Schumacher’s newly-appointed Creative Director Dara Caponigro sent her creative team “treasure hunting” for a range of antique furniture and accessories to add to the mix of products offered in showrooms—from marble cocktail tables to midcentury Italian lighting to Chinese porcelain.
The endeavor is part of the company’s commitment to helping designers create beautiful, soulful and livable spaces, which they can now do under one roof.
This reporter spoke with Caponigro about her vision for the project and how she plans to expand it.
This is a concept we haven't really seen before. How did you come up with the idea?
The idea comes from a passion for home and for decorating. I’ve had a long career in design journalism (most recently as the EIC of Veranda) but I’ve also had an antiques business and have decorated my own homes as well as the homes of several clients. Bringing antiques in has added to the richness of the Schumacher showroom.
Antique brass and marble coffee table in the Schumacher showroom
What do you hope the antiques will do for the showroom?
At Schumacher, we carry fabrics, wallcoverings and furniture. Introducing antiques to the mix not only adds more character to the showroom—there's nothing like patina to make a space more inviting—but it also provides a service to designers. They can now shop for antiques and accessories at the same time they are sourcing fabrics, wallcoverings and furniture.
How did you source and select the antiques?
Style is the determining factor for the items we are bringing in. There is also an authenticity to them but that doesn't mean they are museum pieces. They are all meant to add personality to a room but are also things you want to live with, and they range in price.
Chinese porcelain jars and Jacques Adnet magazine rack
As part of our first introduction, we have a midcentury clean-lined brass coffee table with a statuary marble top and a suede magazine rack by Jacques Adnet. There's a 19th-century primitive Swedish wing chair made entirely out of wood and a theatrical almost life-size pair of cloisonné leopards that would be perfect for an entryway. Most are from Europe with a few American vintage pieces thrown in and all have been vetted by me and the creative services team including Eugenia Soto and Tori Jones.
Will selling antiques be an ongoing initiative?
Having antiques in the showroom is a long-term plan that we hope to launch in our other showrooms across the country down the road.
What else is happening in the showroom?
Expect a renovation of the New York showroom in 2015. We plan to let the light in and create an atmosphere that fosters creativity and really shows off our amazing range of product.