Name to know: Kabinet

We meet the Milanese trio behind the brand who dub their style ‘future nostalgia’

Kabinet design agency

Launched earlier this year, Milanese firm Kabinet is redefining upholstery and collaborating with traditional artisans. We speak to lead designer Daniel Nikolovski, shown above with founder Danu Chirinciuc and curator Janice Li, about the brand and where it plans to go from here.

What is Kabinet’s aim and ethos? Our vision is to bring a youthful interpretation of Italian furniture-making and rare elements into homes, and to breathe new life into the Veneto specialist-craft region.

How would you describe the brand’s style? Future nostalgia. Our pieces have a sense of the past, which we reinterpret with advanced production techniques and current materials. We always look back to find the future.

‘Fossil tables’, from £2,175, with translucent resin tops and spine-like legs
‘Fossil tables’, from £2,175, with translucent resin tops and spine-like legs

Tell us about your new collection ‘Keepsakes’... It’s full of playful forms and colours, with daring combinations, and a forward-facing appreciation of the old and the raw. You can expect to find collectable pieces of premium Italian design and experimental practices.

What inspired the collection? ‘Keepsakes’ is inspired by the idea of an explorer collecting memorabilia from cultures and eras. We married a multitude of influences – from fossil formation (for our ‘Fossil’ tables) and monolithic obelisks (‘Obelisk’ light) to African rituals (‘Voodoo’ light).

     						Brushed-steel ‘Obelisk’
     light, £1,962, which features
     a tortoiseshell acetate block
Brushed-steel ‘Obelisk’ light, £1,962, which features a tortoiseshell acetate block

Does the collection feature any standout components or methods? High-gloss elm burl veneer was often used in Italian art deco designs during the 1930s – our matt coat gives it a more contemporary look. We also use tortoiseshell acetate, usually employed for eyewear, and a translucent resin we developed, which creates a frozen-looking effect. For fabrics, we favour experimental production techniques usually used in fashion.

Kabinet Dino chair
‘Dino’ armchair, £2,483, inspired by designer Dino Gavina’s ‘Simone’ sofa

Where do you see the brand going? We plan to collaborate with more young designers from different disciplines and researchers who can challenge us on creating new products. We also want to establish closer ties with artisans in glassmaking, wood and metalwork and extend our textile portfolio.

What’s next for you? Completing the capsule range. We’ll be designing our first dining table, as well as more collectable accessories.

This article first appeared in September 2019 issue of ELLE Decoration

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