The House the 50s Built

by ercol on June 15, 2012

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We’ve been enjoying the Channel 4 series, The House the 50s Built, showing the transformation in houses that took place from the drab, post-war austerity to a bright, modern interior during the 50s.  The widespread introduction of many labour saving gadgets – things we take for granted, like fridges, washing machines, hoovers, revolutionised people’s lives at home.

Furniture also saw a huge sea-change, with sleek, modern designs, replacing the more heavy, formal furniture.  In this week’s episode, presenter Brendan Walker, shows the revolution in the living room – a revolution that ercol played a large part in.  Brendan demonstrates the impact that foam had on furniture, making some interiors for the ercol studio couch.

Sophie Conran remarks on the international influences – “ercolani, an Italian chap who worked here, made lovely bent wooden structures…very beautiful, very curvy, very light”.

Earlier this decade ercol was encouraged by fashion designer Margaret Howell, to reintroduce some of these pieces from our 50s back catalogue – and so was born the Originals collection.  As a result you can still buy today, many of our iconic designs from that period – the studio couch, butterfly and stacking chair.  Our Windsor range of furniture, which epitomised the move to lighter, modern furniture, was first introduced in the 1950s and whilst it has undergone a continuous evolution to adapt to changing lifestyles, has never gone out of production and is still one of our most popular ranges to this day.

Ercol today is very proud of our design heritage, with timeless designs reflected in our Originals and Windsor ranges, whilst we also look to the future with ranges like Artisan and the Treviso desk – collaborations with leading British designers of today.

We recently got Edward Tadros, Chairman of ercol and grandson of ercol’s founder, Lucian Ercolani, to talk about the Originals range in this video:

ercol Originals range

ercol's chairman, Edward Tadros, reviews the ercol Originals collection

 

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