May 19, 2024

Vicky

Vicky Sanderson: Around the House

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U.S-based furniture brand Burrow was designed to bring function, form, and value to the category with built-to-last modular pieces.

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A burrow, by definition, is a space dug by a small animal, especially a rabbit, that serves as a safe and cozy dwelling.

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As such, it’s a good name for a furniture brand that launched just as a “cocooning” trend was taking off, and only a few years before COVID-19 kicked the instinct to nest into high gear.

U.S-based direct-to-consumer furniture brand Burrow was designed to bring function, form, and value to the category with built-to-last modular pieces that are easy to buy, have delivered, and assemble at home.

Launched in 2017,  the model is meant to eliminate pain points around furniture-buying while offering a high of customization.

Not only has the concept flourished, there are now  showrooms open in several U.S. cities, and the company expanded last year into the Canadian online market.

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Pieces reflect quality, but also good value and thoughtful product design. Research for the sofa line, for example, included reverse-engineering a luxury sectional to understand how to separate it into modules.

In the Range line of sofas, construction is bent plywood, made from sustainably-sourced hardwoods. Panels are single-sheet bent plywood, so there are no weak joints.

The cushions use a combination of medium-density foam, shredded fill, and fiber wadding to give that feathery feel of sinking in — and they’re all certified to be free of formaldehyde, heavy metals, flame retardants, and other dangerous ingredients.

It’s a handsome, hardwearing, sofa, especially when done in a tight olefin weave that repels stains, cleans with a water/bleach solution, and resists animal scratches.

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Because sofas, loveseats, ottomans, and chairs are modular, they can be added to or reconfigured as your family changes. That flexibility also makes them extremely useful to add extra seating in small spaces and awkward corners.

Other pieces include a hardwood bench with a padded seat and a small shelf to put, say, your shopping bag or library books while you take off your shoes.

There are two leg options: I like the classic airiness of hairpin legs, but contemporary straight legs are also a solid choice. Placement of the cushion can also be customized, and walnut and oak finishes are available.

In the same Carta collection there are coordinating coffee and side tables, as well as a customizable credenza.

Convenient features include a built-in USB charger and 72-inch power cord on the Noma sofa. Armrest heights are also customizable — a small detail that can make a big difference in functionality and comfort.

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For storage and display, there are sets of three simple shelves in solid ash that can be added to for a dramatic full-wall  bookcase.

That’s made possible by two mounting positions on the back of each shelf: the frame can go in the outer position for solo or vertical arrangements, or the inner position to accommodate a wide, horizontal arrangement. Hardware is included and there’s a template poster that makes mounting easy.

Upholstered pieces are available in a variety of fabrics, foot styles, and finishes.  In some cases,  there are reversible back cushions, with one side a classic tuft, the other smooth and contemporary.

Among the fabrics, I particularly like the look of the performance velvet, which comes in midnight blue, jade, and feather grey.

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Swatches can be ordered, and probably should for furniture investments of this size. An inspiration section on the website gives a good sense of how pieces look in a room, and has loads of ideas for configuring the modular sections.

If you’re shopping for outdoor furniture, Burrow has just released the Relay Collection, made from powder-coated, galvanized steel that won’t rust, and all-weather fabric that repels liquids, dirt, and UV rays. Judging from the looks, it’s just as sensible, and just as stylish, as its indoor counterparts.

Vicky Sanderson is the editor of Around the House. Check her out on Instagram@athwithvicky, Twitter ATHwithVicky and Facebook.com/ATHVicky.ca.

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