By Katy B. Olson
As Consort prepares to open its doors in New York for the first time, co-founders Brandon Quattrone and Mat Sanders sat down with EAL to discuss their Big Apple roots and how the capital of design continues to influence both their aesthetic and their business model. Taking over an 1830s Tribeca townhouse at 155 Duane Street, which clocks in at 1,200 square feet, the design team will be paying special attention to the small spaces for which New York is known. The interior design shop and office opens on December 5.
Consort will be appealing to the trade as well. “As a home lifestyle brand, it is important for us to be both a solid resource for the design trade while still appealing to tasteful consumers who may come in off the street,” says Sanders.
The New York location will have a similar aesthetic to Consort’s Los Angeles outpost, featuring the work of artists including Bari Ziperstein, Virginia Sin and Morgan Peck. The space will be outfitted with an edited lineup of both new and vintage pieces, across price points, and will serve as home to the team’s custom furniture. Quattrone and Sanders chat with EAL about the new space, and new direction:
How did you decide to move the showroom to New York? Did you have a large existing base here?
We have been thinking about opening in New York since the day we opened L.A. Having both gotten our start in New York, we knew it would be the next stop in Consort’s journey in building the brand. We do have a large base of clients and friends in the city. We’ve just had a few projects shot for publication, and we have more finishing up next year.
Do you have your eye on any other locations for future expansion?
We do! Consort will continue to grow, and we are evaluating the location for the third opening in 2017. Also expect an overhaul of our e-comm and content platforms as we amp up our online presence and think big in tech.
What are the key differences between your West Coast and East Coast locations? How do you adapt for NYC’s smaller living spaces?
Consort will be inhabiting the ground floor and basement level of a historic townhouse in Tribeca. The 1830s building features original brick walls and archways, which will provide the home for Consort’s shop and design offices. Like L.A., visitors shopping the store will see the creativity at work as our New York design team will be visible on the lower level. The old-world feel of the building will bring an inherent New York vibe, and the condensed footprint will mean smaller-scale furniture and inventive floor plans for small-space dwellers. We’re excited to be returning to small-space living, because challenge always brings out the most creative ideas.
You both got your start here in New York. How has the city played a role in your aesthetic? Your business decisions?
The city played a big part in those formative years of our design careers, and New York continues to influence our style and brand. Although our boutique shop feels very L.A., we always bring a sophistication to a playfully designed space. It’s all about the mix—we love a West Coast vibe with an East Coast throwback.
How will custom furniture play a role in the NYC business?
As we continue to refine our custom line, we’re using New York as a testing ground for brand-new furniture designs in our signature style.
How will you split your time between locations?
We love being hands on, and for the store opening, we will be there for several weeks to get the shop up and running. Our home base will continue to be in L.A., but I foresee us being back in New York quite frequently, especially in the first year.
What trade-only resources will be available?
Our custom furniture program is our favorite part of what we do. In addition to the collection of Consort label products, our talented team and resources enable us to create anything to meet a designer’s needs. Keep us in mind for custom work at competitive prices!