Of old materials emerges the most soulful creations, whether cabinets, beds or entire kitchens.



Of old materials emerges the most soulful creations, whether cabinets, beds or entire kitchens.

Furniture designer Katrin Arens parts her life between Dusseldorf in Germany and Bergamo in Italy. I’ve been visiting her in her amazingly inspiring place in Villa d`Adda half an hour outside Bergamo.

Katrin and her overwhelming happy youngster dog named Lea warmly welcomes me when I arrive, a bit delayed due to some communication problems with the taxi driver.

The large building in witch she has both her office, workshop and showroom used to be aspinning mill. In the workshop, three craftsmen right now work intensively with a custom bed / wardrobe solution for a customer.

In the entire second floor, she has furnished a most amazing showroom with all the classic furniture for which she has become so well known.


The sun floods into the large windows giving it an almost unreal feeling to see all the things so common to me through interiormagazines, books, and not least on pinterest. Now I am standing right in front of them! Being able to touch and walk amongst her things while Katrin herself follows me around and tells me their stories- it is simply a wonderful experience.

Katrin tells me she has now lived in the area for 20 years. After graduating Art School she simply never went home, and though she still spends her summers in Germany, it is here in northern Italy she lives with her two daughters of 11 and 16 years.

While she previously produced much individual furniture she today increasingly works with more integrated interior projects. Kitchens, bathrooms and bedrooms mostly. Previously, she was also doing textiles but she now concentrates on the furniture production. Common for all of Katrins design is the beautiful feeling of simplicity.  The common frase “less is more” would be a good definition of her work, yet it will not describe the softness and the feeling of warmth I also get from here furniture.

All the material she uses are old and from the surrounding areas. After a few days on the road in the district it is easy to see that the supply of materials should be secured. Everywhere are old buildings, ready to be torn down . Katrin can also tell stories about great craftsmen in the area. The districts has great traditions for craft, but now this knowledge are in danger all the time Italian authorities’ requirements for documentation, training and bureaucracy throttles profits for small businesses. Katrin is concerned about this and would like to contribute . She therefore strives to involve different types of crafts in her project, and buy services by the local artisans in rural areas. She is also planning to take locally produced crafts for sale in her online store. I will definitely write more about that later.

Katrin says that about 80% of revenue comes from her Italian customers. The remaining 20% re from the rest of the world, she can not remember having a single mission in Norway. Would it not be about time?

Katrins furniture exudes a sophisticated yet humble attitude to life. The minimal lines of her design allows the materials to tell the story. It is great art makingfurniture this naked but still so rich.


Please vistit Katrins website to see more amazing furniture design.