(Original Image via)
Karl Springer was one of the greatest furniture designers of the 20th century. He always found a way to perfectly blend elegance and quirk - never safe, always interesting. So of course his pieces often become a centerpiece in my own designs. Most known for his use of exotic materials - shagreen, goatskin, lacquer - his work pops, both in terms of color and shape in almost any room.
Originally born in Berlin, Springer came to New York to pursue his passion of becoming a bookbinder in 1957. His first job in the city was working at Lord & Taylor, and he began to use his bookbinding skills to create objects made out of leathers and skins. After years of practice and several jobs at high-end retailers, he became more experienced and branched off to create his own line of furniture pieces, light fixtures and Venetian-glass objects. Eventually, his work spanned the globe, and he had active showrooms in New York, Los Angeles, Tokyo, Munich and even Chicago. His attention to detail and unparalled craftsmanship made him well respected in the design community, and his work has always been coveted by designers and collectors.
As a lover of all things 70's chic, I adore how Springer's designs use a few of my favorite textures and materials: lucite, metals, goatskin parchment and gorgeous wood veneers. I've snagged a few gorgeous Springer pieces that made the perfect accent for my clients. You can't help but be drawn to his pieces the moment you enter a room - they're always eye-catching.
Top image: 24k gold leaf Onassis chairs // 1. Plum goatskin and steel rotating side table // 2. Emerald green goatskin table // 3. Pouf ottoman // 4. Gueridon table // 5. Faux tortoise mirror // 6. Goat skin Onassis chair
I've used Karl Springer's inspiring pieces in the past, including this gorgeous goatskin coffee table for the Palmolive building interior design project. It helped take the design and give it a bit more edge since the architecture and many other pieces were more traditional.
If you happen to snag a piece of Springer's work, it's sure to become one of your favorites. Which classic Springer piece would you love to add to your home?