Katerina Zachariades, Creative director at Morgan, introduces the Aran Collection

Morgan are Craftspeople. Designers and Makers. A pioneering, family-founded British business, proudly dedicated to the design and manufacturing of high-end, contemporary furniture for design-conscious contract clients around the world. Creative Director, Katerina Zachariades has always been attracted by the challenge of designing furniture for production, which led to becoming Morgan’s Design Director in 1992. During the last 25 years, she has been responsible for the brand and product development at Morgan with both the Morgan studio team and external design collaborations.

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In May Morgan launched their Aran Collection, designed by Morgan Studio, and in collaboration with global leader in contract fabrics, Camira. We sat down with Katerina to learn more about their latest collection!

Katerina Zachariades, Creative Director at Morgan

Please could you introduce yourself and your role at Morgan?

As Morgan’s Creative director, I have been working to expand the number of collaborations with talented product designers while maintaining the ‘family’ aesthetic of the brand. I like to focus on clarity of ideas, simplicity of execution as well as innovation and excellence in manufacture. In parallel with this, the Morgan Studio design team contributes with in house product development, this year enhancing our collections with the new Aran chair.

The Aran collection pushes the boundaries of comfort, form and technology, could you tell us more?

The inspiration for the Aran chair came from the lightness and strength of the technical knitting process. This allowed our design to be minimal and transparent in places, with additional weaving where required for strength and with a simple assembly method onto the frame. The stretch of the fabric adds to the comfort and the aesthetic makes for a versatile product that would suit any contemporary interior, workplace or hospitality.

Morgan is committed to using new technologies such as 3D printing and 3D knitting, why is this an import aspect of your design approach and how do you marry this with traditional manufacturing techniques?

Our strength at Morgan is our expertise in timber and upholstery production. Occasionally, other processes are introduced, especially when they are innovative and sustainable. 3D printing, while still a niche method for furniture, is brilliant because it is an additive manufacturing process, therefore you have zero waste. From a design point of view it offers the possibility for intricate freeform shapes, such as the ones created in our Rio collection.

The 3D knitting manufacture used for the Aran collection allows for a tailored textile form to be developed all in one process. Again, zero waste and easily replaced and recycled. The added bonus is we can use yarn from recycled plastic.

The Aran collection has been designed by Morgan Studio, can you tell me more about the concept behind the form, the design process and the team?

We focused on the lightness and function of the timber form for this chair as well as developing the weave and texture of the knitted component. Together with Camira’s technical expertise, and after several ‘jackets’ were trialled, we ended up with a design that achieved our brief. Visual lightness and comfort without the traditional foam construction.

Morgan supplies furniture across multiple commercial sectors, how do you address cross-sector market appeal within your design brief and product development?

We design and produce furniture for commercial interiors, so we comply with and achieve the additional strength and fire regulations for these sectors. Regarding the aesthetic differentiation, it hardly exists anymore, our products find their way into all the sectors; interiors are now more varied and eclectic and there is a freedom in specification which, in my view, creates more interesting and versatile spaces.

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About Alys Bryan

Alys is a knowledgeable design editor who is focused on instigating conversations, both online and in-person, with industry experts which challenge, educate and advance the commercial interior sector. Her training and 15 years of professional experience as a furniture designer for the commercial sector makes her uniquely placed to lead Design Insider as Editor
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