This month we had a chat to CCSS in Melbourne. An online shop started by Clare & Sonam, it began as a project to decorate their warehouse apartment in Collingwood. The pair soon discovered their knack for sourcing one-of-a-kind treasures.
CCSS is the result of the duo’s tireless endeavours to seek out unique vintage, mid century & modern furniture. Each piece of furniture has a story and has had an incredible journey.
Check out what Claire and Sonam had to say below!
Tell us a little bit about CCSS - who's behind this amazing brand?
My partner Clare and I (Sonam) started CCSS as a way to travel to great locations and work with beautiful objects on a daily basis. Clare has always had a particularly keen eye for digging up treasures. This combined with her career in design perpetuated our ability to source, style and create furniture and objects. I've always been a hands on person so I take more of the operational role and make things happen. Luckily we have met and work with some really great people across different disciplines that makes our jobs easier.
You make/source incredible mid-century furniture - what inspires you?
It's a combination of our intrigue and the process of learning. When we could travel, we would walk all the streets and try to get to every street market, antique /design fair and furniture dealer. We see pieces that we absolutely loved and even some we despised. We research these to understand their story of how they came to be and why they are so intriguing to us.
Were you always interested in furniture?
Yes. I was always into design and even took woodwork as a final subject in high school. This yielded a mid century inspired coffee table I still have to this day. My interest lay dormant until my late 20s as the idea of settling and nesting made more sense.
A lot of the pieces are timeless - tell us a story about your favourite piece?
There's been a few that have been incredibly hard to part with. But one that we are just about to release is something we are very proud of. It's a Mario Bellini, Le Bambole sofa suite. Made my B&B Italia in the 1970s. It's one of the true master pieces that combines function and form seamlessly and it's just beautiful to view at any angle. We've just had it recovered in a white woollen fabric to look like a cloud.
Tell us about your new venture Make Believe?
Make Believe was inspired by the idea of making sculptural pieces that could accent any room. Most of our favourite designers and designs create products that mutually function as designed and sit as art within a room. This was our aim. It's been an immensely collaborative process with our lighting designer, painter and manufacturers.
What do you recommend for people wanting to get into business?
Be open to anyone and anything, opportunities don't always come as expected. Make sure you have a strong identity of your business in terms of ethics and processes. It makes decisions alot easier.
5 best tips and tricks for styling a home?
It's all trial and error
Never stop - it should always evolve as you do.
Draw it up - it helps eliminate some of your ideas and cut down the trial and error process.
Look at precedents - draw upon your interests and aesthetics.
Work with the room/space - you need to coerce the space to deliver what you want. If you go against the architecture it shows.
Where to next?
We are hoping to get a few more products off the drawing board and into reality.
We really want to get to the US to source whenever that's possible.
How did you find using Gilly's Products?
All products feel natural and don't have any toxic smells. The finished products look, feel and smell amazing.
What was your favourite product?
The liquid beeswax delivers stunned results. We use it to finish off our monocot bed heads now. The leather cream works incredibly well. We have vintage leather sofas come across the world in shipping containers and the cream brought them back to life with ease.
Why do you love Gilly's?
Great products derived from great ingredients with a sustainable ethos. They are doing it how it should all be done!
Follow their journey