Future Classic | Extrasoft Sofa

  • Few sofas are as comfortable as Piero Lissoni’s module Extrasoft sofa, conceived for Living Divani.

    It’s unusual to find this type of sofa that fits into so many interiors, from the sleek urban pad to the rustic cottage in a country or beachside setting. However, since this lounge suite was released in 2008, it has been used in a multitude of settings, responding like a chameleon wherever it’s seen.

    Produced in partnership with Space Furniture

    For Piero Lissoni, who was inspired by the low-slung furniture and floor cushions found throughout homes in the Middle East, the Extrasoft Sofa also comes with a touch of the 1970s (think of the wild happenings during this decade). The irregular shaped seating, often referred to as an ‘upholstered landscape’, can be easily arranged to suit any space, be it loosely dividing open plan areas or even for last-minute guests deciding to stay over rather than make the trek back to town. As versatile are the fabric choices, whether in fabric or in leather, that allow the Extrasoft Sofa to appear custom made for a specific room, be this inside or outside on the terrace (covered in durable weather-protected fabrics).

    Architect Tony Vella, director of Rachcoff Vella Architecture, included the Extrasoft sofa in a simple stone cottage at Main Ridge, located on Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula. Built in the early 20th century as a dairy for milking cows, the modest renovation was to serve a couple with four children, and two dogs before a larger home on the property was built. “They’ve come to love this house. It offers a different experience from their city home,” Tony says. Piero Lissoni’s lounge suite can be found in the living room, relatively modest in size, with a fireplace and framed by the building’s original concrete block walls. “We chose the fabric, a silvery grey linen, to complement the concrete block walls and the tongue and groove ceiling,” he adds.

    For Tony, the Extrasoft sofa creates a relaxed ambience in a room such as this one but can also be used in more sophisticated environments. “The great thing about this lounge is the size and the comfort. The family can spend time riding their horses on the property and all enjoy relaxing on it when they return. And of course, the lounge also accommodates the children’s friends should they decide to stay over,” Tony says.

    Piero Lissoni’s Extrasoft sofa also takes centre stage in a renovated warehouse in Redfern, Sydney. This expansive two-storey warehouse (approximately 915 square metres) had many former lives, both as an architect’s office with an attached residence and more recently as an art gallery, the latter where the brick walls were covered in plaster painted white. Reworked by architect Ian Moore for a couple with two children and a dog, the warehouse was sensitively restored while at the same time, transformed into a fine contemporary family abode.

    Central to Ian’s design is the vast open plan kitchen, dining and living area, with an outdoor terrace at one end. “My clients were keen to include their Le Corbusier armchairs, but asked me to look for a lounge that would feel right, both for the size of this space and for their needs, something that was relaxed and informal, like themselves,” says Moore. “A fixed standard sofa is generally between 2.4 and 3 metres in length. That scale would make any lounge feel like it was in a doll’s house,” Ian says, pointing out the 15-metre width through this living area.

    Ian also appreciated the flexibility of Piero Lissoni’s design, being able to configure the module setting to be orientated in three directions: one towards the television set, one portion orientated to the kitchen and the other, without an armrest, simply facing the corridor leading to the bedrooms. “I was delighted when I saw one of the children simply taking a running leap towards the lounge and execute a perfect flip,” says Moore, who also enjoys seeing large numbers of people enjoy the suite. “You can easily fit 15 people comfortably,” Ian says, who like his clients, has a passion for orange. “It’s just one of those colours that always contemporary,” he adds.

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