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Furniture from Donna Karan Urban Zen Collection
The Urban Zen Furniture Collection from Donna Karan is in keeping with her philosophy of treating the home as an inner sanctum. Also in keeping with what is a tradition for Donna Karan, the Urban Zen collection is inspired by her travels.
In this case, while traveling, Donna Karan was impressed by Balinese artisans and how "strong, simple and authentic" Balinese furniture was. The furniture made from teak can look good whether you place it indoors or outdoors.
However, the most immediate source of inspiration is her own Bali made furniture fashioned out of teak wood. Visitors to her home had admired it and expressed a desire to own something similar.Continue to 2 of 5 below.
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The Design Process
For a piece of furniture to truly complement a lifestyle, it should have not just superior craftsmanship, but also the right scale and aesthetics that appeal to the user.
When designing the furniture for her own home, Karan decided to bring her own sense of style into play. While she greatly admired its beauty and craftsmanship, Karan felt that she needed to go beyond the traditional Balinese furniture to find pieces that worked with how she lived.
To create sophisticated yet versatile furniture more attuned to an urban lifestyle, she collaborated with the Bonetti Kozerski Studio while also working closely with Balinese artisans to produce designs that are at once modern, elemental, yet highly functional.Continue to 3 of 5 below.
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Customization and Finishes
All the furniture in the Urban Zen Collection is handmade in Bali.
Karan says that this furniture is meant to complement any lifestyle and is meant for living, whether you are relaxing or entertaining. It is meant to be comfortable. There is ample cushioning to offset the strong lines and angles. Along with the contrasting hard lines and soft pillows, the generous scale also creates an interesting balancing effect.
The furniture pieces are all customizable with a variety of colors and stains. You can choose from natural, aged, golden honey, brown or black lacquer. However, it is all made from teak, it is all one of a kind, and handmade.Continue to 4 of 5 below.
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Suitable for Outdoors or Indoor
The Urban Zen collection has furniture and accessories for the entire home, including beds, chairs, sofas, and tables.
Teak is a very hardy, beautiful and versatile wood. It is one of the easiest materials to maintain, and even in its natural state, it can maintain its looks without too much care. It can last for years and may be used easily in outdoor settings without fear of damaging the wood.
The Urban Zen collection plays up the beauty of the wood in a very simple yet sophisticated way. The teak furniture is equally at home outdoors in open spaces, decks, terraces, and patios.Continue to 5 of 5 below.
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Donna Karan Urban Zen Collection and the Urban Zen Foundation
While beautiful enough on its own, the Urban Zen collection plays another role, too.
Karan strongly believes that "the intersection of philanthropy and commerce" can solve many of the problems besetting today's world. She founded the Urban Zen Foundation which aims to raise awareness and inspire change in the areas of well-being, preserving cultures and empowering children.
You could say that the Urban Zen collection is the commerce part of the equation which complements the philanthropic Urban Zen Foundation.
The furniture collection serves to preserve the Balinese culture by empowering the artisans who created it and contributes 10% of its net sales to the Urban Zen Foundation.