Author Archives: Andrew Knight

More recognition for our award winning furniture!

Another couple of British furniture awards to pop under our belt (or should we say Coffee table?)

We still don’t go out of our way to seek these but we are always pleased to get them so we thought we’d just update last years posts before getting on with our work.

BUILD Architecture Awards 2024Best Bespoke Industrial-Style Furniture Manufacturer 2024 – South West England

UK Enterprise Awards 2024 hosted by SME News.  Sustainable Designer Furniture Retailer of the Year 2024 – South West England

Last year we won the following three three awards:

Global Awards Winners Guide 2023/24 Luxury Furniture Retailer of the Year.

Southern Enterprise awards – Best Sustainable Home & outdoor Furniture Brand 2023
Build Magazine. Architecturehttps://corporatelivewire.com/awards Awards 2023 -Best Custom Industrial-Style Furniture Studio 2023 – South West England – https://www.build-review.com/winners/iron-fire/
https://www.build-review.com/build-magazine-announces-the-winners-of-the-2023-architecture-awards/
We are never sure about the culture of Awards, and we certainly don’t put ourselves forward for them. But it also seems like being a bit backwards if we don’t tell anyone when we get one! In fact, this year, we have been awarded 3 and we should say thanks for the acknowledgement and recognition!

www.iron-fire.co.uk

It’s a difficult balance – we want to promote our environmentally friendly furniture but at the same time we’re disdainful of boasting about what we do (which is just, a common sense approach most makers should be following?)

Even if we all make our best efforts we can always improve and of course we all eagerly consume the comforts we’ve come to take for granted. That means there’s not really anything for any manufacturer to boast about and it’s irritating to see TV adverts crowing about some blue chip’s ecological awareness when they could do so much more.  Of course any improvement is a step forward, and In fact in a global economy it’s difficult to make a meaningful personal contribution and only too easy to forget that the answer has to be lots of people changing their habits – just a bit.

It’s good too that people are starting to realise how much fast furniture contributes to global warming. Fast furniture items are mass produced and shipped around the world, sold at budget prices allowing us to quickly and cheaply update our homes. The impact, however, on global forests and landfill is horrendous and it’s estimated that, just in the UK, we throw away 22 million bits of furniture every year. That’s a lot of stuff that ends up in landfill and uses many toxins in the production of chipboard and synthetic fabrics, not to mention having being shipped around the globe.

Fast Furniture. What’s so wrong with it?

People keep asking us what Fast Furniture is and why we are so opposed to it.

Perhaps the reason people don’t understand the damage this issue causes is the name?

Fast Furniture sounds pretty innocuous, doesn’t it? Combatting the climate crisis however has got to be all of us making lots of small but better choices, and Fast Furniture is way up there with all the other problems that shouldn’t be beyond the wit of man to change!

In fact, effective solutions are not difficult and at Ironfire we are proud to be a bit simple and don’t think that we need to greenwash our products or change our practices to make things that are a lot more sustainable. We’ve described our solution to each of the issues that make Fast Furniture such a bad thing, right at the end of this blog and we think you’ll be surprised at how easy it is to make furniture better to use, look at and own. So see what you think?

Fast Furniture is furniture that is produced quickly, often using low-cost materials and manufacturing processes. It’s designed to be affordable and readily available, catering to current trends and fashion. Being largely produced at unbelievably low costs, retailers can afford to offer long, interest free finance and flash showrooms.

However, mass produced, cheap Furniture has many significant environmental and social impacts:

Environmental Impact production involves intensive use of natural resources, – wood, metals textiles and of course, plastics. This is a major contributor to deforestation, habitat destruction, and pollution. Additionally, the energy-intensive manufacturing processes and transportation of furniture around the world in ships contribute to greenhouse gas emissions and climate change.

The following link leads to a fascinating easy to read article about the environmental impact of shipping stuff around the world so we can pay high prices for what cost pennies.

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2018/04/if-shipping-were-a-country-it-would-be-the-world-s-sixth-biggest-greenhouse-gas-emitter/

If the global shipping industry were a country, it would be the sixth-largest emitter of greenhouse gases in the world, falling between Japan and Germany.

Waste Generation. Cheap Furniture is often made with lower-quality materials, meaning it has a short lifespan. As a result, it is discarded and replaced, leading to high levels of furniture waste. This waste typically ends up in landfills, where it can take a long time to decompose and releases harmful substances into the atmosphere. UK households dump an estimated 670,000 tonnes of furniture each year. That’s a staggering amount of unnecessary waste?

https://wrap.org.uk/sites/default/files/2020-09/WRAP-Furniture – bulky waste summary.pdf

Social Implications. The Fast Furniture industry’s culture of low-cost production often leads to poor working conditions and low wages for workers, particularly in developing economies.

Planned Obsolescence. A lot of cheap furniture is intentionally designed to wear out quickly or break easily and very, very rarely replacement parts are available.

To address environmental and social concerns of Fast Furniture, we should apply these sustainable practices:

Use of Sustainable Materials Furniture companies can choose eco-friendly and renewable materials, such as FSC-certified wood, recycled metals, and low-toxicity finishes.

Design for Durability. Creating furniture with high-quality materials and craftsmanship can extend its lifespan, reducing the need for frequent replacements.

Circular Economy. Implementing circular economy principles involves designing furniture for disassembly, repair, and recycling to minimize waste and maximize resource use.

Responsible Production Manufacturers can improve their production processes to reduce energy consumption and emissions and implement responsible waste management practices.

Promote Conscious Consumerism. Encouraging consumers to make informed choices about their furniture purchases, considering factors like sustainability, durability, and ethical production practices.

It’s all very well spouting off about getting rid of Fast Furniture! So here’s how we meet all the aims below in a very straightforward way.

Lots of companies lay claim to sustainability but how many are jumping on the bandwagon without really contributing anything? At Ironfire our commitment is – slow furniture!Our furniture is made entirely in Britain from renewable English timber. It’s difficult to always know exactly where our Galvanised metal comes from, so our steel strategy is on make it once and make it to last as the most effective sustainable strategy!

Repair –  Spare parts always available and easy to fit
Renew –  Change colours and refresh Ironfire pieces easily and at little cost.
Robust –  Metal is thick and galvanised before being powder coated – Victorian
engineering simple elegant but strong
Recycle – Metal and wood are easily separatable, and toughened glass can be
recycled if kept apart from other glass.
Choice – Wide range of sizes, hard or softwood formats and so many finishes.
Looks –   Ironfire furniture is the centre piece of any room with the beauty of
natural hand -crafted materials
Price –    Buy direct from us, we make a living and you save retail markups –

Worried about buying online? Look at our Trust Pilot and Google reviews!
We can also give you 12 months interest free to help spread the load.

www.iron-fire.co.uk

Tortoiserie – Tortoise House Table

We are so happy we found Iron-fire’s website, after looking for so long, we just couldn’t find the right table to adapt to suit our tortoise Gracie.

We had a tortoise table but it was small and looked like an enclosure, we wanted a piece of furniture where we could have Gracie living in our space with us, that was large enough and comfortable for her. Andrew and Kiran immediately took up the challenge and went above and beyond to help us. We wanted to use the template of their console table as it gave enough height for a heat and light source and enough room to move around in, giving warm and cool areas. They researched and sourced all the materials and made sure they were tortoise friendly. They came up with the name Tortoiserie which we love! if we could give them 11 out of 10 we would!

Thank you so, so much, we absolutely will be in touch for a dining room table soon (just need to save a few pennies after the extension!).

Yvette

Pleased to see that we have been quietly picking up awards this year!

Global Awards Winners Guide 2023/24 Luxury Furniture Retailer of the Year.

Southern Enterprise awards – Best Sustainable Home & outdoor Furniture Brand 2023
Build Magazine. Architecture Awards 2023 -Best Custom Industrial-Style Furniture Studio 2023 – South West England – https://www.build-review.com/winners/iron-fire/

BUILD Magazine Announces the Winners of the 2023 Architecture Awards


We are never sure about the culture of Awards, and we certainly don’t put ourselves forward for them. But it also seems like being a bit backwards if we don’t tell anyone when we get one! In fact, this year, we have been awarded 3 and we should say thanks for the acknowledgement and recognition!

www.iron-fire.co.uk

It’s a difficult balance; wanting to market yourselves, but at the same time being disdainful of boasting about the things we do, which is just, after all common sense.

Even when one is making best efforts we can always improve and besides we’re all avid consumers of the comforts we have been brought up to take for granted. There’s not really anything for any manufacturer to boast about and it’s easy to sit picking apart TV adverts crowing about some blue chip’s new found ecological awareness. Of course any improvement is a step forward, but In a global economy it is diffficult to make a meaningful personal contribution and only too easy to forget that the answer has to be lots of people changing their habits – just a bit.

It’s good too that people are starting to realise how much fast furniture contibutes to global warming. Fast furniture items are mass produced and shipped around the world, sold at budget prices allowing us to quickly and cheaply update our homes. We’re all becoming increasigly aware of the impact fast furniture has on global warming The impact, however, on global forests and landfill is horrendous and it’s estimated that, just in the UK, we throw away 22 million bits of furniture every year. That’s a lot of stuff that ends up in landfill and uses many toxins in the production of chipboard and synthetic fabrics, not to mention having being shipped around the globe.

The New Design

Ironfire's magnus dining table in black and white

Our Dining Table Redesigned

At Ironfire HQ we’ve been developing new pieces for 2022. Today we’re presenting our reimagined Dining Table. The same durability and striking looks but with a modern touch. Within our 7 Smart Furniture Ideas we describe our furniture as “innovative, industrial style… helps you stamp your own personality on your house and garden” this design is testament to that.

Go Straight to dining tables

Before we get into why, here are the logistics. The original legs (shown below) have been updated to minimalistic U-Shaped legs. Though our extra-large tables are perfect for large parties we moved the legs closer into the table top to allow for even more guests at your table. The table top has stayed the same. Why? The formula works. A bold black steel border + customisable size and colour of the wooden top = easily integrated industrial style. And finally, the specifications: our steel is galvanised, and black powder coated, made to be “heavy duty, robust and weatherproof” and our wood is either our durable water-resistant Oak or our specifically dried, primed and charred Douglas Fir (also water-resistant and available in almost any colour). Both full of character for your table.

Large Oak Steel Framed Dining Table
Image of dark burnt wood finish

Speaking of character this new design brings minimalism. It leaves more space underneath the table, more space means less clutter and thus the feeling of a bigger room. To amplify this even further we recommend pairing this design with one of our extra-large mirrors for the illusion of space. Not to mention the added benefits of more light, more appeal, and an easy way to make a statement. In 2022 creating open spacious statement areas  and cohesive interior in your house couldn’t be more of an easy way to fast track to a high end design look aswell as relevant as we’ve spent more time than ever at home. And as our world opens back up the trends have followed, shifting to the idea of a spacious feel to our home being continuous from inside to out.

Ironfire industrial style grey dining table or garden table with matching bench and chairs

It’s important to outline that our Dining Table can adapt to these trends of inside out and outside in. Thanks to its durability this table is easily adaptable into a garden table. The opportunity for you to have Ironfire furniture wherever you see fit is important to us, under a shelter, out in the open, in the sun house, on the patio and of course inside your home too. This new design stays true to this, remaining perfect for inside and out. But what’s new? Thanks to the lighter look our new design is in line with the elevated outdoor furniture trend. Not sure what that is? Elevated outdoor design is the idea that with us spending more time outdoors, our gardens or yards are becoming extensions of our interior requiring more sophisticated furniture. A trend that Ironfire has been prepared for from the get-go.

Ironfire Bistro Table in a designer garden

As well as Ironfire Traditional Japanese interior has also been in line with this idea before it became a trend. But Ironfire has even more links to Japanese inspired interior. The most obvious being our use of a preservation method inspired by Yaki Sugi. Yaki meaning heat with fire and Sugi being a type of Japanese coniferous tree. We quite literally heat coniferous wood (the Douglas fir) with fire to help preserve the wood. The science being that by charring the outside of the wood lightly,

carbonisation occurs making the wood waterproof (adding to the longevity) fire retardant and safer from insect infestations. However, our connections extend beyond Japanese techniques to the design of our new table. The refined look is in touch with the Japanese industrial modern trends. Described by Decoholic as “Simplicity, naturalness, elegance” but with an “emphasis on space, light, and airiness” which we believe is pretty close to what this Ironfire table strives for. They share the same benefits too, simple but sophisticated, easy to maintain etc.

We’ve spoken a lot about trends in this blog but being a sustainable company, we recognise what’s important isn’t bringing out new collections every season to be on trend it’s creating timeless furniture that lives on through each trend, staying modern but also classic. So, what makes us timeless? When we bring out new products, we keep our consistency with original products because we stay so close to our values. This ensures inclusion for our returning customers and plenty of options for the new. It’s an idea we have already touched on, cohesion for everyone available everywhere.

Most companies who prioritise a cohesive collection subsequently lose individuality, their customers have limited options to express their interior style through the product. Being a bespoke company, we believe in giving you as much control over your furniture as possible. You design it, we make it. Within Ironfire this translates to being able to choose between over 200+ colour for your tabletop, you’ve got plenty of size options and even the type of bolt we use can be customised. However, this table adds yet another bespoke feature. The beauty of this simple U-shaped leg is it can be turned 180 degrees to give a completely different style of table leg. Still minimalist, modern and sleek but with a bit of a different spin that may be better suited to your taste. A way for Ironfire to put another element of your furniture into your hands.

Ironfire’s new table isn’t just an exciting addition to our wide range of products, it’s a representation of our company’s values. Durable, lifelong, bespoke, innovative. Don’t hesitate to get in touch to talk about our furniture or your design ideas.

How this Coffee Table can make your life easier…

Dark Stained Oak Coffee Table with Glass Above and Below
Dark Stained Oak Coffee Table with Glass Above and Below

…in less than 3 minutes

Ironfire’s coffee table is made for you, colour, size, and style. So you don’t have to keep endlessly searching. We bring the table to you.

Read on to learn more about our bespoke tables from day dot to delivery.

Hello again,

In our last blog we told you about one of our new products. A re-imagined dining table. But Ironfire isn’t only about creating new products. We’re also about refining classics like our coffee table to our customer’s requirements. That means two things; We aim to deliver personal, tailored customer service and a table right for you. One of the ways we can do this is by offering you choices.

The Ironfire Coffee table is the product which has undergone the most revision and innovation, to make a bespoke piece of furniture. We’ve made extra-large coffee tables and small coffee tables. Coffee table and tv stand sets. Coffee table and side table sets. We’ve matched tables to wallpaper, furniture, even farrow and ball paints, taking the work out of finding a match, making your life easier. In fact, one of ‘our 7 smart furniture ideas’ is to give you a unique piece of personal bespoke furniture. One of our most recent orders perfectly illustrates this.

Extra Large Glass Shelved Coffee Table with Stained English Oak

Chris and his partner ordered an infinity table. A popular variant of our classic coffee tables. They wanted a 900x1400mm table to match the aged oak in their beautiful period sitting room. Not only that but the bolts on our table could match the traditional ceiling beam’s metal studs. To co-ordinate the table to the room we needed to match the natural light oak of our boards to darker oak in a room that was almost 300 miles away. We love a challenge at Ironfire, so we put on our colour mixing hats and put our heads together. A bit of hubble bubble toil and trouble later we had a unique blend of different wood stains and a goldilocks solution – not too dark, not too light, just right? We hoped so, especially having made a match using only photos.

A couple of weeks later we’d finished the table. So, we wrapped it safely and loaded it into the van for delivery with the rest of a round for London and East Anglia. And so, the 6-hour journey to North Norfolk to meet the Wallers and Pennard the Labrador Retriever Cross with their table began. There were a few hours on the motorway, and winding A roads as well as some important stops. The first of which was an installation of a cabinet to an amazon store (for our other company RI). As we drove up the country all a sudden as we turned a corner, what had been fields and towns became the North Sea. Next stop (of course): had to be the seaside to stretch our legs out of the van and along the shore. Third stop: Chris’s house where Pennard and a wonderful house and garden greeted us.

Large Infinity Table with Glass Shelves
Map of norwich showing delivery area

One of the perks of the job is meeting our customers and putting a face to a name. Though it’s especially rewarding with those like Chris where we had worked with him through the process to get the colour as he wanted it. Thankfully our table was cohesive with their furniture, beam and flooring. Not only that but being an infinity table, the glass ensured the table could be in the centre but not intruding. Instead it complimented the light scandi feel to the room.

After a long day of delivering we went through great snoring and little snoring – yes, they are real places! Though we weren’t actually asleep at the wheel sometimes our big journeys can be longsome and tiring. But on days like these they are a pleasure.

In fact, it’s hard not to enjoy them; the sun shining, happy customers, a lovely dog and a brief view of the north sea.

Picture of the North Sea

At Ironfire, the journey of your table isn’t just it traveling up the M4. It starts when we talk to you about your ideas. Continuing as we cut the first piece of wood, all the way to putting together the finishing touches.

Photo of a road in Norwich

In the words of Chris and Shaun – “Thoroughly recommend Ironfire for something just a little extra special and bespoke to enhance home. Both really happy with new coffee table, and extra mile (literally!) taken by Andrew and team to fulfil what we are looking for. Thanks again, Chris, Shaun, plus Pennard “. We love the satisfaction of not only seeing but making your coffee table go from an idea to your sitting room. Only made possible because at Ironfire we do everything ourselves. Bespoke, personal and happy to help. Give us a call to chat about your coffee table.

All About Tables For Your Home From IronFire

Tables for Home

The Best Tables for Your Home

No matter which room of your home you are currently in, I can pretty much guarantee that it will contain a table. A dining table in your kitchen or dining room. A coffee table or side table in your living room. A console table in your bedroom as a dressing table or in your hallway for storage or display. And in your bathroom? Well, maybe that’s pushing my “tables for your home, for every room of your house” theory a little bit too far!

Red industrial style home dining table

If you’re looking to update, replace, or simply need a table for any use or any room of your home then Ironfire can help. We design, build and deliver custom made tables from our Wiltshire workshop directly to your home.

There’s a huge selection of colours and sizes in our range. We also keep our prices affordable and only sell directly from our online furniture store. Dining room tables, Coffee tables, Console tables, Bistro tables and Garden tables.

We can happily fill any room of your home with our furniture! The flexibility of our tabletops means that we are a truly unique furniture company. All wood used to make our tabletops comes from British sustainable forests. That, along with the strong steel frames means that they will last for years without further impacting the environment.

We’re on-hand to answer any design or delivery questions that you may have. We take a real pride in our furniture and we enjoy engaging with our customers. We carefully manufacture Ironfire and hope you will enjoy what we do.

Bistro Table ?

Bistro tables and pedestal tables may not be the first type of table that you think of when online furniture shopping for a garden table or dining table. They are however one of our best-kept secrets. If your kitchen, dining room or patio is just that bit too small for one of our dining tables, a bistro table could be the ideal solution.

Bistro pedestal Table for inside

Ironfire industrial bistro tables are custom made to order in any of the finishes that we have available in our online furniture shop. A rust finish for a real industrial effect; a rustic oak which looks great against the black steel frame or one of our 24 standard colours which can all be viewed on our product pages.

If none of our standard finishes are to your liking, just visit our RAL colour chart which features over 200 additional colours which we can make your Ironfire tabletop in. We’re sure that there will be at least one that matches what you are looking for, and apologies in advance if we have made the decision difficult for you! Our square bistro tables are available in 3 sizes – 75cm x 75cm; 75cm x 100cm and 100cm x100cm.

Let us know at time of purchase if you are going to be using your bistro table inside or outside, and we can ensure that we apply the correct lacquer to it. And for that extra peace of mind, our inside tables have the option of a glass top while our outside tables can have a made to measure cover. Little touches, but ones that matter.

Coffee Tables for your home ?

The centre-piece of living room furniture. The partner to your sofa. The topping for your rug. A coffee table is essential for bringing focus to your living room; bringing all of the living room furniture together.

Not just for aesthetic purposes, a coffee table also gives you somewhere to rest your feet, your mug and to hide your half-made jigsaw puzzle and half-read book under.

Ironfire industrial style coffee tables are custom made to order. Rectangular coffee tables and square coffee tables that are available in 21 sizes to suit small living rooms or larger living rooms – the general rule of thumb when sizing one up is to make sure that you can walk all around it.

Ironfire wooden coffee tables are made using locally sourced wood from renewable forests. The Douglas fir we use with durable and UV stable coatings ensures that our coffee tables will last for years.

Because we sell direct only, our coffee tables makes your money go that extra mile. So we are better for both your pocket and the environment.

Large White Coffee Table living room

Console tables for your home ?

The Ironfire console table: a narrow table available in lots of lengths and with endless uses both inside and outside. And why shouldn’t practical not also be pretty? Small enough to live at the bottom of the stairs as a hallway table. Slim enough to line the wall as part of your living room furniture collection. Our modern console tables make a gorgeous dressing table and garden storage and display of plants.

The smallest of our console tables can be used as a side table or bedside table. With a top and bottom shelf there is plenty of room for your bedside lamp and other essentials.

If that’s too small a size for you, we have 21 sizes of our industrial style console table for you to choose from. Big room, little room – there will be one for your needs. If that isn’t choice enough for you, we offer a rust or oak finish for the tops of your console table. If you want a more rustic look, we have sustainable wooden tops in 24 standard colours. Still not enough choice? We have a RAL colour page with 200 other colours ways to suit all tastes and interiors. Which one will you choose?

industrial console side hall table

Dining Tables for your home?

Made with a strong steel frame and attractive wooden table top. Ironfire contemporary industrial dining tables could be the missing piece in your dining room. Multiple sizes are available whether you’re looking for a 4 or a 12 seater table.

Hot cup proof and sturdy enough to last for years, our dining room tables are a long lasting and worthy investment. Partner them with our dining chairs or benches for a complete dining room furniture solution.

The beauty of Ironfire dining tables is in the adaptability of the table tops themselves. We offer a rust finish which is stunning in its originality. An oak finish for a more classic look. A variety of 24 standard finishes with a burnt wood and coloured effect to stand out. If that’s not enough, choose from many other colours.

Years down the line if you want to update your table, just let us know. We’ll create another new top for you while maintaining the original steel frame. A table top choice that is absolutely second to none.

Garden Tables ?

Are you bored of standard teak garden tables, or painted garden furniture that needs painting every Spring when you pull it out of storage? Ironfire garden furniture can change all of that!

Garden table for your home

All of the tables on our online furniture store can be used both inside and outside. Bistro tables for a small patio table or maybe Console tables for storage or display of plants. Dining tables for larger patio areas and bigger groups of people. Even our coffee tables are ideal for an outside veranda or seating area.

All tables can be finished with a lacquer ensuring longevity outside, meaning you don’t have to worry about storage of them. Our made to measure covers can be selected as an option when you order your table. They make sure that your garden tables are even more protected against any weather blown at them.

Select a tabletop finish for a colour pop in your garden to give a colourful contrast to your patio plants. You can then pair with our garden chairs (which have waterproof cushions) or benches. Then maybe add planters and firepits to create a real Ironfire feel for your garden.

Final Verdict

So, however you are looking to add to your current furniture collection look no further than Ironfire furniture. Affordable, attractive and long-lasting, we make sure that our tables will not only stand the test of time but also complement your interior. It’s the Ironfire way.

Simple Furniture Trends for Winter 2022

Winter can always seem so long drawn out and drab that redecorating, or at least revitalising, your interior at this time of year can be a great way of creating a snug and inviting home that almost hugs you when you come in.

This Winter, there are many key trends that can not only help your home envelop you comfortably, but also that we feel will compliment our IronFire industrial style furniture in a juxtaposition of the materials and the colours.

There are so many to mention that we have picked out just a couple of our key favourites, and all that’s left for you to do is take your IronFire table as a base and then build your winter haven around it.

Grey

No, not the sky, but an choice for winter walls that veers away from the bright colours that may be expected. A grey wall does not have to be cold when the right colour is chosen – I have Farrow and Ball French Grey on my bedrooms walls which is an almost green grey that creates a calm environment. This would work well with the dark metal frames of our tables whether as a dressing table in a bedroom, or a console table in a hallway.

Grey

Farrow and Ball French Gray

Plaid

Straight from the Highlands of Scotland, the dark and warming colours of any plaid or check immediately create a cosiness that warms and cheers. For the more brave hearted (sorry) check an entire wall with a plaid wallpaper. For those a bit more reserved who just want a plaid splash, have a look at Totally Tartan who do a huge range of cushions as well as these great doorstops.

simple trendswinter trends 2017

Dress Up Your Fire

Log burners are all the rage at the moment, heating and creating a gorgeous ambience in the harshest of rooms. Dressed with a mantle or just in a hole in the wall, these are great focal points for a room and manage to be both practical as well as attractive. If you are lucky to have one, rather than using a standard log basket use a steel log and kindling holder to carry on that rustic industrial look alongside your fire. This matching pair is from Bean Metal Works and can be brought via their Etsy shop.

winter furniture trends

Winter is a great time to really enjoy your home and make the most of it, so add these elements to your home and we’ll see you in the Spring when you emerge after your hibernation!

Hygge & Lagom Furniture, Why can’t we be both!

ironfire planters industrial style

2016 was Hygge, 2017 was Lagom…the influence of Nordic trends has made a massive impact on consumers and social media users and their ways of life – what they buy, where they buy it and in fact if they decide to buy it at all.

The theory behind trend of Hygge & Lagom

In the Oxford dictionary as “a quality of cosiness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being (regarded a a defining characteristic of Danish culture)” is a warming sentiment. The Danish are considered to be some of the happiest people in the world and to be hyggeligt is to recognise and enjoy the present. Whether this is alone or with friends (or strangers if that makes you happy!), it is imperative that at that moment in time you feel contented and comfortable. The appreciation of this can be as simple as lighting a favourite candle to create ambience, or enjoying a social event – involving simple rituals in your life that take you away from the dullness of the everyday slog and give you a ready brek type internal glow.

Hygge Furniture

Hygge was a huge influence in 2016, but then in 2017 the Swedes took over the English obsession with Nordic phrases with Lagom. In contrast to Hygge which involves adding elements to your life to make you comfortable, Lagom is about concentrating on the essentials and paring back your life – putting balance and moderation into everything that you do. “Not too little, not too much, just enough” is one of the best ways to apply Lagom; and it is about life as a whole. Unfussy, sustainable and confident; living the Lagom way of life means having only what you need and appreciating what you have.

There seems to be a belief that you can have a Hygge life, or you can have a Lagom life, but you can’t have both. Surely though, with these lifestyle trends, both of which advocate feelings of happiness in your surroundings, appreciation and contentedness, why not take the best elements of both and apply them to your lifestyle in a way that makes you happy?

Lagom Furniture

If Lagom is a way of life – using sustainable products and being frugal – then let us live this functional way of life and pepper it with Hygge moments to maintain a feeling of satisfaction when the minimalist living is getting too much (or not as the minimalist case may be)! Being very British and definitely not Scandinavian (apart from our website guru who is part Nordic and helps us pronounce “Hygge”), at IronFire we think that the best approach is to embrace your favourite principles of each to help you live a contented life that benefits both your happiness, and that of the people and planet around you.

But what is next? With 2022 fast approaching, is another Nordic lifestyle trend on the pared back but cosy horizon? A feeling that you have no intentions of going out but are instead going to stay at home and get drunk in your underwear anyone? This is the definition of the Finnish word “Kalsarikännit”. We’re hoping that as we indulge more in it, it gets easier to say. Sounds to us like a great lifestyle trend and one that will be very popular (just make sure you recycle your bottles, wear underwear that is made of natural fibres and light a candle to make sure that you maintain Hygge and Lagom while doing it).

So at IronFire, how do we use these trends – all of which we admire – in the production of our furniture? We use sustainable sources and local products in the manufacture of our tables and chairs, and guarantee longevity so that constant replacement is not an issue. Wood warm finishes in natural colours; tables that people just want to gather around, and our great prices and customer service that give you a feeling of comfort while purchasing and using our furniture. And our staff? We’re just over here indulging in Kalsarikännit while you decide which of our tabletops you want…..

 

Outdoor Furniture Ideas 2022

Outdoor Furniture Ideas for Entertaining Guests

A bright sunny day is the perfect excuse to throw an outdoor party and invite all your friends. Entertaining inside can be claustrophobic on a hot day, so why not let everybody enjoy the great outdoors? In this Blog, we have some great outdoor furniture ideas for your next garden party. You don’t need a big budget to furnish your garden stylishly and it’s very similar to buying indoor furniture.

4 Outdoor Furniture Ideas for Entertaining Guests

When you’re outside however, you don’t have to worry about a chair not matching your curtains! The main things that you do need to focus on are looks, comfort and weather resistance. Here’s some ideas to help you achieve that:

A Comfortable Wooden Bench Can Make Your Garden Look Magical

A comfortable wooden bench can make your garden look magical

Benches are number one on our list of perfect outdoor furniture ideas. Sited anywhere in your garden they don’t take up much space but have a big impact. Put a bench in the corner on its own or with an garden dining table so that everyone can eat together as one big family. Your guests can then choose how close or far apart they want to sit with each other!

A bench doesn’t have to look quaint and traditional as if you’re sitting feeding ducks in the park. You can order a customised, bespoke Ironfire Industrial bench with unique and modern colours. These sturdy benches are real statement pieces! They even seem to entice people to pose on them for social media snaps.

Ironfire also lets you choose if you want a back to your bench. A dining bench with an angled backrest is more comfortable and a bit safer. Very useful if someone has a few too many drinks and needs to lean back to emphasize the punchline in a joke. A bench without a back is easier for access though, which is why Ironfire gives you both choices to suit your needs.

Unlike plastic chairs, benches can be securely bolted down to stop them flying away, like Mary Poppins in a storm. Our benches are constructed from long-lasting, sustainable British materials. They can have optional covers for extra rain and snow protection.

Create a Hypnotic Flame Effect With an Outdoor Fire Pit

Create a hypnotic flame effect with an outdoor Fire Pit

A fire pit is a fantastic addition to your garden or patio. It creates a focal point for guests to sit around and keep warm. Nothing beats the warming blaze of a real fire, it’s a true crowd pleaser and creates a romantic ambience. Our portable, solid, steel fire pits can stand on their own, or sit in a sleek and elegant planter at table height. This way, you don’t have to worry about cleaning up ash afterwards or burning any grass.

A fire pit acts as a heater to make chilly guests feel warm and cosy. They’re a huge hit with any crowd and help to extend an evening as it gets cooler. People love to sit around fire pits roasting marshmallows in summer but also in a huddle while stargazing in winter. A fire pit is pretty much a must have for throwing a memorable party.

Ironfire Dining Tables are Fit for a Feast

Ironfire dining tables are fit for a feast

A solid wood table is both durable and stylish for hosting garden dinner parties. It has a long-lasting chunky build to withstand all the harsh elements that the UK’s weather will throw at it. Rain, wind or UV rays are all protected against. There are even a range of weatherproof covers available to keep them clean. Ironfire dining tables are affordable, contemporary garden furniture designs with an industrial theme. They are environmentally sustainable and built for long life. With loads of shapes and sizes to choose from, you can easily find the right sized table for you.

Now you really can have Dark Grey garden Furniture (as shown in the picture above). You can also have Pink, Blue, Red, Green or any other paint colour You can then accommodate all your guests for a mouth-watering barbie. The all British hand-made design is elegant and beautiful. Ironfire tables also let you customise and make your own unique piece. You don’t need to use a table cloth as you won’t want to hide the painted, burnt or distressed finishes. The toughness of the finishing keeps everything looking good too. Pick the colour of the table to match the chairs, benches, or even your favourite party dress. The choice is yours.

Create Comfortable Feature Settings Around the Garden

Outdoor Furniture Ideas 4: Create comfortable feature settings around the garden

As well as benches, you can use Ironfire chairs to create many different seating areas around your garden. Cheap plastic chairs get damaged easily or blow away with a strong wind. They’re also not very sustainable or planet friendly. Most of the Rattan chairs that are fashionable right now are plastic coated too.

Few of them are comfortable enough for both dining and relaxing in. Chairs should have snug cushions for you to sit on all day long. Nobody wants to carry cushions in and out of storage every time you snatch some sunshine either. Ironfire make covers for most of their outside range to help keep them clean and dry!

Ironfire take a very different approach. Our cushions are truly waterproof and can live outside. They need to stay clean and dry though. So we make covers for these super comfy, chunky heavy weight Ironfire chairs too!

We also use UV resistant cushion cover materials to withstand the strongest rays of the sun. These stylish multipurpose chairs work perfectly indoors as well.

For more ideas and information, check out our full product catalogue.

Industrial Fast Furniture

Industrial Style Dining Table

What is Fast Furniture?

Recent research shows that millenials prefer to spend their money on experiences rather than investing it back into anything but essentials for their homes; and other constraints can often mean that the money to invest in furniture is just not available.

Due to this, people are looking to mass-produced furniture that is first and foremost cheap and functional. If you are looking for a quick fix, fundamentally there is no problem with this. However, the furniture is not built to last. Cracking when being put together, and not withstanding day to day life (especially when there are children involved!) can mean replacing the furniture within two or three years – so altogether a false economy.

To produce furniture at this low cost, wood used is generally not from a sustainable source. Cheap imports from Russian and Eastern European forests are illegally logged meaning the devastation of natural fish and wildlife habitats, and the decline of many varieties of trees including oak, ash and birch. The demand for cheap, Chinese made furniture has started a cycle which is destroying the worlds forests and wildlife at an alarming rate. And surprisingly, a lot of furnitures big players are not impartial to this.

Another way of producing cheap furniture is to get it made by a cheap workforce. Vietnamese and Indian children are often employed on a mass scale to produce the parts for the desks and tables, while earning an absolute pittance. Cheap furniture equals child labour: a good reason to buy British.

Flatpacking the furniture also keeps the price down – it all allows for more economical logistics both from manufacturer to retailer, then from retailer to consumer. Ergo, it’s down to the consumer to put it together; loose dowells, missing screws (or the extra one at the end which causes panic over the one that you forgot) and maybe even divorce, flatpack furniture is by no means a happy experience.

I’m sure you think that the point of this blog post is me telling you to buy expensive furniture. It’s really not. The advice here is to find British made, sustainable goods that can be delivered to your door fully assembled if possible. And this doesn’t always have to be an expensive option. Just well made, good value and environmentally guilt free.

IronFire. Affordable, aspirational and non-divorce causing.

How to Buy a Dining Table

Industrial Dining Table

A dining table can be the heart of the home; a place to gather to eat, drink and play games with family and friends whether lively and loud or reserved and polite. (No prizes for guessing which of these my get-togethers resemble!).

Varying in size and shape, purchasing a dining table for these spaces can be quite an arduous decision which requires a lot of research and discussion, not to mention the fact that very rarely are dining tables an impulse buy simply due to the cost of purchasing one that is not what we call “fast furniture” (blog here).

Dining Table Buying Guide

Bearing this in mind, we have put together some ideas to help you choose the right table for you, to make sure that you spend your money wisely on a piece of furniture that will serve you well for years to come….

  • For longevity, try to stay away from thick veneer and aim for real wood. Veneer will lift up over time and move away from the table, and a good ways of telling if the table is made of veneer is if visible seams can be seen. Real wood is always a better option, both for aesthetics and longevity.
  • Measure your room well – this may seem obvious but you need to take into account if the table will be living in the kitchen, dining or living room; if it is going to be in the way of general everyday traffic and therefore needs to be pushed against a wall, or if it will be permanent and therefore needs enough room to be able to negotiate around. As a general rule, if you leave around 50 inches of space between the back of the chairs and the wall, you should be ok!
  • Don’t discount outdoor materials – these can look rustic, be hardwearing as well as being fire and UV resistant. Maybe draw the line at a plastic picnic table though, unless your guests are really messy eaters!
  • It’s not likely that you’ll be in a position to be updating your dining table as often as other easily interchangeable interior pieces in your home, so see it as a key piece and try to spend as much as you are able on it with the view that it is a long term investment.
  • Do you have children? Lots of parties or events? Look at getting a glass protective top to give you even more life and usage out of it, which also saves you having to cover it with a tablecloth for protection.
  • Don’t be constrained by chairs – why stick to 8 of the same matching chairs when there are so many opportunities to change it up. Use a combination of different chairs with a variety of backs, colours, materials and arms, or even use a bench or two which can be super practical if you need to push these away to create more space, or fit more little bottoms onto!
  • Colour is a great way of injecting life into your living space, but bear in mind that trends change quickly. Use a classic colour such as red or green if you are sure you want colour, or just stick to a classic wood. Black however is a colour that never really goes out of fashion and will complement everything.
  • How many people do you need to allow for? As a rule, people will comfortably need 60cm each, or 70cm if the chairs have arms. Use this measurement to make sure you can fit everyone that you want around your table.
  • Dining Tables are large products. When you have decided on one, make sure that a home delivery option is available, as well as checking if you have to assemble the table yourself or this is also a service that the retailer offers.

There are lots of options out there, and whether you are looking for a table that works in your dining room as well as your garden, a unique industrial table that fits into a modern interior or a rustic hardwearing table for a kitchen, you certainly are spoilt for choice!

Small Living Room Ideas

red dining table

We can all do with some small living room ideas as most of us don’t have Downton Abbey size rooms.

Small living room furniture ideas

There sofas, side tables and rugs are placed around a room with care given to where antiques are going to be put or if one’s butler can navigate around them. In the real world cosy small living areas are of course more common than larger ones and so small living room layouts need to be optimised to prevent overcrowding and furniture claustrophobia. Space can however be filled cleverly, meaning that a room can feel airy and open even if your living room space is at a premium.

It just takes a few clever ideas and arranging to make a perfect small living room layout.

How to arrange furniture in a small living room?

  1. De-clutter! My general rule of thumb for small space living is that if it hasn’t been used in the past year, it’s probably not going to be used again (unless it’s the Christmas Decs still part of the living room interior design in April). Chucking away an treasured dust gatherer is a great way of not only making the area seem bigger, but also gives you less to clean. (whilst implementing your new small room ideas it’s always worth checking before you throw away random stuff that turns out to a stone picked up on that first date, “but obviously means nothing to you”
  2. Use a colour palette that is light and neutral. Not necessarily Magnolia all the way, but going light on the colours like mushrooms, taupes and light egg blues. On the other hand other Hadley Mendolsohn over at House Beautiful says the opposite and to go for a darker colour though. https://www.housebeautiful.com/room-decorating/living-family-rooms/g2310/small-living-room-decorating-ideas/
  3. Include mirrors in your wall decor – this will increase the natural light in your room and make it look more spacious (as well as being a basic for the vain). Gallery walls of mirrors look fantastic, help you cheat at cards and work really well as small living room decorating ideas.
  4. Move furniture away from the walls to create a feeling of space, and try to get furniture with legs which also helps. Any furniture that’s multi-purpose, such as an Ironfire coffee table that can be used for storage also) will help save space for that all important lego project.
  5. Be clever with your shelving – leave space on them (easy after your declutter as in point number 1), group the same coloured items together on them, and have the shelving high on the wall. All of these will help make your room feel more spacious. And can keep your copy of Fifty Shades of Grey away from curious children. Here’s a link to the flexible Ironfire shelving range
  6. Colour pop your ceiling – this is a bit of a brave one, and one that I have seen on a house viewing that actually had a studded ceiling – but painting the ceiling a darker colour than the walls can elongate the room, again increasing the feeling of being larger than it is.
  7. Leave your windows bare of curtains, or get them to match the walls. I have blinds up at my living room windows and don’t miss curtains at all, even preferring the more naked modern look. We have a small console table placed in the gap between our two windows which works well too.
  8. If you need a Table in the room? Consider a bistro or cafe table that has a central pedestal not four legs. They are much more efficient for seating people and can be pushed against a wall. Ironfire make them in a huge range of colours in different sizes.

And if all of these really don’t help, just go unconventional – who said you need sofas in a small living room anyway?

There’s lots of advice around, we’ve put some links to our Ironfire Industrial feel furniture and here’s some others who share or have other small space living ideas!

Small living room ideas – 45 top tips and clever design tricks

https://www.houzz.co.uk/photos/small-living-room-ideas-and-designs-phbr1-bp~t_10272~a_30-231

Good luck with your project!

Autumn Interior Trends 2022

Industrial Style Bistro Table

Now Summer has departed (we know, we missed it happening too!), evenings are getting darker and colder and more time will inevitably be spent inside the home. Craving the comfort and calm that your home can bring after feeling like Summer has been non-stop and hectic, Autumn is a great time to reset your home before Winter really comes in.

Autumn Interior Trends

With log-burners starting to be ignited and throws actually being used in the evenings rather than just being sofa decoration, there are some warmth inspiring trends for interiors coming in that will make your home become a hibernation hidey-hole that may just put the end to your social life for the rest of 2022….

Statement Lighting

Lighting is a great tool to create ambience and effects in your home. Whether just relying on side lamps, or going for the main central event, lighting can create moods of romance or give a real wow-factor.

IronFire Industrial pendant lighting is great for this – used singly in the centre of the room or in groups of mixed or matched sizes, the hanging pendants look great and are guaranteed to be a talking point. The warmth of the yellow interior (other colours are available) also brings warmth and sunshine into a room when it can be seriously lacking due to the time of year.

 

Industrial Style Pendant Lighting
IronFire industrial lighting can add a real statement to your living area.

Keep it Natural

There is a huge focus on natural materials at the moment, with pared back oaks and wooden finishes matched alongside metal creating a juxtaposition between soft organic and harsher minerals. Here I come again with another shameless plug…all IronFire industrial furniture (links here to our dining table, coffee table, bistro table and console table) uses sustainably sourced Douglas fir which can be given a shou sugi-ban effect for a bolder look, or naturally finished oak for a pared back classic interior. All have galvanised steel frames, making them perfect for this trend; but also one that will carry on timelessly. As Sophia Ridley, head of design at Debenhams says: “The modern rustic trend is set to be huge for the cooler months”.

 

Industrial Coffee Table Image
Sustainably sourced Douglas fir and oak, paired with industrial style galvanised steel means that our tables match this trend perfectly.

Bringing Nature In

And by this, we don’t mean hibernating hedgehogs, but embracing the outside in the warmth of your home with nature-based accessories and soft furnishings made out of natural materials.

 

Nature inside
Garden Picture Frame by London Garden Trading, £29.95
ironfire 2020 interior trends
Kew Garden Cushion by Jim Lawrence, £25
2020 interior trends
Village Green Wool Throw by Tolly McRae, £69
ironfire Autumn 2020 Interior Trends
Rug made of jute and cotton by The Rugs Warehouse, from £57

Pantone Fusion Colours

Looking to make more of an Autumn interior change over and above accessories? According to London Fashion Week, these are the colours that will be making a statement for Autumn and Winter 2012.

ironfire colours
London Fashion Week Colour Report for Autumn/Winter 2022

How are you preparing your interior for Autumn? Share your ideas and images with us on our Facebook page or send them to kelly@iron-fire.co.uk

 

Why Industrial Furniture?

Industrial ironfire

Industrial style furniture has risen in popularity over recent years, with the trend for reclaimed materials and the New York loft apartment look really taking off. Whether a rural country home, modern apartment or commercial office, the look can be adaptable and fit in to any environment which explains its appeal.

Predominantly, the look will encompass hard wearing steel and wood that has been completed to a hard wearing but almost rustic finish that looks like it will withstand pressure and a lot of use! The look could be described as more masculine than feminine, however this can create a great contrast within a home by styling in a more softer way. Read our blog post on styling an IronFire coffee table here – where we took it on a trip to an amazing local interior shop to show how versatile the industrial look really can be.

While it’s original home was in factories and warehouses, the functional yet diverse look of this type of furniture can make it’s home almost anywhere. Purpose built and designed, our furniture can retain that warehouse look while being more suited to use than reclaimed and restyled furniture.

IronFire uses a fusion of strong galavanised steel for the frame of our tables, topped with sustainable Douglas fir wood which we either paint, or finish with a technique that combines our own handcrafting with the ancient Japanese process of burning wood also known as Shou Sugi-Ban.

Aspirational, adaptable and industrial; but also happy to be in any environment. That’s how to be more IronFire.