March 21, 2017

Tzelan's Serene and Chic Concept for DIFFA's Dining by Design

New York-based global lifestyle brand Tzelan partners with Steelite and Materials Inc to present 'Reflections' for DIFFA's 20th annual Dining by Design!

by New York Spaces photographer Alan Barry

PHotography by Alan Barry, Tzelan
Tzelan
Diffa's dining by design, tzelan
DIFFA's Dining by Design; Photo courtesy of Tzelan.

NYS: How did your partnership with Steelite and Materials Inc. for DIFFA's Dining by Design come about?

Alison Chi of Tzelan: Our heritage is deeply rooted in the Interior Design industry. Our mission when starting tzelan, was to create a beautiful lifestyle brand that pays homage to hospitality and its beloved industry. And both Steelite and Materials Inc., are leading suppliers in the hospitality/commercial sector.

NYS: How did Tzelan and Steelite and Materials Inc. fit together perfectly to create a dining installation? What are each known for?

Alison Chi: Tzelan designed the PATINA metal panel collection to decorate interior walls and ceilings and produced them with artisans in Argentina. We recently partnered with Materials Inc. as our exclusive distributor nationwide.

DIffas dining by design, tzelan
DIFFA's Dining by Design; Photo courtesy of Tzelan.

Materials Inc.: We are a wholesale distributor of high quality wood veneers, wood surfaces, decorative panels, floors, doors, and other specialty architectural product that services the construction industry throughout North America. We offer quality materials, both sustainable and exotic, ranging from veneers and wall panels to flooring, doors, & specialty products. Since our start in 2000, we have built a well-respected brand and reputation in the Architectural and Interior Design community, based on one of our paramount objectives. We strive to provide innovative products and an impeccable level of service to ensure we are supporting & encouraging the newest ideas & concepts in the industry. Through our diverse approach & collaborating with iconic brands, Materials Inc. will continue to provide our community with products that allow them to express their unique voices in our highly creative environment.

DIFFA's Dining by Design; Photo courtesy of Tzelan.
DIFFA's Dining by Design; Photo courtesy of Tzelan.

Tzelan is launching a tabletop line in collaboration with some of our artists and partnering with Steelite as our manufacturing and distribution partner. Will launch officially at this years NRA show in Chicago.

Steelite International: We are a world leading manufacturer of tableware products designed and developed specifically for the hospitality market. Our core brands, 'Distinction' and 'Performance' are complemented by specialist partner collections including La Tavola, Bormioli Rocco, Pillivuyt, Rene Ozorio, Laguiole, Trudeau, Anfora, Crucial Detail, Rona, Roselli Design, Drinique, Delphin, Cortland Silvermsiths, Modern Mixologist and Worthy, Noble & Kent. Steelite's product portfolio remains at the leading edge of foodservice presentation.

NYS: Tell us about your table design. What was the concept behind it and why was it called "Reflections?"

Tzelan: The booth, titled Reflections, celebrates the subtle harmony of the Natural World Order, a welcome realignment and restoration of the five prevailing elements that are found in ancient Chinese philosophy and believed to comprise all things: wood, fire, earth, metal and water. At the installation's heart, rests a purposefully set dining table, inviting family, friends and associates of all backgrounds, orientations and beliefs to come together to weave a strong, vibrant and textured tapestry. "The heritage of hospitality is rooted in culture, religion, cuisine and occasion, whether passed down or new. Rituals and traditions unite us, despite our perceived

DIFFA's Dining by Design; Photo courtesy of Tzelan.
DIFFA's Dining by Design; Photo courtesy of Tzelan.

differences," says Alison Chi, Tzelan's Managing Director. "It's through hospitality's warm embrace that we discovered the generosity of the human spirit, and a return to the sagacious wisdom of nature and the understanding my own cultural heritage that we found a profound sense of comfort and respite." reflections combines myriad materials highlighting nature and its interaction with the human hand. Handstitched leather tablecloth alongside hand-hammered "Alpaca" panels distributed by Materials Inc., while elegant, sophisticated tableware partnership with Steelite International sits atop custom, hand-woven metal tablecloths made by French artisans. Tzelan's own Kia plates, made in collaboration with artist Kia Pedersen, captures moments from one of her recent works depicting the movement of waves at sea.

NYS: As a global lifestyle brand, what designs and products did you incorporate into the booth to convey the idea of harmony in the world?

DIFFA's Dining by Design; Photo courtesy of Tzelan.
DIFFA's Dining by Design; Photo courtesy of Tzelan.

Alison Chi: Handstitched leather tablecloth alongside hand-hammered "Alpaca" nickel panels distributed by Materials Inc., while elegant, sophisticated tableware partnership with Steelite International sits atop custom, hand-woven metal tablecloths made by French artisans. Tzelan's own Kia plates, made in collaboration with artist Kia Pedersen, captures moments from one of her recent works depicting the movement of waves at sea. Ongo lamp designed by Jessica Corr for tzelan by Contardi lights up the hand-woven metal mesh placemat and chairs are original tzelan design called Edwardian Flair.

NYS: We love the idea of showcasing the heritage of hospitality! How did you prominently display this idea through design?

Alison Chi: We collaborated with eh oui and their French artisans to weave a single placemat for the table to represent a strong, vibrant and textured tapestry that connects a diverse range of human energies to the table. We had selected different energy crystals to anchor each table setting to represent the variety of energies around the world we live in. Hospitality is an attitude and choice in how we treat and welcome one another.

NYS: Why do you think rituals and traditions are important to acknowledge?

DIFFA's Dining by Design; Photo courtesy of Tzelan.
DIFFA's Dining by Design; Photo courtesy of Tzelan.

Alison Chi: Culture is built on a commitment to the everyday. Rituals and traditions have always been rooted in regional culture and are passed down by families. In celebrating the global world that we live in today, tzelan instills meaning in each of its designs through collaboration and branding small expressions in a tangible way.

NYS: We love the "alpaca" panels and the Kia plates you incorporated into the installation. What drew you to using these?

Alison Chi: The 'alpaca' or nickel panels are part of the PATINA collection that we are proud to announce partnership with Materials Inc. in distributing to the hospitality, residential and commercial markets.

NYS: What were some of your favorite aspects of the table design?

Alison Chi: I really enjoyed how interactive and engaging our installation was. Our designs are sophisticated and subtle, and I really enjoyed watching how people would peeled back the layers and discover the details of the table design.

NYS: What was one of your most incredible moments working on DIFFA's Dining by Design? Would you do it again?

Alison Chi: It was spectacular to be apart of such a creative community and for a truly great cause. It was great to witness how the industry unites together through the power of design. If given the opportunity again, we would be honored to collaborate.

Tzelan Dining by Design Diffa
DIFFA's Dining by Design; Photo courtesy of Tzelan.

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