The design team plays a very important role at Morgan. As well as the Design Director Katerina McMahon, we have a team of five furniture and product designers, chosen over the years from the best UK design colleges. We also take interns every year so that we can help graduates learn and understand our industry. We believe that team work achieves greater results than working in isolation and have regular brainstorming sessions going through new ideas and design development.
Some of our briefs are the result of a customer request for a bespoke solution for a project. Our primary focus however is to research the market and develop the brief based on current trends and gaps in our collection. Our design studio is full of inspiration: we surround ourselves with prototypes, fabrics, materials samples, fittings and of course mood boards.
We all sketch ideas individually, on paper or iPad, and these are proposed and reviewed in a collective way.
The favourite designs are allocated to one or two people each, who will then follow the product through to the detailed design, manufacturing drawings and prototyping.
We believe in constructive criticism but also in a thorough review of the design concept so we end up with a product for the market that fits our brand and responds to our customers needs. Inspired, innovative product collections, fit for purpose and good value are key words in our design process.
We always start with sketches, but using 3D CAD renders allows us to evolve the design further with greater accuracy; the team uses this time to tweak the design before the construction of the frame.
One by one the Morgan team critique and review the product as and when required. We work backwards towards the frame from the upholstery, considering details such as piping, thickness of fabric, critical dimensions, padding, webbing, wood thicknesses and joints.
We issue prototyping with a 3D rendered upholstered chair, alongside construction drawings at a 1:1 scale, front, side and plan. Using the main factory machines and many different hand tools the structure begins and the prototype starts to take on a tangible form. All components are then detailed and joint methods assessed.
The next stage is to test the strength and comfort. We experiment with foam density and shape and different upholstery fabrics. The frame is prepared for upholstery using webbing and hessian fabric; we then apply the foam composition.
Prototyping can take between 2-6 months to get a final design result. There may be 3 different types of frame made, which show the progression stages to the final product.