Over the weekend, I went over to Lush Lush at Paya Lebar in Singapore. For my readers who are not based in Singapore, Lush Lush is a heaven for classic designer furnishing Lovers who feel the tight strings of the budget purses. I was checking out the differences in prices of the pieces of furniture that I am planning for my next home against the prices of the originals. Well, as designer clones, they don’t come cheap. Although some of the choice items for me are several times cheaper than their originals, they are more expensive than some original items for other reputable pieces. For example, a replica Maxalto Teti Armchair costs more than an original Vitra Eames Plastic Armchair with Dowel legs when it is on sale at Space Asia Hub. But of course, the material used somewhat justified the costs as the Maxalto Teti Armchair comes in solid wood and real leather upholstery, as compared to the Vitra’s polypropylene plastic Eames Plastic Armchair. This paradox of buying certain replicas vs certain original models makes the choice of furnishing a difficult decision. I was looking at the prices for the sofas which makes more sense, given the solid wooden frame and real leather of the sofas available in Lush Lush. some of the pricing are as good as Ikea sofas upholstered in real leather, but provides that designer look that you may want. Sofas are easily the costliest items in the Living Room, or rather, the costliest single furnishing in the entire house with perhaps, the exception of a good King sized bed. As I was flipping the pages of a catalog that I had requested from the friendly sales person in search for the name of the Flexform Lifewood replica to find out its pricing, I noticed a particular design that was not on their website. This familiar piece was one that my wife used to point out to me that its good-looking. Staring back at me from the catalog is a Maxalto Simpliciter Sofa.
This surprising find brings me to today’s feature, the Maxalto Simpliciter designed by none other than the Anti-Design Maestro, Antonio Citterio in 2003. I took a quick look at its dimensions and checked it against Maxalto’s technical specifications. They are identical in length and depth. But the depth is a concern for me as the Simpliciter is only 90cm deep compared to a 97cm deep B&B Italia Charles Sofa, a 100cm deep Flexform Lifewood and a whooping 122cm deep Flexform Groundpiece which I had enjoyed before in full comfort. I love deep seating which provides great support for the thigh and a 90cm deep seat is a concern for me. Unfortunately, there are no display pieces for me to try the shallow sofa. Thankfully, I managed to try out an identical depth sofa from another contemporary design retailer the following day and concluded that the 90cm depth of the Maxalto Simpliciter is still acceptable for my liking, although a deeper seat is still preferred.
The Maxalto Simpliciter caught my eye for a few simple reasons. This sofa simply have all my preferences in my desire for a sofa. Thin profile Seat cushions – checked. Mild Quilted Seat Cushions – checked. Low back rests – checked. Thin arm rests – checked. Thin profiled legs – checked. The black or bronze finished legs are extruded aluminum, but made them looked like my preferred wooden legs. Well, in this aspect, half checked. All these features looks as if Antonio Citterio had put together a series of his designs all in one which I had taken fancy in. The back rests and thin arm rests are reminiscences of B&B Italia George Sofa. The Mild Quiltied Seat Cushions reminds me of Maxalto Lutetia Sofa. The Legs are a combination of a Maxalto Lutetia and B&B Italia Charles Sofa. The profile of the seat and seat frames looks to inspire the designs of the B&B Italia Ray Sofa.
Although the name Simpliciter in the Simplice Collection makes it sound simple, this sofa looks to be complicated in conception to create a light aesthetic sofa that de-clutters the visuals with good comfort for functionality. Maxalto also offers a slip cover option for the younger and more feminine touch which is not exactly my taste. The Maxalto original has a tubular steel internal frame with Bayfit® (Bayer®) flexible cold shaped polyurethane foam, shaped polyurethane and polyester fibre wadding for its single piece stitched seat cushion. Of course, there is always the option of fabric or leather from Maxalto. I had always liked the leather upholstery for the ease of maintenance, comfort and luxury while the fabric piece offers more contemporary looks.
Available also in the armchair variant, the Maxalto Simpliciter Armchair is perfect as a match for the sofa. But I would prefer to pair it up with a Maxalto Clio upholstered in the same leather as the sofa for that variety and extra flair while maintaining the harmony with the colours.
Thanks to 3D Pictures created by Turbosquid, I am able to get a closer and all round view of the Maxalto Simpliciter to envisage its visual details.
The Maxalto Simpliciter is also the piece of design which both my other half and I fell in love with, but doubt that we will be able to afford the original. Although I had not taken a look at the price of the original Maxalto, I am expecting the Maxalto Simpliciter upholstered in leather to cost well in or even above the region of SGD$30,000 in Singapore based on the price of a B&B Italia Ray Sofa in Koto Grade leather. The replica in the Lush Lush catalog? A cream leather upholstered piece which really tempted my heart.