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Publication Date : 19-04-2012
Five years ago, interior designer Pavares Leabchantra and market watcher observed how Thais were turning towards vintage-style furniture for their homes. With the real stuff in short supply, he and his wife Sasina, decided to meet the demand by producing French vintage-style furniture to order under the Portobello label.
They launched their first collection at the Bangkok International Gift and Houseware Fairs, impressing dealers from Taiwan and New Zealand. They then expanded their customer target group to local shoppers.
Using imported solid woods such as oak and ash from China, New Zealand and Australia, the designs have a modern-vintage style that suits just about any home. Fabrics for the covers vary but are always good quality and come in a variety of colours ranging from blue, red, purple, yellow and green as well as more basic grey, black and white.
"All our furniture is handmade and created according to custom order. We use solid wood for durability," Sasina says. "We also produce kid's furniture for Mother Goods brand and some of our collections are on sale at Crystal Design Centre and Central World too."
Last year, they teamed up with designer friends to expand their product line to include vintage-style decor items for home and garden under the brand name Desire. In August, they renovated two old houses and turned them into a showroom and cafe, so customers can now enjoy home-made pastries and coffee while looking around.
"Desire offers a selection of decor items for home and garden including angel-like sculptures, lamps, vases and wooden fireplaces. We also have some antiques from flea markets in United Kingdom on offer," Sasina adds.
The furniture includes attractive French-style commode chests painted with Union Jack and flower motifs, dressing tables, bookshelves, stools, beds, daybeds, sofas, cabinets, rocking chairs, chandeliers, lamps and cupid sculptures.
Portobello is situated at 40 Soi Sukonthasawad 11 off Soi Lat Phrao 71 in Bangkok. Visit Portobello.igetweb.com.