NINE Outdoor Takeover

Emerging European brand, NINE, launch an exclusive outdoor installation at the twentytwentyone showroom, featuring works by Note Design Studio and the Butterfield Brothers. On display until 27th April 2024.

NINE Outdoor Takeover


Last week, we were delighted to host Johannes Karlström and Malin Engvall of Note Design Studio and Tom Butterfield of the Butterfield Brothers in conversation with Katherine Hoeger from NINE.

To mark the UK launch of the Sine collection, NINE and twentytwentyone collaborated with an outdoor takeover installation at the courtyard space of our River Street showroom. The design studios shared insight into the design, their approach, and the development of both the Sine and 19 Outdoors collections.



SINE by Stockholm-based collective Note Design Studio is a contemporary collection that takes its name from the fluid curves of the mathematical 'Sine' wave, echoed by its gentle arcs and the continuous line of its frame. Crafted from powder-coated stainless steel, the robust design exudes a visual softness.

Taking cues from classic Swedish outdoor furniture, the seating features a cantilevered frame, providing a slight bounce to enhance comfort. Available in a fresh colour palette that seamlessly integrates with natural and urban environments, the extensive collection comprises dining and lounge chairs, stools, benches, ottomans and tables.

Here are a few excerpts from the discussion between Johannes Karlström and Malin Engvall on SINE:

Katherine Hoeger: "How did your design journey start for this outdoor project?"

Malin Engvall: “The main thing we wanted to do was create a comfortable collection of chairs. We looked back at Swedish history in Swedish traditional gardens and houses. There's this wooden (and steel) cantilever chair that is almost everywhere. It's a really old classic. We had that in the back of our minds when we thought about a really comfortable chair. But then we felt like it hadn't been done really, the cantilever hadn't been used in a nice, modern way recently.”

Johannes Karlström: “The cantilever is not commonly used for outdoor (furniture). We don't understand why because it offers a high degree of comfort, with quite minimal use of material.”

ME: “Metal is obviously very hard and can be a bit of a cold material, but we wanted to soften it up. We wanted the sheets to be almost like leather. That's why they're thin and folded around the soft, one-line frame.” 

ME: “A dining chair is often approached from behind because it's almost always together with a table. We really liked how this curvature turned out when you put several next to each other. Also, outdoors, there will be a shadow effect when the sun hits the collection, that was something that we liked.”

JE: “It's not an easy task, an outdoor collection. The materials need to be sturdy, it needs to be durable. And it was also part of the brief that we got from Nine, the longevity of things. These are stainless steel but its powder coated. So, even if you scratch it, you lose a little bit of the paint, but it won't rust. It secures it for a long time, perhaps decades.” 

JE: "As a studio, I don't know if you know us, but we are known for mainly a minimalist approach but with colour - bringing some power into this minimalism. The dark green sometimes looks a bit brown and sometimes black, but it has depth - it changes with the type of light it is in. That makes it fit both in an urban environment and also in a more rural context. The grey looks good there on the pavement, where we can really see it. And the yellow is quite energetic. It's not a sunny yellow, but it's cooler, a bit sharper - I would buy these!"


19 Outdoors 

The 19 Outdoors Collection by the Butterfield Brothers began life as a lockdown project. 19 Chairs saw brothers Tom and Will craft 19 different chair designs in 19 days, working only with square-section timber and screws. The project culminated in the unique customisation of the designs by a host of creatives, which were auctioned to raise money for Age UK.

Launching towards the end of 2023, 19 Outdoors is a graphic collection of seating and tables developed from the aforementioned project. Working with Nine, the designs were refined and translated into sleek powder-coated aluminium, available in a contemporary colour palette


Tom Butterfield on 19 Outdoors 

KH: "Tom, the photos behind are quite different from the 19 Outdoors pieces on the platform, can you give a bit of background on that?"

Tom Butterfield: “The images on display are from our charity lockdown project titled 19 Chairs, where we designed and built a chair a day for 19 days of lockdown. Once complete, we had all these chairs lying around the house, driving our mother mad. So, we reached out to 19 different creatives from all over the world, from different disciplines. Set designers, fashion designers, illustrators, photographers, architects and even a comedian! We asked if we could send them a chair and set them a brief, which was to – reinvent, reimagine or redesign your chair with an older person in mind. We then waited, and they slowly started arriving back home looking completely different.”  

TB: “We then hosted an exhibition in London in 2021, where we auctioned all the pieces and donated all profits made. It was just over £10,000, which we gave to Age UK to help the elderly through lockdown.”

TB: “It was a project that completely snowballed. When we started to build the chairs, it was never the plan to create such a great project - to collaborate with NINE or to design an outdoor collection. It was through the power of social media which gave us the exposure and outreach, which was then found by the team at Nine United. Katie, in particular, thought that there were a couple of the chairs that could be commercial and challenged us to design a commercial outdoor collection based upon the original chairs.”

TB: ”We tried to incorporate as much of the original chair frameworks within the current collection. For example, the stacking chairs are very similar to the chair we gave Jean Jullien, which was Chair 11, and the dining chairs are very similar to Sabine Marcelis’ Chair 10. The lounge chairs are a combination of Chairs 8 and 15 mixed together, and the dining bench takes references from Chair 7. The idea is that they all look a bit different from each other, but they stay unified by their material and colour." 

TB: “We always wanted a very clean silhouette which was the main reason for choosing aluminium - it's really crisp and graphic.”


We thank everyone who took time out to attend the designer's lunch and extend our sincere thanks to Johannes Karlström, Malin Engvall, Tom Butterfield and Katherine Hoeger.

The NINE x twentytwentyone Outdoor Takeover installation remains on display at our showroom, 18c River Street, EC1R 1XN, until the 27th April, Monday-Saturday, 9:30am – 5:30pm.


Banner image © George Kroustallis

Images © Nine + twentytwentyone

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