SA designer Dark Horse partners with @home for a capsule collection

Local furniture design brand Dark Horse can now be found at popular retailer @home, thanks to a joint venture with ClowSA, a design-focused enterprise and business-to-business marketer.

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A capsule collection of five signature designer furniture from Dark Horse is available for sale from @home. This dark horse includes the Savile Chair, which is made from leather cut and glued together on a 31 meter long narrow strip, which is then handcrafted to form the dining chair.

Other pieces in the collection include the Dark Horse 3-seater Boss sofa and Bose armchair, both in leather and steel frames, reflecting the brand’s “bold yet refined” design aesthetic. Osso and Rosso dining chairs made of leather and metal will also be part of the capsule.

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Dark Horse was founded 11 years ago by husband and wife team Jared and Liz Nelson in a small Cape Town apartment. Today, the business has its own warehouse in the city’s Pardon Island industrial district and employs a growing number of people.

“When you buy local produce, there is a downside. The money you spend goes back into the economy in a variety of ways, and everyone who contributes to the production gets the benefit of that spending. Not only are you getting this unique, amazing product, but you’re really stimulating the local economy,” says Jarrard.

Explaining the brand’s design approach, they said, “Our design philosophy is to bring people closer, so in everything we do, we want to use our furniture to build memories and pass those pieces on to the next generation. This is why durable materials can last this generation and the next.

Connecting designers with companies

The Dark Horse project with @home is the latest in a number of collaborations facilitated by ClotSA, which works to connect South African furniture and lighting designers with corporate bodies.

Among Klout’s notable projects are the Nando’s Hot Young Designer Talent Search and the Nando’s Design Program in 2010. Since its official launch in 2018, it has facilitated over R80m of domestic furniture and lighting design sales to the global market.

The collaboration with @home is a very interesting story. We’ve worked with CloutSA before, and their team knew our look and feel and what we were capable of. “They included us in his presentation to @home to say, ‘If you want to go on an environmental design journey, these people need to be part of that conversation,'” Jarrard said.

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