Well known for its luxurious Mongolian lambswool beanbags, fine-art trained furniture design group Precious McBane has taken stock after seven years in business and turned its attentions to interior design. Buoyed by new commissions to design the interior of a floating Thames restaurant and a hotel for artists in the Lake District, principals Evlynn Smith and Meriel Scott are confident that this new direction will prove a fulfilling and commercial change for the better. ‘Our training is in sculpture. We’ve been trying to move away from furniture and get into bigger projects. It’s wonderful working with space and light,’ says Scott.
For the Lottery-funded hotel project at the Grizedale sculpture park, the group is working with architect Sutherland Hussey to purchase work, design and commission pieces from artists and designers such as Michael Young and Michael Marriott. In a separate project, they are collaborating with artist Gary Hume on tweed furniture. ‘Because our background is fine art, it’s more in keeping with our sensibilities in the first place,’ says Smith. ‘We know who we want and we’re bringing in lots of designers who they [the clients] might not have exposure to. It’s an eclectic project that allows us to extend the collaboration process and stops us getting stale.’ The next few years should see the consultancy on its way in their new interiors direction. ‘We’re sticking our fingers in lots of different pies and seeing what comes up,’ says Smith.