Milan 2012: this armchair with a pleated leather seat by London designer Benjamin Hubert was inspired by sleeves with puffed shoulders on Italian Renaissance clothing.
The Juliet chair features leather stretched over the base to expose the wooden frame underneath, while the seat is covered in squashy leather pleated in a triangular pattern.
Hubert's was the winning design in a competition where twelve designers were invited to design an armchair to celebrate Italian brand Poltrona Frau's 100th birthday.
Here's some more information from Hubert:
Benjamin Hubert x Poltrona Frau
Benjamin Hubert has won the international competition to find Poltrona Frau’s Centenary armchair. The armchair for the 100 year old company that will be launched at Salone Del Mobile, enters into its iconic limited edition collection to represent its history and future.
The brief of the competition was to utilise the traditional upholstery techniques under the theme ‘a chair to spend time in’ and judged under the categories of; formal appearance, representation of the given theme, use and interpretation of leather and comfort.
Juliet, the chair awarded winner of the competition, is inspired by the Italian renaissance fashion detail the ‘Juliet sleeve’ a sleeve which tightly fits the arm and has a large de constructed ‘puff’ on the shoulder.
This inspiration was used to communicate the properties of leather upholstery. The outside of the chair utilises the flexibility and tensile strength of leather to describe a fluted traditional timber frame work where the shape of the timber can clearly be seen through the tight leather covering. This is contrasted by a ‘tri-pleated’ generous sitting area with a soft and loose appearance. This deconstructed area is used to describe the comfort of the chair. The shape of the sitting area is ‘wide screen’ to allow the user to sit in multiple positions in line with how people really use and miss-use furniture.
To celebrate Poltrona Frau’s centenary in 2012 the company “selected 12 of the most “promising young designers” from all over the world to compete in the challenge of designing the Poltrona Frau centenary armchair
The 12 designers include: Benjamin Hubert, Nendo, Stephen Burks, Nika Zupanc, Constance Guisset, Daphna Laurens
The 9 judges: Livia Peraldo Matton - Editor in Chief of Elle Decor Italy, Giulio Cappellini - Creative Director of Cappellini, François-Henry Pinault - Chairman of PPR Group, Jean Nouvel - Architect, Vanessa Friedman - Financial Times Fashion Editor, Anne-Sophie Von Clear - Deputy Director Lifestyle Le Figaro, Walter De Silva - Head Designer of the Audi Brand Group, Ratan Naval Tata - Chairman of Tata Group, Thomas Maier - Bottega Veneta
Materials: Leather,Polyurethane foam, Timber
Dimensions: W1000mm x H750mm x D800mm