marni chairs

by Grace Bonney

One of the more interesting submissions we received this week was a new collection of seating from the Italian fashion house Marni. I’ve always associated Marni with great color blocking, so it was cool to see that same style applied to a line of 100 new chair designs. But what was more interesting was learning that the chairs were produced by former Columbian prisoners. Marni is working with local charities there to employ former prisoners and help them settle back into social and working life. They created all 100 of these chairs using metal and multi-colored PVC threads, and each will be on display at Salone Internazionale del Mobile 2012. I tend to be slightly dubious about work like this because I wonder how much these makers are being paid versus the final cost, but I think it’s great to see a fashion house working with a community of people who could be helped by programs that offer jobs and training. More details will be published soon on Marni’s online magazine, ANTICAMERA 2. Until then, you can click here for more info on Marni. xo, grace

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  • Love the colors! These chairs were a staple in every household when I was young – they were weaved in rattan and were perfect as lounging chairs for grandpapas everywhere!

  • Grace – I appreciate the sensitivity of your comment about being dubious about these types of prisoner/worker projects. But I want to note that this blog regularly features products that are beautifully/cleverly designed but not necessarily ethically produced. Almost any product that is not also made by a designer-maker, or at least made by a company that is transparent and accountable re: fair working wages and conditions, is a product that we should be equally “dubious” about. (And to your point about the relationship between retail price and worker wages, sadly, that applies to much of what we buy.) It seems unfair to make a point of singling out an arrangement where at least one of the parties is making an attempt at social justice.

    • Heather

      I appreciate and agree with your point – its always good to keep an eye on the production behind any product we post.

      That said, I don’t assume or think most of the things we post fall into that “dubious” category because we primarily post handmade and indie work and the maker and seller are often the same person.


  • I am Colombian and would like to buy one for my old age. Where can I buy one in Los Angeles area U.S.A.? I would love to relive my childhood.

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