Iman Deco [Africa Inspired]
[Image credit: Iman Deco Hoop Chair via MeubleSoLoft]
I recently received a request asking for help with finding African or African inspired furniture and interior accessories, in particular, patio furniture and during my research came across the designs of French-based company Iman Deco, whose colourful and skillfully woven product ranges include casual tables, chairs, benches, runners, trays, and handbags. Handcrafted in Togo in partnership with local artisans, Iman Deco was launched in 2000 by Parisian designer Michèle Nexer, who sought to combine contemporary and retro style inspiration with traditional West African weaving techniques. The result was a lightweight range of products for indoor and outdoor use; as seen with the 1950’s inspired Hoop Chair.
The designs and materials used are robust, designed and chosen to withstand a variety of weather conditions; the framework is made from thin steel rods, whilst tightly woven polypropylene panels providing the required seating and surface covering, feature dashes, squares and zig-zag patterns in a multitude of contemporary colour palettes ranging from acid brights to subtle earthy tones.
The woven designs are inspired by the West African weaving traditions such as Kente that Michèle came across during many trips to Africa. Immersing herself in the diverse cultures and the local art on offer, Michèle began to to imagine a line of bags, accessories and furniture featuring the patterns, and making use of materials such as recycled fishing and telephone wire, dyed to suit the colour schemes. Iman Deco furniture also comes in a ‘mini-me’ size for use in children’s bedrooms, playrooms, at mealtimes and of course perfect for those oh-so-important tea parties!