Lebanese designer Nada Debs has merged her showroom in Beirut with her studio space in a effort to join all operations of her brand operations under one roof to allow visitors to better experience both her designs and working environment.
Debs’ well-known Saifi showroom has now become part of her studio in the Saad Building in Gemmayzeh, together forming the Nada Debs Boutique – a small, street-level retail and exhibition space.
“I have always been inspired by finding a balance in opposing differences: tradition and modernity, natural and man-made, the hand and machine. I am intrigued by the tension that lies in exploring these contrasts. In today’s world, we are all navigating a path between the digital and the human experience. As we drift closer towards a future that relies so heavily on technology and virtual resources, how do we strike a balance and maintain a strong sense of self that is personal and human?” said Debs.
“My response to this unfolding chapter is to open up my own studio and invite people to see, touch, talk, share and experience our world. We want to celebrate the different ways in which we think, work and live together as part of a multi-disciplinary creative studio today. It is a sensory and social experience and we want to share it with others,” she added.
The brand’s shift from a commercial retail approach to a more “socially responsive studio” informed Debs’ decision to merge both areas of the discipline into a single venture.
“Like so many in the world of design, our development over the last decade has seen us transition from a commercial brand engaged in production and retail to a more socially responsive studio, exploring different ways in which we can bring our values to life through interiors, commissions and collaborations,” Debs explained.
“As a result, we are moving our Saifi showroom into our Gemmayze studio space to bring people into the heart of our process. Today our focus is on using our experience to raise awareness of what design can do and how it can effect positive change.”
She continued: “For us, that starts at home. Walking into the heart of old Beirut, up the winding staircase of our historic mansion block and into our studio, you enter our world. It is a warm, inviting environment where craft, design, creativity and technology come together under one roof and come to life.
“It is a working environment, a creative environment and a social environment too; it is a place where ideas are shared and possibilities are explored. It is our way of life and we look forward to welcoming you
The existing studio, where Debs creates her pieces, has also been re-designed to take into account the centralisation of the brand’s business operations.
The 320m2 studio now consists of a series of spaces to allow for a variety of functions, including an office, showroom, meeting spots, and a workshop.
The main space within the Nada Debs Boutique is the Salon that showcases the designer’s furniture, art, and objects – with older pieces showcased amidst new designs and prototypes.
The space also includes a Curatorial room, which highlights specific collections and/or room settings; a long gallery space that is both a work and exhibition area; a sample room, workshop, and studio; as well as an area that showcases her personal collection of pieces from her various travels.
The new Nada Debs Boutique is being inaugurated with the launch of the ‘Up, Close, & Personal’ event that allows visitors to explore the new space and also witness the designer’s mew collections and recent collaborations. The event runs until 31 March.
Some of these include a new furniture collection, Funquetry, a contemporary play on traditional marquetry techniques, a new mirror collection called Refraction, as well as the YOU & I collection of carpets, created in collaboration with FBMI.