In New York (and Brooklyn in particular) these days, much ado is made about artisanal goods. The one-time industrial capital of the country is now home to a culture united by a strong penchant for anti-industrialism, lampooned widely by comedians and cultural critics alike. Regardless of how you feel about small-batch mayonnaise, it’s difficult to argue with the value of handmade objects when it comes to furniture.
Egg Collective, a Brooklyn trio of furniture designers who met in architecture school, aspire to reclaim handicraft as an alternative to mass-produced sameness. The group debuted their first collection last week at ICFF, offering a bricolage of original pieces (Oscar, a sandy marble table with a faceted brass base) and refinished antiques (an umbrella stand made of antlers) in an all-white booth hung with art from Chicago photographer Tealia Ellis-Ritter. The collection, which Egg describes as “a mixture of heirloom-quality craft and contemporary design” earned ICFF’s Best New Designer Award.
“We were inspired by rocks, flowers, quarries, a particular picture of a fawn,” write the designers, “as well as the use of materials and detailing in traditional furniture.” Bradford, a system of small tables that aggregate around each other, mimics the growth patterns of precious stones; while Fern, a set of beautifully detailed wood credenzas, lend the collection a distinctly Danish sturdiness. Egg writes that they hope the pieces will become family heirlooms, passed down through families for decades. The whole collection is distinctly personal, as though a living room had been recreated piece-by-piece at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.