Find out the story behind Universal Furniture’s award-winning outdoor line

Shannon Lookabill

Significant Level – As of New Year’s Working day, Common Furnishings‘s Shannon Lookabill will formally have a new title, vice president of item development, and the promotion to the company’s senior management group underscores the relevance of Lookabill’s contributions to Universal’s achievement.

Spearheading the design way of the company’s indoor and outside home furnishings strains, Lookabill is also the architect of a number of ISFD Pinnacle Award-winning collections for Common, which include a single for Coastal Residing Outside.

The out of doors class experienced the identical boon as most residence furnishings types for the duration of the pandemic, but the emphasis at Common has often been on building merchandise that would entice and keep retail and style and design business. With that purpose top rated of thoughts, Lookabill spelled out that the development of Coastal Living Outside was a gradual process and incorporated two many years of extensive exploration.

“We frequented shops — both of those home furnishings and outside specialty stores — all around the country, talking with potential buyers about what operates and what does not in this category,” Lookabill explains. “Of training course, the answers diversified tremendously based on the area of the country. Right after filtering by way of all of this information, we established our Coastal Residing Outside assortment which has a great mixture of fully upholstered lounge seating along with teak, aluminum, forged concrete, and wicker materials that enhance 1 one more.”

Universal Household furniture spent two a long time viewing outdoor vendors just before setting up item advancement on Universal’s outside line.

Lookabill pointed out that Common works by using premium Grade-A teak “for a cleaner, most steady all-natural color” as an alternative of decrease quality teak with color variances and smaller sized pieces joined with each other. He added that frames are manufactured of high-good quality aluminum that is precision welded for clear joints and then coated with a top quality German powder coating for toughness and that Common worked with the company’s suppliers to produce custom formulated finishes and woven wicker that complements the teak and aluminum finishes.

For 2023, Lookabill is concentrating on the dining and lounge parts “that are at the centre of comfortable outdoor dwelling.”

“We really feel a good presenting of eating tables and chairs rounded out with a range of lounge seating, both equally thoroughly upholstered, and teak/aluminum paired with pops of attention-grabbing occasional pieces will make exhilaration and gross sales,” he said.

Universal’s target with the out of doors selection is for each individual piece to have a “personality of its individual.”

“Most significant, the household furniture must be cozy, approachable, and built with quality products that will endure all climates,” Lookabill concluded. “Another challenge is to build the selection with its own character so that it does not seem like every little thing else in the out of doors class.

“Lastly, it is critical that all the materials, finishes, and textures enhance each other, enabling the buyer to match or curate to their wished-for aesthetic.”

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