BEEK EN DONK - Just back in the Netherlands, the ILFARI-team is still thrilled. The international lighting company presented itself as one of 15 Dutch participants at Milan Design Week.
That matters for the two decades young, Beek en Donk (NL) - based company that specialises in designer lighting fixtures: from imposing brass chandeliers to imposing compositions of glass for the high-end interior business. Worldwide. Months of preparations preceded and now they look back on the Salone del Mobile with great pleasure.
''That you get to stand among all those thousands of other exhibitors is obviously very special,'' says Renée Ploegmakers, Creative Director at ILFARI, which is owned by Frank Hendriks. ,,The positive reactions we have received pleases us. On top of this, we were also allowed to meet the Dutch Queen Máxima with a small group to talk about sustainability and Dutch design. That was one of the highlights of last week for us.''
(Renée Ploegmakers, Creative director ILFARI)
It is not the first Salone they exhibited but being allowed to stand among the bigger names in the industry is new. Renée thinks this is due to the new path the company took in 2019. ,,Four years ago, we turned to more modern decorative lighting. More important, we started working more intensively with interior design professionals to provide custom-made lighting." Hard work and sticking to the vision did the rest, she says.
One of the distinguishing features is that ILFARI makes the luminaires piece by piece and by hand. Ploegmakers: ,,Of course we also have a standard collection, but interior designers can also put their own spin on it. Moreover, Frank and I have a background in a different industry. As a result, we dare to think and act differently."
Ploegmakers does notice that the need for unique designs is growing by the day. ,, Especially during the corona pandemic, this has moved at a fast pace." Being at home a lot made people realise the added value of 'investing in your interior'. ,,Also in your lighting in terms of a light plan or designer item. People are saving up more often for a special lighting object rather than the same piece as the neighbours. Trend-sensitive items are also becoming less and less popular as a result."
With more than 20 'brand ambassadors' worldwide, ILFARI is working hard making its presence in the interior design world. They are on their way to even greater prominence. ,,We want not only interior professionals, but also the final customer recognises us. If someone adores our work, then our goal has been achieved."