RadioBDC Logo
What You Know | Two Door Cinema Club Listen Live
 
 
< Back to front page Text size +

Are the Red Coats Coming?

October 4, 2013 12:35 PM  

E-mail this article

Invalid E-mail address
Invalid E-mail address

Sending your article

  • E-mail
  • E-mail this article

    Invalid E-mail address
    Invalid E-mail address

    Sending your article

    Your article has been sent.

VICTORIAN CREAM KITCHEN_A4.jpg

Clive Christianís first kitchen, designed in the 1970s, is the Victorian painted in classic cream. Famous for its use of crystal chandeliers and detailed architectural embellishments, it prompted Clive Christian to purchase a factory in the northeast of England where he could make it himself.

Could a Clive Christian showroom be coming to Boston?

The answer is a resounding maybe. The superstar of British brands is placing its proverbial toe in the waters around the Charles hoping that the ripple will reach a proper partner for its line of kitchens, interiors, and furniture. Clive (its website is simply clive.com) does have showrooms and partners on this side of the pond, most notably a corporate-run shop in New York, but no one from headquarters had set foot in Boston in 10 years until last week. Victoria Christian, the eldest daughter of company founder and design clairvoyant Clive Christian, was in town for a meet-and-greet with design industry types at the British Consulate on Beacon Hill.

Victoria and patrick.jpg

Victoria Christian, who represents the company her father founded worldwide, presented the companyís line of kitchens and other architecturally distinctive interiors to guests at the British Consulate. Here she poses with architect Patrick Hickcox of Hickox Williams Architects of Boston.

Despite the recession and slow economic recovery, which, we note, are not unique to Boston, a lot has changed (for the better) in the New England luxury market over the last decade. The time may be ripe for another player targeting super-affluent patrons and Clive Christianís approach, a mix of opulence, craftsmanship, and tradition, could be a tour de force. Kitchens with gold leafing, crystal chandeliers (Clive was the first to set them dangling above the corbel-supported ogee-edged-wood topped island in his debut 1970s kitchen), and statuary in oneís own image are selling worldwide, so why not here?

One reason, an attendee at the consulís party posited, is that we have so many fine designers and workrooms right here in New England. Why import? Because, one could argue, there are those who specifically seek out the brand. (Victoria would not reveal any Clive clients, but we did find a report that Rod Stewart and Celine Dion are fans. Our guess is that the brandís base is more off-the-radar than those Las Vegas headliners, however.) Clive Christian has, after all, been named to the Order of the British Empire for his work in bringing worldwide awareness to luxury UK products. (There was no talk of it between the champagne and the canopies, but Clive Christian also produces what Guinness World Records has deemed the most expensive perfume on the planet.)

ARCH IVORY KITCHEN.jpg

This Architectural Kitchen painted in ivory with black walnut countertops is highlighted with a pair of elaborate chandeliers. Niches with puttis (that can be made in any likeness), and other architectural embellishments can be customized to make this design a bespoke fit for the clientís home.

And while there are Clive Christian showrooms from Singapore to Moscow, everything is bespoke, reminds Victoria. From that first Victorian Kitchen, which prompted Clive to buy a factory where his own craftsmen could create his vision, to baths and closets, to the pared down (for Clive) new Alpha Kitchen line, everything is tailor-made in the companyís workrooms in northeast England to suit each clientís needs, desires, and spaces. Customizing every detail until the fit is perfect is Clive Christianís trademark. The product is classic, dignified, proud, and sturdy. Sounds pretty New England to us.

ALPHA ENGLISH WHITE KITCHEN_A4.jpg

At a clientís request, Clive Christian designed a kitchen that has more modern lines. Here it is shown in English white with soft pastel accent lighting and, of course, a crystal chandelier.

Great design is always at your fingertips ó read the September/October 2013 issue online!

  • E-mail
  • E-mail this article

    Invalid E-mail address
    Invalid E-mail address

    Sending your article

    Your article has been sent.

About this blog

An insider's look at must-have products, fresh trends, and inspired spaces from the team at Design New England magazine.

Gail Ravgiala is editor of Design New England and a fan of both the region's historic architecture and its growing inventory of modern houses and public buildings.

Courtney Kasianowicz is associate editor of Design New England who scouts the area for new design, charming products, and local artisans both innovative and daring.

Jill Connors, Design New England's editor-at-large, is an antiques maven and design scout and will post about trends and discoveries in the field.

Bruce Irving, Design New England's contributing editor for architecture & building, is a renovation specialist who will share his insights on design and construction.

Estelle Bond Guralnick, Design New England's style & interiors editor, will post about interior design and interior designers and her favorite finds.

Real Estate

Globe Home of the Week
Single floor living in Brockton

Single floor living in Brockton

Royal Barry Wills designed this home located on a cul-de-sac in Brockton's West Side.
archives