We’re tired of fast. Fast food, fast fashion, fast furniture. On wistful days we hanker after a more peaceful time, when craftsmanship, attention to detail and quality were more important than volume and delivery time. Which is why House and Leisure is thrilled to announce that De Padova, one of Italy’s premier lifestyle brands, is now available in South Africa. Julia Day of Generation has partnered with De Padova to bring the brand to South Africa, and will be displaying and selling the furniture from her gorgeous new store in Hyde Park Corner. We caught up with De Padova Export Manager Mattia Crippa and Julia Day to discuss the legacy behind this powerful brand. De Padova is such an iconic name in Italy, what is the story behind the brand? De Padova is a family business, which was started in 1956 by Maddalena Corti De Padova. From as early as 1958 Maddalena was meeting with iconic architects and designers Charles Eames, George Nelson and Alexander Girard to produce their furniture in Italy. Since then, the company has prided itself in working with established and emerging designers to create the iconic De Padova Collection. What is unique about the De Padova Collection? De Padova was the first brand to create a ‘lifestyle’ rather than a line of furniture. We don’t have a ‘chair of the year’ or a ‘table of the season’. All our pieces are timeless, and we constantly add to the collection. We are still producing the first pieces from 1956 and we are constantly adding to our collection. Our strong values ensure that our pieces are sophisticated and that they will last forever. You could never look at one De Padova piece and say which era it is from. These are not fashion items – we produce beauty, and beauty is timeless. What are the De Padova values? We focus on quality and strong design principles above all else. We work with a select group of first-class designers from around the world, yet every De Padova piece is manufactured in Italy. We invest in new designers as well as collaborate with established designers. At the moment we are pushing to use more foreign architects, and younger architects, as we believe in the new generation. And your design principles? Less is more. We strive for purity and clarity in our pieces. Because our aesthetic and values are so strong, there is a strong connection between all our pieces, making them instantly identifiable as the De Padova Collection. What is the most iconic De Padova piece? It would be very difficult to choose just one piece. Perhaps it would make more sense to choose one designer. That would have to be Vico Magistretti, with whom the company started a collaboration in the 1970s. How do you see the brand incorporating into the South African market? As with all good design, De Padova is very versatile. It is not specific to a particular time, space or place. It is a collection that you can add to any vernacular, and its newness to the local market and its edge will blend seamlessly with the traditions of South African design. De Padova is available in South Africa through Generation. For more information call 011-325-6302 or visit the Generation store at Shop 14, Middle Mall, Hyde Park Corner, Cnr William Nicol Drive and 6th Road, Hyde Park.