Though the people around us are ordinary, they’re also extraordinary—they all have a unique story. These stories are the inspiration for Design by Leftovers, a Swedish furniture line that meticulously sources antique pieces from private estates in Italy and elsewhere in Europe and gives them a luxuriously fresh spin. We love this patchwork Charlotte sofa and matching armchair, which are made of mahogany and upholstered with handpicked vintage clothing.
“We believe pre-loved can be re-loved,” explain designer duo and partners Linda and Jona Netsman. “The old, discarded or forgotten can be reborn.”
It’s a conviction that’s beautifully proven in these one-of-a-kind pieces. After sourcing the antiques, Design by Leftovers pairs each piece with patchwork they assemble from a treasure trove of vintage clothing. Each series is inspired by a particular personality. The green-and-blue Charlotte chair and sofa, for example, are named for a woman who was timid as a child but grew up to become a daring equestrienne.
The Netmans choose only high-end furniture that’s in tip-top shape. They then take the wood, usually mahogany, to be restored by a professional who specializes in varnishing and treating the material to ensure lasting quality. The designers also rebuild the interior springs and upholstery by hand, before covering each piece in a unique quilt of reclaimed fabrics. The grommets are made of iron with copper and brass and the wood is polished to an immaculate shine.
It’s good as new, only much, much better—solid, full of personality, and completely unique. In fact, what we love about these pieces is they have the look and quality of something from a Victorian parlor—if that parlor had time-traveled to 1960s San Francisco that is.