A Conversation with Women of the Home Design Brand MADE

vor 3 years

“The most ecological object is the one that we do not create. We must therefore add another value: that of emotion.”

We at Fräulein are a big fan of the home goods platform and brand MADE, which features a multitude of designers offering their high quality goods at fair prices. There is a Sustainable section, where you can see exactly from where your goods are sourced and how they were made, as well as a fantastic home inspiration section that we periodically peruse when we need some eye candy and a swift kick to the butt to do a little home renovating on our lazy Sundays. They offer everything from leather sofas to collectible dishes, handwoven throws and velvet duvets and beautiful mirrors we have had bookmarked for months. We had the opportunity to speak with the Design Director Ruth Wassermann, who is in charge of choosing all the wonderful designers you see hosted on the site.We then speak with a new designer being offered on MADE whose style we simply love, Charlotte Juillard , as well as Eugénie Delarivière, who did a re-design workshop with MADE in the French market. We first talk to Ruth about the industry, and Charlotte and Eugénie about where they derive inspiration and their values ​​in working in design. 

When did you know you wanted to work in this industry?

Ruth Wassermann: I knew I wanted to work in design when I was at school, but in fact I am driven by more than just the creativity … I am passionate about the storytelling, about the human element of people’s homes and about people’s connection with brands , as well as how products can connect intimately to their personal values. That interest is something that has evolved through the course of my career. 

Which women designers do you look up to?

RW: I really love the work of Patricia Urquiola and Paola Navone. They both have contemporary style that references tradition in new and exciting ways. There are also loads of new designers emerging now that are making names for themselves independently of big brands, such as Eny-Lee Parker and Elan Byrd in the USA, as well as Egg collective who are all women. I recently had the pleasure to talk to Mary Portas- not a designer, but a creative- who I find an inspirational person. She is currently advocating for more traditionally female qualities in senior leadership, in what she is calling the Kindness Economy.I am also a big fan of Jenna Lyons, who I think is a really inspiring woman.She is effortlessly stylish and I am a big Pinterest stalker of her style, as well as her working approach and her honesty in the press.

Is there a piece of furniture or a collection you are most proud of?

RW: I really love some of the new sofa ranges that we have launched recently … I love the Dion in whitewash boucle. We have some very holistic product stories coming through this spring. Our focus on investment pieces and a new level of soft silhouettes has really resonated well with the current mood. The idea of ​​these designs are well-considered, made in quality materials, and are a considered purchase with longevity. 

Which working collaboration has been the most rewarding for you lately?

RW: We are fortunate to work across a huge number of external designer collaborators, and having the opportunity to work with so many different and talented people is one of the real privileges of this job. However, this year was a challenging time, with the whole team managing remote working. I would say the most rewarding has been the spirit, resilience and continued creativity of the team at MADE. The business does a great job of motivating its staff, and in particular, our internal culture club put fun and interest into employee engagement, which really helped the whole global team through these challenging times.

What is your first memory of design?

Charlotte Juillard: I was not aware of what design was before starting my studies in Applied Arts. There were beautiful objects around me, objects in drawing, but whose design was foreign to me. I am thinking of my grandmother’s villa, which was full of treasures, a bucolic house on the French Riviera, built in the 1960s by a renowned architect from the region, a contemporary of Le Corbusier. This bright environment has undeniably marked me.

Eugénie Delarivière : I think my very first memory of “design” was an exhibition presenting the work of Joe Colombo at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris. I had been fascinated by this universe, the thoughts of complete modular, futuristic, and utopian spaces.


You both have designed many different types of objects. Is there a common thread between them?

Charlotte: I would say that the common thread of my creations is a certain femininity in the design, and the search for a precise and right gesture. Craftsmanship is reinventing itself in this somewhat paradoxical world, where hyperconnection is mixed with a deep need for re-anchoring and the search for values. There is a growing interest in craftsmanship, in the material touch, the appreciation of the “hand” of the makers.

Eugénie: The objects that we were able to design within the Résilientes Studio have nothing in common with these “early design memories” except perhaps the search for a certain utopia in practice.

For Anni Albers, “Being creative is not so much the desire to do something as it is the listening to that of which wants to be done: the dictation of the materials.” What would be your definition of creativity?

Charlotte: Creativity for me is the ability to transcend traditional ways of thinking or acting, and to develop new ideas, methods or objects. Creativity is the seed for new and original things. It goes beyond imagination, because creativity can thrive and develop, expand. When we talk about an idea, that means confronting it with the world to check its relevance, impact, etc. For a process, it’s about testing how it works. If it is an object, it will have to be “created.”

Eugénie: Defining creativity is a difficult thing. I would say that for me, today, creativity is: giving existence. To create something is to convey an idea into the real of what exists. This idea of ​​creativity, as the creation of something that exists, is also one of the levers which, I think, pushes Man to create. It is a way of existing, a way to endure, to leave a legacy.


One of Charlotte Perriand’s definitions of modernity was about “expressing the spirit of your time.” Does this resonate with you and your approach to design?

Charlotte: P erriand did not follow trends, and instead was always one step ahead. She was extremely contemporary for her time. I think that you have to have a great understanding of the period in which you live in order to transcend it and imagine solutions for tomorrow. In a time when we are inundated with objects, it is important to consider new values, other than the ones of pure consumption and use. We surround ourselves with objects, but why? Beyond simple functionality, the designer must now imagine sensitive objects. The most ecological object is the one that we do not create. We must therefore add another value: that of emotion.

Eugénie: Yes, why not? Modernity is a fuzzy and uncertain notion. We often say “it’s modern” without really knowing what that means. Maybe modernity is being both in disruption and in keeping with the times.


For Cini Boeri, “Joy is inherent to the act of designing, to the proposal of the new and to its creation with responsibility and passion.” What are the main values ​​that will always represent you?

Charlotte: This is a profession that requires revealing an important part of oneself through drawing and creating. I wish to remain honest in the way I represent myself and faithful to what I am: outgoing, sensitive, altruistic, and kind. I hope I can translate some of that into the objects that I imagine, with passion and responsibility.

Eugénie: It is difficult to be 100% sure of the values ​​that will still represent me in 10 years time, but the one I am sure about is openness to meeting and exchanging, with always the possibility of actually changing my values, my tastes, and my desires….

You can shop all items on MADE here (you can even check out the designers at MADE singularly here)
And here is that inspiration hub we mentioned, which includes a virtual room designer

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