Edra puts a new twist on Italian designer furniture
Its openness to new ideas and confidence in its own values go some way to explain the success of the Italian design house Edra. For over 30 years, Edra has been collaborating with famous designers from all over the world to create furniture that consistently challenges established notions of form, function and material. Many of the Italian designer pieces created through these partnerships have long been considered iconic in the world of interior design. Learn more about the brand and its innovations here.
The modular lounge concept On the Rocks is fun and inviting. (Photo: Edra)
Edra: Unconventional and timeless
The name Edra doesn’t actually have Italian roots. The Greek word “έδρα” means “seat” and – in reference to the Greek philosophers – is used to describe a place in which to philosophise and debate. Founded in 1987 by Valerio Mazzei, the company’s mission extends beyond taking a fresh approach to conventional furniture and experimenting with different materials and technologies. Just as ancient Greek wisdom has been quoted through the ages, design objects from Edra are intended to stand the test of time.
Edra doesn’t follow trends but instead uses traditional craftsmanship to produce high-quality pieces of furniture that blend harmoniously into any surroundings. Timeless elegance, a high level of comfort and artistic ambition are the hallmarks of this Italian designer furniture brand. Francesco Binfaré, the Campana brothers and Jacopo Foggini are just a few of the many famous designers Edra has worked with.
From Binfaré to Campana
Italian designer Francesco Binfaré created three sofas for Edra in the early 1990s: the two-piece L’Homme et la Femme, which can be arranged in a variety of ways, the modular Tangeri and the futuristic Angels. These were followed in 2000 by designer sofa Flap , an organically shaped sofa with adjustable backrests, which was exhibited at MOMA. Other highlights include: Pack , a cloud-like lounge concept, the best-selling Sherazade sofa, the somewhat more angular On the Rocks modular sofa and the Stand by Me bed.
Jacopo Foggini’s work extends beyond realising countless projects for world-famous brands, hotels and the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin. He is also involved in a long-standing partnership with Edra, which has given rise to his iconic chairs and armchairs in coloured polycarbonate – Gina , Gilda B , Ella and Alice – as well as the glass Capriccio table. The acclaimed Campana brothers, Humberto and Fernando, have also created numerous designs for Edra that have won multiple awards. These include the unusual, velvety-soft sofas Cipria and Boa , the Cabana bookshelves enveloped in strands of synthetic raffia, and the Corallo bed crafted from gold-plated steel wire.
Craftsmanship and research into new materials
Edra combines traditional craftsmanship with innovation. The company places considerable emphasis on materials research, because the properties of the material and the way it is worked are at the heart of its designs. Edra has even established its own research centre to boost product innovation, leading to the creation of designs like the Smart Cushion , which can be sculpted to meet individual comfort requirements. Hidden joints allow the sofa cushions to be angled forwards, backwards and sideways, as in the case of the Grande Soffice .
Gellyfoam is another innovation developed by Edra. This patented foam is very soft and flexible on one side, while the other side is firm and strong. When you lie down on it, the material supports your body while remaining pleasantly comfortable. The foam has been used for various applications, including the above-mentioned Pack sofa by Francesco Binfaré.
New Italian designer furniture from Edra
The Italian design house has remained true to its values since 1987 – and it never tires of reinventing furnishings. In collaboration with Jacopo Foggini, Edra recently launched its outdoor collection A’mare Lettino Prendisole . A’mare is a play on the words amore (love) and mare (sea) – an homage to love of the sea.
Once again, Italian designer Foggini has used polycarbonate, shaped into intentionally irregular rods and connected using screws to form pieces of furniture. The transparent turquoise colour and the shiny, glass-like material call to mind seawater that has frozen yet appears to flow. The chairs, loungers and tables are extremely weather-resistant, have a timeless elegance and can also be used indoors – making them very well placed to become the Italian brand’s next iconic designs.
Would you like to see even more examples of unique Italian designer furniture? Discover further selected pieces from Edra on ambista .