Lattice work

Cape Town-based Leg Studios launches a range of decor products inspired by nomadic African patterns.

After eight years of designing installations and exhibitions for the marketing and events industry, the creative team at Cape Town-based Leg Studios have launched its first range of small furniture and décor pieces.

“The speed at which our industry works is very fast paced and we were looking for a way of slowing ourselves down and considering detail a little more,” says architect Leon Erasmus. With partners Giulia Odendaal, a theatrical and set design specialist, and industrial designer Tim Richert, they have launched a new brand LSD (Leg Studios Design). Their first collection features side-tables, lamps and storage accessories.

The Bend table, Carry table and Halos lamp use laser-cut metal finished in reflective surfaces or a choice of black or white. Odendaal, who designed the geometric latticework, says she was inspired by nomadic African patterns.

“Furniture allows us to ponder, play and have a point of view outside of the world that we normally work in,” she says. “Slowly, we’ve started to focus on the finer details and decided to spread our wings into fields adjacent to the one we knew.”

The strong, simplified forms and minimal design of the Butcher Block and Brut tables create a sense of weight. The choice of materials – wood and metal in the former, concrete and metal in the latter – dominate the pieces.

The unifying factor in the collection is the layering of highly finished parts with honest raw materials. The details are sharp and the lines simple; there is little fuss, even in its complexity. As Erasmus points out, “Our pieces needed to be accessible, easy to understand but at the same time well-considered, quirky and on trend.”

Making use of their existing synergy, the three designers began to work separately and on coming together again, realised that a common thread had started to develop.

A range was sort of born from the fact that we streamlined our materials, textures and patterns, says Erasmus.

The result is a consolidated range that nonetheless showcases the individual identity of each creator.

The studio’s most recent piece, the Soft Stool, is a collaboration with fashion designer Thabo Makhetha, who launched her Basotho blanket-inspired designs as an Emerging Creative at Design Indaba Expo 2013.

They thrive on collaboration, they say, so it will be interesting to watch the development of their work.

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