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Behind The Brand — John-Richard | Shop John-Richard at

Behind The Brand: John-Richard

Jonathon Warren
By Jonathon Warren, Commercial Director

In a design epoch where modernity overrules tradition and casualness is preferred over the refined, it’s a rare brand that embraces decoration, beauty and formality—three words by which US brand John-Richard can be defined.

The transitional furniture, decor and lighting specialist has an MO of refined sophistication with a subtle glamour. And, although subtle in its approach, John-Richard’s intention is clear—reimagine the quintessential elegance of years past.

Reclaiming Beauty

The brand champions beauty in the true sense of the word; not the modern version of beauty we’ve learned to love, like a immaculately designed Zaha Hadid structure or that of a perfectly proportioned Mid-century modern chair, as beautiful as they are.

Cabinetry adorned with gold cerusing, Chinoiserie-inspired églomisé mirrors, hotel-worthy faux botanical arrangements, delicate ceramics with organic silhouettes, feminine powder room upholstery… And, punctuating the entire collection, a heavy dose of brass, gold and silver, proving that there isn’t anything a well-chosen metallic can’t make just that little more glamorous.

Behind The Brand—John-Richard | Shop Luxury Decor at

Image Credit: John-Richard

The brand adds beauty wherever it can—channelling old-world glamour and looking to revisit the Aesthetic movement’s ideology of “beauty for beauty’s sake”, though graciously and with consideration.

In its world, a lamp isn’t just a lamp—it’s also a sculpture—and a sideboard isn’t just a sideboard—it’s also a canvas. Pieces are designed to transcend the mundane and offer more than meets the eye, contrasting the starkness of bare-walled, less-is-best minimalism.

That’s not to say that restraint isn’t used—after all, there is a classical beauty to be found in simplicity.

The John-Richard collection proves that by balancing its decorative elements with simpler ones, offering plenty of sustenance for the modernist. The modernist who still appreciates the nuances of beauty that is.

A glance at the collection’s contemporary-leaning pieces reveals uncomplicated lines and materials du jour which do a stellar job of reworking old classics.

Pedestal side tables with slender proportions are formed from solid marble; hazy abstract canvases are rendered in modern dusky blues and charcoals; modern-but-still-classic rough-cut selenite wall sconces evoke thoughts of Hausmannian hallways; and faceless Giacommetti-esque statues are beautifully sculpted by local artisans. These maintain the collection’s style equilibrium.

Behind The Brand—John-Richard | Shop Luxury Decor at

Telling The Story

“We provide the details. You tell the story.” The John-Richard mantra is empowering to the design enthusiast. Who doesn’t want the chance to tell their own story? To create a story that is completely them?

The story of the brand itself began in the Mississippi Delta region of the United States (where it is still headquartered) back in 1980. Though originally a sideline business for a large retail furniture brand with a small team of five, the sideline didn’t last for long.

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Image Credit: John-Richard

The brand’s sophisticated offering guaranteed its future as an international furniture brand with locations in Vietnam, Indonesia, India, and China and a showroom for trade clientele in High Point, North Carolina.

To John-Richard, story is important and it’s not only the personal design stories told by those who buy its pieces that the brand wants to nurture. It tells the stories of history, fascinating cultures, beautiful exotic materials and people from around the world. Sometimes, it’s even these people—the very ones who inspire the designs themselves—that the brand commissions to create them.

Of John-Richard’s craftsmanship, it could be said that artisanal quality is the paramount goal with many of the manufacturing processes still done by hand, including antiquing, glass and églomisé work and gold and silver leafing.

The worker’s hand is seen in the brand’s designs with some pieces literally bearing the mark of the artist. Many of the collection’s sideboards are clad in hand-painted rice paper artwork or hand-painted faux marble.

Whether furniture, decor or lighting, there’s a focus on the one-of-a-kind—the notion of the unique threading its way through the collections effortlessly. 

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Image Credit: John-Richard

And when it’s not a craftsman’s hand being featured, it’s Mother Nature’s. Dressers are finished off with agate drawer pulls, table lamp bases are carefully honed from stone and the decor collection’s references to nature—from flying bird sculptures to branch-like chandeliers—are innumerable.

The brand’s decorative finishes and textures, for which it is renowned, also take inspiration from nature. Stone is recharacterised as a luxe material in the John-Richard collection, starburst patterns mimic a mother of pearl aesthetic and cast metal takes on the appearance of rustic wood grain.

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Image Credit: John-Richard

Cultured inspirations, skilled craftsmanship, a patron of all things beautiful—these marks of quality, individually, would be enough. But John-Richard does one better, adding all three to the mix.

So, yes, a brand like John-Richard—an artisan-led purveyor of beauty—may be a rare thing. And its penchant for elegant style might become increasingly rare as the days of fine interiors and formality become further from our view. But as this brand knows, when it comes to beauty, a rare thing is always good.