Do finishing touches ever truly get finished? Buildings take on a life of their own and sometimes the plan for a particular corner doesn’t feel quite right once everything else is in place. It might be as simple as an earmarked piece of furniture that ‘chooses’ a home in a different spot or a wall colour that works on paper but isn’t quite right in practice. We’ve had a few of those moments along the way so don’t mind admitting that we’ve taken our time over the finishing touches to the lobby and in particular that lovely expanse of wall behind the seating area. Fair to say there were LOTS of conversations! But we finally made a decision last autumn and although it absolutely felt like the right one it was still a scary moment when the crew from Ferreira de Sá finally turned up to hang it in place!
You have probably heard of Ferreira de Sá. One of the biggest, oldest and best known makers of hand-made rugs in Europe, this Portuguese and family owned company has a reputation that is second to none. We were already familiar with them at Lumi because they created the centre-piece of our rooms – those gorgeous bespoke wall tapestries – as well as the geometric rug that features in each living room.
Our Creative Director Sam Lawrie (and founder of Foster and Bloom – link below) visited their factory in the North of Portugal to choose the colours and fine tune the final design. The brief was to focus on those beautiful hero colours (and the light!) for which Lisbon is well known – the shades of sky blue, rosy pink and warm ochre. They work so well at Lumi because they add a wonderful depth and texture that really brings the space to life – the perfect finishing touch, if you like.
The new design for the lobby had a similar brief. We wanted to draw inspiration from the local area, not just to reflect the traditional Lisbon colours but to explore the patterns that are unique to our neighbourhood – those winding alleyways and cobbled streets of Bairro Alto. This inspiration quickly led to the realisation that this piece would work best as an ensemble; a series of wall hangings that would work together to make a whole.
We couldn’t be happier with the final outcome. In fact we love everything about it; the design, the beautiful colour palette and the powerful way in which it occupies the space. This is their spot, their home, and we simply couldn’t imagine anything else in their stead now!
Let us know what you think…
All ‘factory’ photos (on site at Ferreira de Sá) by Foster and Bloom