As usual with the internet cloud, everyone seems to be a bit right. If you're 26 years old and make $38,000 a year with an eye for design. you're not going to by a $4,000 Eames chair for your studio apartment. And though there's a small pack of lower income design die-hards out there who know how to buy/construct/modify vintage/used to be creative in spite of their income, most don't have the time or sensibility required. So they go to CB2 or West Elm or (gasp) Ikea and buy something slightly more interesting than they'd find at JC Penny that fits their budget and design jones. And when/if life brings those same people to a financial place where they can indulge their passion for historic design/design integrity and lifetime quality pieces, they go to DWR or similar and by a $13,598 Artichoke lamp. There is room and need for both. And, I think, more to the point, there is need and room for both authentic pieces and cheap reproductions. However, I think DWR did itself, its customers and designers a disservice by getting in to the (not so) cheap reproduction business. When you go to Ikea you know what you are getting. But DWR trying to pass off its own knock-offs as lifetime pieces with design integrity worth paying thousands of dollars for was dishonest and degraded the design community. The Fast Company DWR story had it right in the beginning. DWR is way too expensive for the average design-oriented person. But before DWR, the concepts and history of design were largely hidden deep in the interior design/trade show world. DWR has done a great job bringing the history and concept of great furniture design (if not the actual furniture) to the masses. And for that they should be applauded. I hope they get back on track and regain their integrity. I think DWR should stick to selling lifetime quality, classic but pricey pieces to the few that can afford them and continue to provide an easy design tutorial/forum for the rest of us.
The Rise and Fall of Design Within Reach Fast Company | Apartment Therapy Los Angeles
|1/30/10 9:06 AM|