As I mention in my August edit letter (look out for our annual Products issue next week), I recently returned from a trip with Interiors from Spain to visit the showrooms and factories of a few of the Spanish manufacturing companies. There, I (along with a group of designers) got an intimate, behind-the-scenes look at how their products—furniture, lighting, stone—were made, and the hours and attention to detail that went into handcrafting these beautiful pieces. It was an eye-opening experience, and one that made me (and the entire group for that matter) truly appreciate the products that make hospitality spaces truly special.
I asked a few of the designers to weigh in on their experience. Below are their comments, and photos (both theirs and mine) that capture the various visits throughout the week-long journey through Madrid, Barcelona, and Valencia.
“Aside from the wonderful opportunities we were given to experience Spanish cuisine and culture, my favorite part of the trip was connecting with these companies and seeing the manufacturing process. It was exciting to see how many of the furniture and lighting pieces we saw are made by hand. A lot of these companies are still family owned and run and still employ artisans to build their beautiful products. I was also shocked in a lot of instances by how few employees there were in some of the factories we visited. With our busy hours, too often we only get to check out new products via a computer screen or catalogue, but to get to not only see and feel a piece, but also witness all the time and labor that goes in to making it was extremely worthwhile.” —Kevin Tyjer, Project Designer, Wilson Associates
“Every visit had a highlight for me. It was great to see all the vendors—I loved CasaDésus’ design and haven’t seen their level of quality in a long time. Flawless. I think Faro is a great source for budget lighting, and most importantly, their flexibility. Expormim, Punt, Capdell, and Giandia Blasco’s furniture was also beautifully made and gorgeous.” —Danielle Fox, Principal Designer, Rodrigo Vargas Design