B&B Italia: 10 Defining Designs

To be avant-garde is to trade the security of what is known for the thrill of the unexpected. B&B Italia is one such story. From 50 ft sculptures to Warhol muses, they’ve broken down boundaries and imbued the once conservative Made in Italy movement with audacity and flair.

 

Sustaining such a legacy over the course of 50 years, is no mean feat. And yet, with a little help from the likes of Zaha Hadid, Patricia Urquiola and Antonio Citterio, they’ve established a culture of innovation that shows no sign of slowing. Today’s blog looks at the designs that made it happen, each a cultural landmark in their own right…

La Bambole ’07 Sofa

In 1972, B&B Italia shocked the world with topless portraits of Donna Jordan draped across the Le Bambole Sofa. It sought to showcase an edgy approach to softness while shattering the prim opinions of womanhood in Italian society. Though the advert was immediately censored, Le Bambole became an instant success, soon to be found in fashionable homes the world over. In 2007, B&B Italia reintroduced Le Bambole ’07, allowing a new generation to fall in love all over again.

Alanda ’18 Coffee Table

Alanda is a collection from the esteemed Italian architect, Paolo Piva. When it first launched in the early 80s, the range included a sofa and a bed, yet it was the coffee table that would really capture the public imagination. While the Memphis group were busy experimenting with colour and print, Piva found beauty in essential lines and geodetic forms, creating the pyramid inspired base we know and love today.

Series Up Lounge Chair

It’s often said that art is for oneself, design is for others. Combine the two and you have a potent form of expression capable of changing the way we live and relate. The raucous arrival of the Series UP Lounge Chair in 1969 was one such moment. Designed by Gaetano Pesce, it shook up the static concept of the armchair, imbuing it with life and a deeper political meaning. The buxom female chair with the ball-n-chain ottoman put Pesce on the map, while cementing B&B Italia’s reputation as an avant-garde design house.

Seven Dining Table

Fast-forward a couple of years and we arrive at a Jean-Marie Maussaud‘s stylish Seven Dining Table. Featuring a distinctive base and top, it represented an attempt to escape from typical table typologies. The result was a space-saving modern dining table capable of seating up to 7 people with ease. It has a soft, biomorphic feel, in part because of the precious woods but also thanks to its leaf-like silhouette.

Metropolitan Lounge Chair

All clean lines and chrome, the Metropolitan Collection captured the spirit of the new Millenium, bringing forth a selection of cosmopolitan styles. From shapely wingbacks through to small armchairs, it brought comfort and class to contemporary homes.

Tufty-Time ’15 Sofa

In Tufty, Patricia Urquiola created a sofa that could evolve and grow as you do. It’s uniquely modular structure transformed the act of finding the right fit into a glamorous game of Tetris, opening up new ways for families to connect. In collaboration with B&B Italia’s R&D Department, the initial reference point, the Capitonne Chesterfields of the 1970s, are reimagined as 360° islands, ideal for lounging and living.

Charles Outdoor Sofa

Following the success of their indoor collection, B&B Italia began to examine how they could translate some of the icons for outdoor use. After years of research and planning, a weather-hardy version of the Charles Sofa was revealed, allowing for continuity throughout the residential panorama.

Husk Bed

Statement yet soft, the Husk collection was designed in response to the burgeoning desire for all things Hygge. While the collection includes a wide range of chairs and sofas, it’s the Bed edition we find most inviting. The oversized headboard serves up cosy quilting while acting as an accommodation for the box springs.

Atoll Sofa

Atoll is one of B&B Italia’s most recent launches, a formal living room sofa that seeks to revive the traditional Bolster cushion. Quirky yet elegant, it epitomises Citterio as a designer — all powerful lines and nostalgic references.

 

Pab Wall System

Pab was the result of a very simple idea: a sheet folded in half and restrained by light ties, designed to be used as a bookshelf and top. From there a modular system was born, capable of adapting to any size or space. The use of mixed materials ensures textural appeal while offering a practical alternative to wall art.

With B&B Italia factory prices due to increase from the 31st January, there’s never been a better time to invest a classic. Plus with the Chaplins Winter Promotion now on, you can save an extra 15% across all ranges. Shop online or pay us a visit to our Hatch End showroom, where we have a dedicated B&B Italia studio on display.  

SHOP B&B ITALIA ONLINE OR IN-STORE IN THE CHAPLINS WINTER PROMOTION

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