Necessity may be the mother of invention, but creativity definitely improves these inventions, making them more attractive, more technologically advanced and all in all, better performing. When a company comes along that has the enthusiasm, foresight, skills and talents needed to do all these, the modern world is made better. Umbra, a 30-year-old company, has consistently reinvented basic home and office products into aesthetically-pleasing pieces that invoke both contemporary style and classic elegance.
Umbra was the genius of Paul Rowan, a graphic designer who was frustrated at the lack of suitable window shades for his apartment. Rowan decided to create his own shades, which gained the notice of other people. In a partnership with Les Mandelbaum, Umbra was established – the name being the Latin for “shade”. In its years of designing and manufacturing products for the home, the company has worked with some of the world’s most brilliant and most creative designers to come up with never-before-seen designs. Umbra’s range of modern clocks alone are enough to prove just how dedicated the company is to quality manufacturing and excellent design, not to mention the other products they have available.
Umbra started out with the window shade, then went on to create products that have become icons, such as the mult-frame, the garbino bin, the oh chair, the crunch can, the conceal shelf, the balloona and the wallflower – all imaginative spins on humble items like a chair, picture frame, garbage basket or book shelf. Umbra sells wall sayings, wall décor and mirrors, drapery, hooks and organization, bath and kitchen items, clocks, photo displays and albums, jewelry, cans, furniture, office and study items, pillows, accessories and games through various specialty retailers and online shops. Its continuous commitment to providing the world with great-looking, highly functional home items dictates that Umbra will have many more years to come in its success.