August 14, 2012
By Silvana Longo
I used to avidly watch Jane Lockhart on her design show, Colour Confidential, in awe of her bold colour choices where she magically transformed a room from lifeless to life-affirming. She introduced me to the concept of painting a ceiling a colour other than white, which seemed revolutionary at the time, (thanks Jane!). I always applauded her courage in introducing colour into so many neutral homes, devoid of personality, mine included. Personally, I have always gravitated to colour in my wardrobe, but I had never dared to adopt my love for chroma in my home. It was encouraging to watch Jane hold people’s hands as they conquered their fear of colour in decor and cross that barrier. Now after 20 years in the biz, she has branched out and taken on a new frontier by creating her very own furniture line simply called, Jane by Jane Lockhart.
Let me assure you– there is nothing plain Jane about this Canadian-made, mid-priced furniture line which she designed with “comfort” and “style” in mind. After years of getting custom furniture made for clients through bench builders, she wanted to find a way to speed up the process and offer an affordable price point. So she teamed up with Statum Design Inc, a 35-year furniture manufacturer, located just on the border of 416 and 905, to create quality and locally made pieces. She launched in January this year to retailers and debuted her eight furniture collections to designers at a very civilized breakfast (despite it taking place on a Monday morning) at the warehouse where it all comes to life. We got a taste of her design aesthetic as we sat comfortably in her Jane chairs and couches and sipped coffee and OJ while she spoke about the line and how it all came to fruition. It took about a year from concept to production. She presented the 42 colour palettes to choose from, assuring us that all 240 fabrics she personally selected are all from North American mills. Going local has endless benefits as this green initiative has actualized Jane’s vision to cut waiting times and establish an accessible price point for custom furniture. Instead of the typical eight to 12 weeks, wait time is less than half of that with a mere three to four weeks. Plus there is a comfort in knowing the valued pieces in your home are made here in Canada.
When it comes to upholstery, you won’t find a pure cotton fabric in the mix as Jane points out that it simply doesn’t last. Instead she opted for natural and synthetic fibres for durability and wear. The designs have beautiful high-end details such as tufting, nail heads, French seams and piping. The cushions filling are a combination of down and poly-dacron which ensure comfort and softness in seating. Who knew that the density and compression of foam make all the difference! The technical part of furniture-making is interesting but as decor lovers, I know you want to see the finished product. Here’s a peek at a few of the pieces from Jane’s stunning collection that I have already started envisioning in my next home makeover.
Price points: Sofas: $1,400-$1,800 Chairs: $700 Ottomans: $500-$700
My personal favourite (and where I sat):
A statement piece, the Donna Chair is made for those who love to socialize, with its arm-free design it allows for free, easy movement.