Grand cabinets by Mathieu Gustafsson and Niklas Karlsson

Milan 2013: these cabinets by Swedish designer Mathieu Gustafsson and furniture maker Niklas Karlsson are inspired by the use of woven rattan and brass clasps in vintage handbags.

Grand cabinets by Mathieu Gustafsson and Niklas Karlsson

The cabinets are the first pieces in Grand, a collection launched by Mathieu Gustafsson and Niklas Karlsson at Stockholm Furniture Fair in February.

Grand cabinets by Mathieu Gustafsson and Niklas Karlsson

Based on a classic handbag made by Swedish travel and accessories brand Palmgrens, the Light cabinet is made from woven rattan set into a grid of rectangles inside a white or grey birch frame.

Grand cabinets by Mathieu Gustafsson and Niklas Karlsson

The white pine Lock cabinet sits on raised legs and has a brass clasp to keep the doors closed.

Grand cabinets by Mathieu Gustafsson and Niklas Karlsson

The collection will be shown at Ventura Lambrate in Milan from 9 to 14 April. The cabinets aren't in production at present but can be ordered directly from the designers.

Grand cabinets by Mathieu Gustafsson and Niklas Karlsson

Other cabinets we've featured include one with a rough surface that resembles choppy ocean waves and another that opens up like a giant sewing box – see all cabinets.

Grand cabinets by Mathieu Gustafsson and Niklas Karlsson

Photographs are by Petter Cohen.

Here's some more information from the designers:


Grand is a high-end furniture initiative created by designer Mathieu Gustafsson and cabinet maker Niklas Karlsson. The name Grand alludes to both the design and the craftsmanship ambition in the project. All production is made in Sweden by cabinet maker Niklas Karlsson under the artistic direction of designer Mathieu Gustafsson.

Grand cabinets by Mathieu Gustafsson and Niklas Karlsson

The ambition of Grand is to create furniture without compromising on craftsmanship, design or material. In a sentence: contemporary design with classic high-end craftsmanship.

Grand cabinets by Mathieu Gustafsson and Niklas Karlsson

In the design process, every material is chosen for its aesthetic and functional qualities.The right material in the right place, regardless of parameters such as pricing or current trends. Everything is subordinated to the artistic vision and the correct craftsmanship methods. "When creating our own brand we didn't want to compete in low pricing, we rather wanted to contribute in artistic expression and quality."

Grand cabinets by Mathieu Gustafsson and Niklas Karlsson

Above: the Palmgrens rattan bag

The first series of furniture, launched at the Stockholm Furniture Fair, are cabinets designed with details inspired by handbags. Many accessory details have parallels to the world of furniture and allow themselves to be translated into other forms with similar functions. It's when these details are incorporated into a new context that they become interesting objects.