We asked experts in the furniture industry for tips on how to invest in quality pieces that will last you a lifetime


Liani Douglas of Douglas & Company believes the quality of manufacturing is a key aspect when investing in special furniture pieces. “Mass-produced items often lack the craftsmanship and attention to detail that pieces created in limited quantities exhibit,” she says, “The choice of materials plays a vital role, where ‘honest’ materials such as solid timber and natural stone are more enduring than cheaper imitations.” Douglas & Company’s DOCO LUXE range includes the Herr Euler
table, McSorley’s Wonderful Saloon drinks trolley and E.1027 credenza in a new sophisticated monochromatic palette. The range uses materials with unusual finishes to enhance their tactile quality. Natural materials, including stone and ebonised oak, underwent abrasive surface treatments to accentuate the grain and texture. douglasandco.co.za



When deciding whether to invest in a piece of furniture, ask yourself if you have an emotional connection to it. Katy Taplin of Dokter and Misses says you should only buy what you love, even if it
means spending a little more: “Avoid being seduced by a good deal; first consider whether you’d want to have this piece in your life forever.” This quirky collection by Dokter and Misses includes the Darado stool in a variety of sizes and colours, the Barracuda chair, the Cactus coat stand, the Tri mirror and the Foreva Smile rug. Liani Douglas of Douglas & Company agrees: “Choose pieces that speak to your heart and excite you, as furniture is not only functional but also occupies the spaces we work and live in, and should therefore create excitement and spark joy.” dokterandmisses.com



The best and most beautiful furniture pieces are those that are both aesthetically pleasing and seamlessly functional. Consider the Jane table from Roche Bobois, a designer item that does not compromise on function. roche-bobois.com



If money is no object, consider investing in a piece of furniture so special that it could be considered art, a limited-edition item that is likely to appreciate over time. The Guild Group is well known for connecting South African designers with the international design community, representing our country’s talent abroad. Pictured here is the GUILD concept shop in Cape Town, which presents an intriguing collection of artisanal products from the most interesting crafters in Africa, navigating that thin line between art and design. This is a good place to start when shopping for investment pieces.



It’s worth investing a bit of extra money in a piece of furniture you’re likely to use every day. A dining room table, for example, is often placed at the centre of the home and used for everything from the kids doing their homework to family meals and lavish dinners. Choose something beautiful and timeless that will last not only physically but also aesthetically. James Mudge’s Y dining table is a simple piece that will work with any decor scheme. Made of solid oak (or the wood of your choice), it is strong as well as striking. jamesmudge.co.za



For Laurence Brick, MD of Platform Creative Agency, it is important to buy pieces that have longevity, that are well designed, with good proportions, and that have an aesthetic that really appeals to you as opposed to being trend-driven. He describes Xandre Kriel’s Vos Altar as “a sculptural piece that has a stealth-like quality”.



Pieces that are custom-made to fit specific areas of your home might warrant less of an investment,
but it’s always better to buy fewer, more versatile furniture of a higher quality so it can move with you wherever you go. A good place to start is to ask yourself, “Is this a timeless piece and could I live
with it forever?” The Ellica bed from Roche Bobois, designed by Philippe Bouix, has straight lines and a solid fir wood structure, and can be custom-made in the fabric of your choice. roche-bobois.com



The Bofred showroom is a great example of a carefully curated space, mixing furniture, soft furnishings and art from different eras for a rich and layered result. Carla Erasmus of Bofred suggests
you shouldn’t have one specific theme throughout your home. “Use different styles, and mix and match them to create a uniqueaesthetic rather than strictly following the latest trend. Juxtaposing antique with modern creates layers and depth in a home.” Visit this studio space at 2 Windburg Avenue, Vredehoek, Cape Town. bofred.co.za

TEXT Kelly Adami PHOTOGRAPHS Supplied