It may have been her husband, Hans Knoll, who founded Knoll Furniture, but make no mistake about it: Florence Knoll is no side note when it comes to the story of Knoll furniture. Having attended the iconic Cranbrook Academy in Detroit, Florence headed to New York in 1941. There, she met Hans Knoll, who had founded Knoll Furniture three years prior. Knoll convinced Florence to join the company, and five years later, the couple married. As an employee of Knoll, Florence spearheaded a number of collaborations with famous designers she’d met during her Cranbrook years, including Eero Saarinen, Mies van der Rohe, and Harry Bertoia. The results of these collabs include design icons like the Tulip Table, the Barcelona chair, and the Diamond Chair, respectively. Early on in her Knoll tenure, Florence also cut the ribbon on the Planning Unit, Knoll’s in-house office design firm. When Planning Unit projects called for an efficient line of sofas, accent chairs, and tables, Florence hit the drawing board to design them. Rooted in fuss-less Mid-Century Modern design, Florence Knoll sofas and Florence Knoll chairs are neat, rectangular-shaped pieces featuring all over upholstery and linear tufting. Since modular seating that could easily be built into sets and broken apart was of the utmost importance to Florence, Florence Knoll benches, ottomans, and love seats were also added to her collection. Florence also designed case pieces, such as credenzas. Like Florence Knoll seating, Florence Knoll credenzas are simply designed. Featuring a minimalist rectangle shape, their true beauty is the multiple ways in which they can be customized. Florence was also adamant about having multiple marble options for the tops of her credenzas and different woods for the body. It might do without saying, by Florence loved an option (or twenty).
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