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ILVA Stories

Welcome back the 60s

2021 marked the 60th anniversary of when ILVA opened their doors to customers for the very first time. Back then, the name was J.L. Møbler (J.L. Furniture), and every piece of furniture sold in the store was designed specifically for ILVA. Since then, a lot has changed, including the name, the processes, and the current trends, but to celebrate their 60th anniversary, ILVA decided to go back to basics in terms of both looks and processes.

After several decades where the product assortment was mainly built by picking and choosing the best products from suppliers, in recent years, ILVA has gone back to working more and more with designers to create unique ILVA products. A tendency that was carried on in the development of their 60th anniversary celebratory product line.

Based on original, hand-drawn ILVA ads from the 60s, ILVA asked selected designers to develop a new line of products, reinterpreting the original drawings to celebrate their heritage while tapping into current trends.

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The result is a line of furniture for the living room, dining room and bedroom made in a characteristic 60s style with dark wood and textile surfaces combined with contemporary touches such as a leather detail on the armrest of the sofa and armchair.

Another modern twist which, however, is not visible to the eye, is the fact that the line has been developed with a focus on sustainability. This has led to the use of upcycled textiles made from olefin – a byproduct of the oil industry. The fabric can be shredded down to its fibres and remade into new fabrics up to ten times. Other elements carry sustainably minded certificates, such as the OEKO-TEX label.

The anniversary line has been on display in the foyer of ILVA’s stores allowing customers to see the line as a whole rather than as single products dispersed across different sections of the store, and it has become a great conversation piece: "The line speaks to several generations in different ways. Those who can remember the sixties tend to stop and reminisce about the old days, while the younger audience finds the pieces very attractive and stylish. All in all, it has led to some great conversations with our customers," explains Jane Schmüchker Høegh, Head of Design, ILVA.

To her, the positive response to the retro inspired line is not surprising: "When things get uncertain, we tend to look back to better times and find comfort in revisiting past trends as a way to reminisce about the good old days. That is what we have experienced during Covid where trends from the 50s, 60s and 70s have resurfaced, and to us, our anniversary line has been the perfect way to tap into that trend while celebrating our heritage."

Not the ugly ducklings

… but the first sofas carrying the Swan label. In the fairytale of H.C. Andersen, the cygnet looks nothing like the ducklings. Being the only sofas with the Nordic Swan Ecolabel, Holiday and Lavello also stand out from the rest of the sofas in ILVA. With timeless design at an affordable price, the sofas represent one more step in ILVA's journey towards becoming a more sustainable business. Alongside the sofas, ILVA offers duvets and pillows as well as beds with top mattresses carrying the Nordic Swan Ecolabel.

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The Holiday and Lavello sofas, which were approved for the certification in June and September 2020 respectively, are the first sofas in ILVA's assortment to carry the Nordic Swan Ecolabel. The sofas play a large part in ILVA's commitment to sustainability; a commitment that resulted in a sustainability strategy based on the Global Goals in late 2020. "We want to be a responsible business, and you cannot say 'responsibility' without saying 'sustainability'.

ILVA has already begun the journey, and even though I do not believe that such a journey will ever be done, I am truly proud that we now have a focused approach to sustainability. We can take responsibility and make a positive difference in areas that affect the environment.", says Rami Jensen, CEO at ILVA.  Among other things, the strategy defines focus areas, such as an increase of products carrying environmental and health certifications like the Nordic Swan Ecolabel, OEKO-TEX® and FSC®.