Nathalie de Leval is a furniture designer
and maker, whose work ranges from bespoke
commissions and products, to design for
furniture production. Originally a sculptor,
she studied cabinet making to improve her
making skills, and discovered a passion for
furniture which led to an MA in furniture
design at the Royal College of Art. In 2014
she was invited by Sir Paul Smith to
collaborate on the ‘Wishlist’ as part of the
London Design Festival. The result, Paul’s
Shed, quickly became something of a
celebrity in its own right.
Nathalie and Paul Smith next to Paul's Shed at the V&A
Nathalie and Paul Smith next to Paul's Shed at the V&A
‘In this highly commercialised world it is so nice to discover someone who is so hands on, not only in terms of her design but also in the making of her furniture. Nathalie’s understanding of the materials she works with is really amazing, she combines this with fantastic craftsmanship to make something truly contemporary.’
Sir Paul Smith
The model-making workshop
The model-making workshop
Everyday our lives are surrounded by furniture, using it for many of our daily activities. It is this intimate relationship that makes Nathalie passionate about the role good furniture can have on people’s lives. She cares deeply about designing and making furniture that lasts. Her designs are driven by the importance of having a clear understanding of the needs and demands of her clients. Through extensive model making to refine and develop ideas, and her skill as a cabinet maker understanding materials and craft, Nathalie strives for her furniture to transcend our throw away culture, and become pieces that are loved and cared for over many years.
With Luciano Giubbilei
With Luciano Giubbilei
Photography by Andrew Montgomery