This ’70s Design Staple Got a 2019 Makeover—and It’s Good
You haven’t seen rattan like this.
Updated Sep 29, 2021 7:23 AM
The ’70s have officially made a comeback, and with it comes a whole slew of inspired design moments we’re all too keen on bringing home. Saturated palettes have us reconsidering vibrant combinations such as yellow and orange, and sunken living rooms are once more making their way into the most design-forward interiors.
Enter Sarah Ellison. The talented, Sydney-based designer’s aesthetic marries modern simplicity with a thoughtful ode to the nostalgic. Her recent collection features an inspired blend of pieces that channel the streamlined minimalism of Scandinavian design as well as the best of what the ’70s had to offer.
“I love the seventies, but I think it’s important that it’s only used as a point of inspiration in design and not imitated,” says Ellison, “I love the materials and shapes in ’70s design when they’re updated in a contemporary way.”
With a focus on the latter, the prominent motif found within the series is a material that has been heavily on the rise: rattan.
We’ve seen it in the form of headboards, vintage accent pieces, and various other decorative elements, but Ellison brings a fresh perspective to the material and how it’s used. In lieu of the traditional woven approach, the modern revamp is incorporated by way of a rattan inlay with metallic details.
Ellison attributes iconic Milanese designer Gabriella Crespi as her source of inspiration for the collection. “ I love the way she mixed materials in a maximalist fashion such as rattan and brass,” she notes. “The brass elevates the rattan to a whole new level when combined with it. I didn’t want the collection to be classed as bohemian in any way.” The brass detailing allowed her to achieve exactly that.
Ahead, we uncover five modern, statement-worthy rattan products that emulate her unique style to inspire you to try it at home.
The matching side table and coffee table each bear a similar composition of a streamlined rattan inlay and sleek brass detailing along the foot of the pieces. A statement in their own right, it’s the intricacies of the design, coupled with its understated finish, that contribute to its unique allure.
Ivo Tall Black Chest, CB2, $899
If this dramatic use of rattan doesn’t inspire you to reconsider the material, we don’t know what will. The addition of the brass pulls bring on a lustrous detail, which further elevates the sleek simplicity of the dresser.
Sense 3-Seater Sofa, Foersom & Hiort-Lorenzen, $4,985
A loose interpretation of the trend promises a streamlined revamp of this living room staple with a sculptural element otherwise difficult to come by. Opt for the white-on-white colorway for a Scandi-chic effect.
Reed Between the Cube Bin, Crate and Kids Exclusive, $25.97
A cool chromatic finish instantly transforms the retro material into an accent-worthy vessel that can go beyond its functional purpose.
Hobi Crescent Rattan Desk, CB2, $849
White oak and a rattan inlay provide this home office staple with an untraditional element that challenges the ordinary. Black metal accents elevate the materials used within, resulting in a contemporary upgrade that can play to a wide variety of decorative aesthetics.