What makes Design Theory unique?

Design Theory is a multi-line rep group that focuses on design-forward ancillary furniture and accessories.  Our clients are looking for high design items for their space by design-focused companies. Christopher and Daniel have an eye for design – for the finer and more unique things.

How does branding intersect with design?

Our clients are mainly driven by architects and design firms, so naturally, they are all about finding design-forward pieces. We help brands bring their visions to fruition. We love bringing them ancillary pieces for their more collaborative spaces like lounge areas or their café. People spend more time in their workplace than they do at home, so why not make it look and feel good.

What is most important to you when you are working with a client?

It’s so important to listen up front, to gain an understanding of what is important to them.  Instead of showing them every brand that I have, I always start with an interview to discuss their needs. Then, we work on conceptual plans. For instance, I will come up with imagery for their work environment based on what they have shared with me, giving them ideas that will spark the conversation.

Also, offering a warranty is essential. All of the brands that I work with provide warranties for at least five, to ten years or more. I see offices furnished with pieces built for the home, not the office. These won’t be able to stand the test of time and are not meant for the wear-and-tear of an office setting.

What trends do you see in workplace design?

Recently, I have seen a huge trend toward live edge. From boardroom tables to wall shelving, these raw and weathered wood accents are here to stay. We can install technology like cameras and microphones into these beautiful pieces of wood, making them not only beautiful but functional. Another trend is blackened steel, solid oak, and leather accents. Instead of the traditional, styles, companies are choosing more interesting, and unique pieces.

What is most important to you when working with a dealer?

Communication is huge. I prefer to pick up the phone instead of relying on email or text. It’s an easy and great way to save time. People are afraid to pick up the phone, and unfortunately, it has become a lost art. 

Why do you love this industry?

Creativity. I see a lot of young talent out there. As a result, I do a lot of customization. People are thinking outside the box so much more often. Also, I love presenting to customers, letting them touch and feel the materials and finishes. That’s what I love every day.

What do you love about working with Contract Furnishings?

Contract Furnishings has an excellent eye for design and for putting together spaces that are creative, beautiful, and on-brand… all while finding the best value for their customers. And, value isn’t always about money; it could be about the warranty or quality. I love working with them because they put in the time and research needed to pull together a beautiful furniture package that is well thought out.