Felix Furniture was launched by Antonia Morrongiello and her partner Ian Anderson in 2014. Antonia, a graduate of Interior Design and Decoration at RMIT, leads the design side of things, while Ian, who has a background in cabinet making, heads up the making side of the business. ‘After we finished our very first set of bedside tables, we knew we were on to something, and that we had to pursue it or we would regret it!’ Antonia tells.
Three years on, their latest collection breaks new ground for the pair, and as Antonia explains, ‘…is all about how it feels under hand.’ The tactile range combines unlikely textures, championing the brand’s signature material, plywood, alongside a new addition – cork. Their newest pieces, including the Kork Buffet and Entertainment Unit pair natural cork with American Oak.
Early last year, Antonia was working at her desk when a cork jar lid on the window sill caught her eye. ‘I grabbed the lid, took it down to Ian in the workshop and started to look at this material alongside our different types of plywood’ she explains. After some research, the pair found themselves drawn to cork for its inherently sustainable qualities – it is harvested directly from the tree just once every nine years, allowing for crucial regeneration.
Antonia’s father was also a furniture maker, and has bestowed upon the pair a great appreciation for what it means to be able to make something from scratch with your hands. ‘When it came to buying furniture ourselves, we were shocked at how much poorly made, imported, cheap replica furniture there was in market,’ says Antonia. She and Ian hope to counter this trend in their own small way, putting out good, honest design, using sustainably-sourced materials, with an ongoing commitment to making things locally.