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Original Designs by Hille Furniture

20th-century pioneers of modern design, the Hille Furniture company, started in London's East End in a small workshop. Rosamund Julius and her husband Leslie helped introduce post-war Britain to modernism.

Working for the family business, Rosamund drove the company to become one of the country's leading manufacturers of original modern designs.

Founder Salamon, a refugee from Russia, initially ran the workshop as a hobby. With the help from his wife and daughter Ray, he quickly turned it into a full-time business. He established a reputation with the elite in north London and retail stores Heals and Maples for producing high-quality reproduction furniture.

During the '50s, their designs weren't exactly met with enthusiasm from most traditional retailers. Still, unperturbed Rosamund was determined to find a solution and decided to sell directly to architects and designers.

Forming collaborations with Robin Day, the world's first polypropylene chair was launched from Rosamind's Mayfair showroom and proved to become the most significant development in British mass-produced design since the end of the war.

Furnish your home with the hand-picked bespoke collection of our 20th-century furniture Hille chairs and other iconic Hille Furniture pieces.

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About HilleWithout realising it, you've probably perched on a piece from Hille furniture.

Remember those stackable school seats, the polypropylene chair? These Hille chairs are one of the UK's renowned design classics.

Running an inspired marketing campaign revolutionary at the time, they sent out over 600 units to prominent architects, designers, and government buyers. The Polyprop chairs resulted in the sale of millions, and the design is now ubiquitous in offices around the globe.

The Hille furniture company, founded by Salamon Hille, a Russian emigre in London's East End in 1906, started the company to renovate and reproduce 18th century furniture. Historically the business had created reproduction antiques, and during the war, they repaired antique furniture for the Victoria and Albert Museum.

From the get-go, the company's emphasis was quality is more important than quantity. So he ran a craft apprenticeship hiring only skilled artisans who belonged to the trade union to fit the bill. Salamon instantly built a name for himself; his customers were mainly Jewish. Still, maintaining his high prices, it was those living in North London and major department stores such as the Hampton's and Maples who snapped up his designs.

His daughter Ray soon joined him along with her husband and their daughters, Cheryl, Rosamund, and Leslie Julius. The business was transformed when Salomon's granddaughter Rosamund Julius met two award-winning British designers in America in 1949, Robin Day and Clive Latimer. When Hille discovered British furniture designer Robin Day at the International Competition for Low-Cost Furniture at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, he was experimenting with pre-formed technology for furniture, such as by-products from the aircraft industry.

Day joined the company with the belief that Hille was the only brand that truly understood Day's experiments and style. Together the company changed direction, and the new furniture was designed not for retail but by specifications from architects and large projects.

Day created an extensive range of designs for Hille, from the iconic stacking chairs and tables to easy chairs, sofas, sideboards, and cabinets. The successful partnership saw the company set up showrooms in Mayfair where they could show their furniture and host interior designers and architects.

Hille has always had design excellence at the forefront of each design, and they have worked with some of the most innovative designers the UK has ever produced.

Browse their well-known and undiscovered classic and original designs here.


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