Based in Toronto, 2K1M is an up-and-coming luxury brand that creates stunning furniture pieces for the home. Every design element has been carefully designed and engineered by Naji Mourani, who brings his many years of expertise in Interior Design to products. With a creative recipe of exotic wood grains, rich marble surfaces, and extraordinary Italian craftmanship, 2K1M's designs will definitively won't go ignored when entering a room. Naji gave us a window into his creative process and the vision for his brand.
Were you always a designer, tell us about your professional experience?
I have an Interior Design and Interior Architecture Background with a great passion for Product and Furniture design and manufacturing. I have been in the industry for over 25 years and have worked Internationally on many hospitalities and residential projects.
What goes behind the inspiration of your products and collections?
As a designer, I get inspired by the moment, the strokes of my pencil and everything else follows. I find it hard to look at things for inspiration. Maybe unconsciously, I get inspired, I don't know. Often, I start sketching my next project on paper and finalize the details in my thoughts while lying down. I like my work to be 100% me without any external influence.
How has the brand evolved from where you started?
It has evolved slower than we have hoped for due to COVID. The lockdown, travel restrictions made it extremely hard and pretty limited to be out here, networking and connecting with our partners, with the industry and to promote and push things forward. With all these restrictions, we managed to develop a new accessories collection that will launch towards the end of the summer, and by the fall, we will be promoting a new Furniture Collection. Overall, considering the current circumstances, COVID and new Brand, the demand and the interests in our products were positive and promising.
What is the vision for your brand in the next years to come? What new products are you working on?
We are looking forward to 2022 being part of the international scene. We are eyeing a couple of events/opportunities in Milan and Dubai.
The two products I mentioned earlier are the Sagoma, our First Home Décor accessory product and Camouflage. We also have two other Home Décor Items we are working on to start promoting later this year.
What’s the inspiration behind the name of the brand?
2K1M refers to my two little ones, whom I adore and ask for feedback and criticism. It is interesting to hear their perspective and analysis. The "2K" stands for their first names "Kaiya & Kenzo" and the "1M" stands for our last name "Mourani".
What does the creative process look like?
The process always starts with a bang, an idea, spark or a vision if you wish. From sketches to digital drafting and detailing. Finish sourcing and selection to 3D generation. Then shop drawings development for pricing and feasibility and the Mock-up production is the final stage where we can touch and feel, tweak and finalize the finishes. A process that can easily take 1 to 1.5 years depends on the products and their complexity.
Where does your passion for Carrara marble come from?
I love Carrara, and it is a material that has been around for thousands of years and still stands, telling us how our ancestors lived and built their temples, cities and palaces. I also admire any Marble or material that ages and will tell you a story by looking at it - materials such as solid wood and leather.
You chose to work with Italian manufacturers, why is this?
For many reasons, the main two: Love of the culture and its history. Second, the quality and the craftsmanship.
What does a typical workday look like?
I am involved in all the aspect of the work. One day I can be immersed in the creative part, another in Marketing, Business development, etc. But there's one common thing: my days are extraordinarily packed and busy, includng the weekends and evenings.
What is your favorite part of the process?
The creative Part and then the Mock-up production where you get to see your design is coming to life.
Tell us about a special technique you use for your products.
No specific Technique, but most components of each furniture piece are hand-made by Artisans and Crafts People. I love encouraging this approach, and we should all make sure it will not vanish with time
What has been your most memorable experience with a customer?
The most memorable experiences are working with customers who appreciate the product, the design, the talent, and the hard work behind creating these unique pieces. These are customers that provide us with valuable and genuine feedback and push us to deliver more.
What are the unique functionalities in your products customers should know about?
They are showpieces with function. Ageless and made to order with some opportunities to customize their finishes.
What is the inspiration behind the Grooves Collection and the Fai Collection?
The "Grooves" inspiration is to create a modern and minimalistic look but maintains that uniqueness which makes them stand out from other products that you might see out there in the market.
The "Fai" inspiration is to create an ageless high-end contemporary Art Deco collection with a twist for the Hospitality and Residential Market.
What or who has been of significant influence on your work as a whole?
Hard to tell since I follow my instinct, my drive and my passion for design. But from what I see and from what I have created so far, it seems that indirectly I am influenced by the '70s and probably what I have seen growing up at my grandparent's house, old black and white photos of my parents growing up. My education for the History of Arts 1800s & 1900s. The Roman and Greek eras. The attention to detail, use of natural materials, quality and durability.
Last, please share what you like the most about being part of our community.
It is a place for unique products. A place where designers can connect with their peers. A place to admire other products and for your products to be enjoyed in return.
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