When Ciel Loft and Home first opened five years ago on Excelsior Boulevard, it developed a following for its one-of-a-kind furniture designs made from reclaimed wood from China and custom metal bases. Now, shoppers can build their own tables from the table base and top of their choice with a few clicks of a button with the debut of Pikka Designs Co., Ciel’s new customizable, in-house artisan crafted furniture brand.
Ciel co-owner Andy Higgins likens Pikka to having the same assurance of quality as big-box home stores, but with a more authentic product. He says that the concept came from customers’ requests to switch tabletops with bases on the store’s selection of in-house designs. “I was like, we should just be making these universal,” he says.
Pikka—the name comes from the phrase “pick a,” as in “pick a top” or “pick a base,” with a slightly Scandinavian twist—launches this month with about 20 dining tabletop styles and 10 different bases that can work with any of the tops. Initially, the line is available only in store, but Higgins says the brand will be positioned primarily as an e-commerce concept when its website launches at the end of the month. (Local shoppers interested in seeing the collection in person will still be able to check out the furniture at their brick-and-mortar location following the online launch.)
“One of the barriers of Ciel having a great web presence has been our really wide and diverse product offering of one-of-a-kind goods,” says Higgins. “Ciel really is a look and thus we are pretty product-flexible, but online you cannot be as flexible since you need to keep that same product shipping over a long period of time. So Pikka is like the shippable version of Ciel.”
The tabletops are available in sizes ranging from five to 10 feet long and come in five different finishes. Higgins’ business partner, Chad Newman, who is based in western China, collects wood for the tables in Chinese villages, such as elm wood from old doors and pine from beams and pillars. The duo fabricates metal bases for their tables in China with their own designs. Following the initial launch, Higgins says they will expand with a mix-and-match line of benches, coffee tables, and side tables.
Eventually, Higgins sees Pikka evolving into a more edited version of Etsy for a defined group of furniture designers and makers. But for now, Pikka offers a great way to own an artisan table that comes with your own personal touch.