DUBAI: Nayef Francis is an interior architect who established his own design house focusing on furniture and solution-driven household items, all handmade at his atelier in Lebanon.
He told Arab News that the design house was rooted in the concept of simplicity, nostalgia, and comfort.
“We incorporate the idea of the memories we collect from our childhood. So, many products are based on these happy moments and on nostalgia definitely,” he said.
As an example, the architect noted that he had drawn inspiration from a spinning top toy he played with as a child to design a cylindric, stainless steel table.
“This is a childhood memory that we carried through the years and the design was inspired purely from it,” he added.
Francis pointed out that comfort was a key factor in creating his products, and said his pieces needed to be aesthetically pleasing and cozy for them to be successful.
“Any piece, especially seating, we focus a lot on comfort. So, we mix design and comfort simultaneously and we don’t (create) purely for just design or beauty.”
Largely inspired by nature and his surroundings, Francis usually gravitates toward using materials such as stainless steel, leather, and wood.
“I like using raw materials, and I like preserving wood the way it is. I don’t like painting the wood. I like to expose the roughness of the metal. Anything that can carry the actual identity of the product, I am all for it,” he added.
Much of his work is carried out in close cooperation with Lebanese artisans who help make his creations come to life.
He said: “We like to work closely with the artisans in order to gain experience and information. It’s about sharing. So, basically what we provide is a design aesthetic and what they provide is the know-how and the techniques to produce something that is quite interesting.”
Francis gained a degree in interior architecture from USEK University, Lebanon in 2001 and established his own eponymous design house eight years later.
His products are available online on Artsy, Galleria Mia, Wescover, and Pamono.