Ulla Johnson collaborated with Rafael de Cárdenas—known for his work that balances modernity with sensuality— to create a tranquil environment that will host industry retail appointments. Underscoring the importance of physical surroundings, the feminine and effortless ambience of the space reflects both Johnson’s personal aesthetic and the brand’s spirit.
Restful, neutral tones of blush, bone, and sand establish a timeless environment of lightness and levity. A decadent antiqued silver-gilded display niche in the expansive lounge is outfitted with a hanging rod of satin-finished brass to showcase key items from the collection.
Functionality and beauty are paid equal consideration. The lofty, sun-drenched showroom offers sweeping skyline views to the North and East, a vista particularly resonant with Johnson and de Cárdenas both of whom are native New Yorkers. Airy interiors flow from one zone to another, subtly differentiated with custom-designed shelving in marble and satin unlacquered brass, and with variations in ceiling height. An intimate reception area is dressed with a curved reception desk with fluted plaster finish in figured avodire wood. A pair of hand-travished screen doors in Filipino mahogany, produced by local woodworkers Green River Projects, divides the reception area from the spacious lounge.
Techniques & Fabrications
“Integrity of materials is of utmost importance to me. Within both the collections and our interiors, I am always very interested in using natural and hand-touched materials and finishes that possess a lasting and unique character. Travertine, marble, gold leaf, wood, brass, and plaster all have a tactile energy and a timeless sense of luxury. It is very exciting to explore layering them in ways that both honour their history and feel unexpected and modern.” —Ulla Johnson
Furniture & Objects
Vintage brass and milk glass globe Stilnovo sconces and a Rafael de Cárdenas custom- designed sofa wrapped in Dedar tiger silk velvet feature in the reception area. A sweeping undulating sofa in blush mohair velvet, accompanied by two solid lace wood coffee tables—all custom-designed by de Cárdenas—provides a welcoming focal point and comfortable seat in the lounge. Custom avodire wood work tables with cuboid totem legs, complemented with Mario Bellini Cab chairs in natural leather, furnish the showroom. A miniature lounge area within the showroom comprises a pair of vintage Gerard Lange for De Sede sofas, reupholstered in Dedar bouclé wool; a custom coffee table in laminated glass and bronze; and a traditional Tuareg bamboo-and-leather rug, reflecting Johnson’s passion for travel.
Working with expert artisans and celebrating the hand of the maker is central to Johnson’s collection, and this ethos extends to the showroom design. Johnson and de Cárdenas’s showroom collaborators include: Custom screens and door handles by Green River Project, hand-woven window blinds by Alexis Brown Interior Design, and glass tiles by Sicis.