Saturday, August 29, 2009

Restoration Reinvention

I received my new Restoration Hardware catalog yesterday.  Being a fan of Belgian and European inspired designs I love the way they are trying to differentiate their brand from Pottery Barn, Williams Sonoma Home and Crate and Barrel.  

However, I have a couple questions about their new positioning.    Is the mass American public going to understand this look?  Restoration can't survive on just attracting interior designers or ex-pats.     My biggest question is who are they targeting with the scale of these pieces?  

Yes, there are still some items that will work in a regular house.  But, there are a lot of pieces that are so jumbo sized it's crazy.  I can't imagine that the original pieces these were based on were this large as most European spaces aren't as large as ours.  Did they base these designs off pieces that were in public spaces like hotels, restaurants or buildings and not re-scale them for the average house? 
Do they understand the size of a room you need for a 118" sofa not to mention the door you need to get it into your house.  It's hard enough trying to get an 88" x 42" deep sofa through most doors.  

Here are a couple of my favorite "bubba" or "gigantic american" sized pieces.  I thought American's we were trying to simplify our lives and downsize?  I guess not.  

This sofa is 118" inches long and 44" deep.  That's one long sofa.  
This sofa is so huge it's crazy.  It's 136" long by 109" inches deep.  Really - is this a bed and not a sofa?  109" inches!!!  Most sofas are 40-44" inches deep.  I want to see the room that this sofa fits in! 

This table is 108" inches long without it being expanded.  Expanded it goes to 144" inches. Again, you need a mega dining room for this piece.

This lamp is 63" in diameter.  That's twice the size of most people's upholstered chairs.  Really.  The look is great, but who has the space?

This would be great in a vaulted entry due to it's size (48" high) but it's too large for anywhere else.  Again, taller than most large wing chairs.  That's one big chandelier. 

Restoration:  I want to see you succeed.  We need more home retailers.  I want people to actually purchase these items and not just think they are pretty in the catalog.   
Please keep the average American house in mind when you are developing new pieces.

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