The girls of Niermann Weeks gave an informative talk recently, discussing the old and new methods of designing, fabricating, and finishing their extraordinary products. Since NW is one of my favorite companies, I was very interested in meeting the daughters of founder Joe Niermann and hearing about "how the magic happens." A family business founded in 1978, all the products handmade in Maryland, are classically inspired with their design aesthetic relating equally well to both traditional and contemporary interiors.
The talk began with their most popular chandelier, the Raj, one that I used in a client's home (above). It was inspired by an antique original seen in Paris. Nierman Weeks broke it down, piece by piece, and they rebuilt, piece by piece, for today's modern homeowner.
Everything begins with an auto CAD drawing and a cardboard cutout. It's tweaked and perfected before it goes on to the fabricator to be made in metal. The girls explained there is a lot of trial and error in mocking up designs this way. The integrity of the product, performance, practicality, and beauty of something this special is well worth all the aggrevation! All their pieces are very labor intensive. The beading takes days, and the gold or silver leafing is done with a deft hand.
The CAD drawing files go to the Rhino 3-D printer to make up a jig, then off to the metal shop.
Neirmann Weeks talked a lot about their collaboration with Amanda Nisbet, celebrating their 1 year anniversary in May. Vintage inspired metal lighting and furniture feature Amanda's unique viewpoint. The collection pushes NW out of their comfort zone, but they welcome the challenge. Amanda is known for her bold use of color and classic designs juxtaposed with glamorous pieces which reside nicely within the same space. Nierman Weeks meticulous work ethic makes them perfect partners for creative collaboration; a match made in design heaven!
Amanda found a vintage throne-like metal chair in her travels and loved the idea of reinterpreting it. Keeping its klismos shape, but making it look mesh-like with the metal cutouts to give it a more of a decorative effect, and finishing it in a white wash, are all crucial design details that make or break the success of a product.
You can never underestimate the smallest of details
The Cielo Chair in leather is as decorative as it is comfortable.
Anything is equal opportunity inspiration, including this pair of little blossom earrings; turns out it makes a beautiful pendant light!
An antique campaign bed and the greek key pattern were married into a new, unique bed with an upholstered headboard and rails built for comfort and strength. Their pieces are truly as beautiful as much as they are well made!
Nierman Weeks welcomes the opportunity to create custom orders. Working with designers and serving the needs of the industry along with being able to deliver their products in a timely manner makes this company exceptional in many ways!
One of the inevitable issues with creating a beautiful product is being copied. When asked how they felt about being knocked off, which they have been MANY times by MANY different companies, Claire and Eleanor said in unison, "Be flattered and be faster!"
To see more on their production process, check out their website here
ph: CLI & Niermann Weeks