple and easy to use. In particular, the jury praised the characteristic silhouette of the seat and backrest which marks Kinesit out from other office chairs characterized by a forced functionality. The jury admired Kinesit’s design, described as simple and young”.
The jury, composed of leading experts in the furnishing sector, evaluated the 64 applications from 40 companies. The products that competed for the “Architecture+Office Innovation Award” were on display in stand 11.2 of the Fair and will also be published in a special issue of AIT 12/2014 and in “xia intelligente architektur ”.
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A taste of Orgatec

Both fairs, Orgatec and Interieur, demonstrated how the commercial office environment is changing. Although we have observed the trend towards more collaborative working places unfolding over the past two years, here we saw a definite move towards quieter, more contemplative spaces; there will be more spaces where groups can gather, inform themselves and collaborate.  And technology is becoming more integrated than ever before. Although it sounds like a dichotomy, there will be more privacy when we desire it and more public interaction when we need it.

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Kortrijk on Monday, Koln on Tuesday, Auckland on Wednesday.

One of the great privileges of my job, apart from working with some fabulous clients and a bunch of really nice people here at UFL, is that I occasionally get to visit the European furniture fairs to assess trends, discover new product and ensure that we are completely up to date with our European manufacturers.
Last month I visited two trade fairs back to back; Interieur in Kortrijk, Belgium and Orgatec in Koln, Germany to discover the newest innovations in interior styling and furniture. And on my day off, I visited the design showrooms in Antwerp – just to ensure not a minute was wasted. Whilst Orgatec is not to be missed; it’s a conventional, large commercial fair that displays worldwide trends in desking, tables and large furniture pieces, Interieur is its hip, smarter younger brother. In Kortrijk I saw more cutting edge design, more focus on detail and wide use of marble, stone and glass – all with incredible styling.
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Doshi Levien for Nanimarquina

At the very beginning of the project, Nanimarquina decided to create a series of rugs that evoke the sensual and shiny world of tribal folk embroidery of India. They already had in mind intricately hand crafted embroideries made by the Nomadic community of the Rabaris from Kutch region. Nipa’s aunt had an amazing embroidery workshop in Ahmedabad, with 25 highly skilled craftswomen, who were all experts in hand embroidery, working with glistening mirrors, silk and cotton thread and metallic sequins amongst other non-precious materials. The women sat together on rugs on the floor, surrounded by these jewel like elements scattered around them as they worked. Often collaborating in groups, the intricate embroideries took several days to complete.
“We wanted our collection for Nani Marquina to reference the unfinished embroideries like studies of different techniques in progress, as they gradually emerge over time. The spontaneous compositions of the rugs embody the serendipity and freedom to improvise inherent in each step of a handmade piece; Joyful, irreverent and unique.” Doshi Levien
The Rabari collection consists of three carpets made from 100% New Zealand wool, handmade in India by using the hand knotted and hand woven Sumak techniques.

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