Whiteleaf Business Centre
Buckingham Industrial Park
Buckingham MK18 1TF
United Kingdom
Tel.+44 (0)1296 715228
Northern Office:
Allendale Forge Studios,
Market Square, Allendale
NE47 9BD, United Kingdom

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Verco Office Furniture

VERCO - the designers
Simon Pengelly bursts into Song

A major draw to VERCO Office Furniture's stand at Design Prima in London this year (2008) was an exciting new design called Song.

A compact, medium back tub chair on wire or swivel base frames, it together - with big brother Dance (released this January) - are simple in form yet forge a strong visual statement. Both offer supreme comfort for all users of 'break-out' and visitor areas and provide a touch of luxury and effortless beauty in the office or public environment.

The designs also see the emergence of a promisingly fruitful relationship with one of Britain's finest furniture designers, Simon Pengelly.

Simon Pengelly

An award winning cabinetmaker before even graduating from Kingston University in 1988, Simon worked for both Conran and Habitat before founding Pengelly Design in 1993 and carries out commissions for some of workplace furniture's best known manufacturing brands.

His much-publicised affinity with materials and manufacturing processes - combined with a passionate desire to create, as he puts it, production furniture with 'soul'- has resulted in award-winning designs that marry wonderfully understated design to fiendishly clever engineering, creating results that share timeless appeal and ready user accessibility.

We asked Simon to sum up his first experience working with VERCO…

How did the relationship come about?

"Pretty straight-forwardly. VERCO came to me in 2006 and explained they wanted a seating design for visitor and breakout areas."

His reaction?

"Pleasure. I'm always encouraged when British companies approach us to do contemporary furniture. There aren't that many doing it proactively and they showed every intention of looking holistically at their range and of looking forward and designing a range rather than a couple of pieces.

"Some companies pay lip service to outsourcing design and this manifests itself in the absence of marketing put behind the end product. VERCO gets behind design with quality literature, PR and showcases such as Prima."

What was the brief?

"VERCO wanted to establish a long-term relationship with us and suggested we start with a seating range. They weren't overly prescriptive."

And his solutions?

"The concepts we went through showed us to be on the right track in that we didn't seek to reinvent the wheel but create work that has familiarity, accessibility and instantly understandable to VERCO and its customers. In short, something that fitted well with existing ranges yet reflected progress.

"We did seek to imbue the chairs with a personality which hadn't been done before."

Verco Song furniture


"In the detail. The relationship between the seat and arm for instance, where the former flows up into latter. It's aesthetic and it's functional, allowing us to hide the fixing between the two components and enabling us to attach the base at the same time.
"VERCO also wanted something that was relatively easy to upholster and doing the chair in two upholstered components rather than one went toward resolving this element of the brief."

What kind of design personality do Song and Dance have?

"A bit cheeky - but there's nothing wrong in that. Our work relies generally on combining proportion and comfort intelligently using manufacturing processes to drive the aesthetic."

Do visitor and breakout areas afford designers the opportunity to have a bit of fun?

"Definitely, particularly given how relatively seriously desk-based seating design has to be. Reception and break-out areas are the fastest growing at present in the work environment. They are half way between domestic and workplace-biased; we call them 'soft contract'. You don't want something too quirky but you can design a chair with a domestic overtone or use a base or fabric that makes it more contract-friendly."

What's the most important point you want to get across to new clients?

"The need to get under the skin of the company. We are not here to stamp our signature on our client's ranges. It's all about furthering their signature."

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Issued October 2008 on behalf of VERCO Office Furniture Ltd by

petermuir public relations
Whiteleaf Business Centre, Buckingham Industrial Park, Buckingham MK18 1TF, UK
tel 00 44 (0) 1296 715228 fax 00 44 (0)1296 715486


About Verco

Founded in 1912, VERCO is one Britain's best known and respected office furniture manufacturers. Take this link for the full story …


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