Gateshead furniture firm expands with London showroom

The Original Sofa Company in Gateshead will be opening new premises on Lower Sloane Street

David Robinson owner of The Original Sofa Co
David Robinson owner of The Original Sofa Co

A North East furniture crafting house with a reputation for producing some of the world’s finest Chesterfields is expanding with its first London showroom in Chelsea.

The Original Sofa Company in Gateshead is the only crafting house in Britain to produce top-of-the-range artisan sofas and chairs entirely using 19th Century hand-crafted methods and materials. Its new showroom on Lower Sloane Street will be nestled among some of the world’s finest brands including Harrods, Prada and the famous Saatchi Gallery.

However, its crafting house and second showroom will remain at Team Valley, Gateshead, with the addition of two new upholsterers and opportunities for new apprenticeships in the pipeline.

The small crafting house has countless International VIP clients, including Harry Potter star Jason Isaacs, Gladiator actress Connie Nielson and director Will Butler Sloss. It has created bespoke pieces for the castle of a Saudi oil baron, Harvard University’s staff faculty and the Urban Retreat at Harrods, as well as producing a gold leather sofa for Alan Carr’s Chatty Man programme.

Company director David Robinson said: “The new showroom is incredibly exciting. Everybody knows Lower Sloane Street and its association with luxury and for us, it’s a home from home. Once the London showroom is established, we will be looking at New York and Beijing next.”

The Original Sofa Company’s methods are particularly labour intensive, with one Chesterfield taking up to 13 working days to create and costing up to £15,000.

The sofas are made using old-fashioned hammer and tack construction methods, with traditional eight point hand-tied loose coil springs. The filling is coconut hair and horse tail, and the top 1% of the world’s finest leather is used, before the furniture is finished to clients’ colour specifications using a highly-skilled hand dyeing process.

The company also has access to a wide variety of quality designer fabrics such as Porter & Harding, Missoni, Colefax & Fowler, J Brown, Jim Dickens and Harrisons of Saville Row.

Robinson added: “There’s nothing like what we do already out there, We don’t believe in mass production. Our products are quite literally crafted on a personal level for our clients. We want our furniture going through Christie’s doors in 50 to 80 years time, as these legacy pieces will be the antiques of the future.”

And the sofa firm have taken a rather different approach to their promotional product pictures, going al fresco



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