Crafting furniture is wound deeply in our Nordic roots and tells the story of who we are. It is a craftsmanship perfected by our families over time. We cherish its impact on our heritage and lift it up with pride. Fine furniture is an art passed down from generation to generation with a rich history of trials and tribulations. After all, designing the most comfortable seating in the world did not just happen overnight.
Creating the ultimate comfort experience has taken decades to perfect. Born from necessity and opportunity, Sykkylven is the epicenter of Norway’s furniture manufacturing industry and home to Ekornes for more than 80 years. The town’s magnificent land with breathtaking views and serene natural beauty is where a revolution of Scandinavian design began.
The practice of building fine Norwegian furniture was the outcome of lineage rights in this small farming community. It all started with second sons. These were the sons who would not inherit the family farm and were left with no way to provide for families of their own. The second sons took their position in stride and learned to pave the way for themselves. They were nimble, innovative and extremely creative.
These practical thinkers left the land in the hands of their older brothers. They took the resources they had and went inside to the barns where they started building furniture. They became designers and engineers, played with art and science and over time they mastered the clean, streamlined and functional designs iconic to Norwegian home décor.
To their surprise, they created a shift in their community’s economy. Furniture shops popped up along the fjord where Sykkylven sits turning the farm community into the heart of Norwegian furniture manufacturing. They started a revolution forever changing their coastal town.
Like Sykkylven’s second sons, our founder, Jens Ekornes, combined practical knowledge with functional design to create furniture perfectly engineered for the human body. His innovative thinking created a spiral effect of impressive design and luxurious seating for decades to come.
Today, Ekornes is the largest furniture manufacturer in the Nordic region and continues to produce its products at home in Sykkylven to preserve a history of which we are so proud. We leverage the same practices taught to us by our great grandparents. By pairing the perfected processes of generations ago with modern enhancements and technological advancements, we continue to create a product of luxury, quality and class.
At the end of the day we hang our hats on knowing we are part of a tradition of transforming the way we relax. The designs, the craftsmanship and the attention to detail has evolved and grown to become the most comfortable seating in the world. From our house to yours, we bring you a perfected piece of history.
At Ekornes, being green is much more than a claim we can make. It’s a way of life stretching far beyond a cause we advocate, because respecting the environment means valuing our heritage and preserving our culture as Norwegians.
The beautiful land we are so lucky to call home paints a picture of the hard work and story of those who came centuries before us. Our historic connection to the land and sea gives us all more reason to preserve the crystal clear waters of the fjords our ancestors sailed and maintain the majestic beauty of the mountains and land our families have built their lives around. Without this regal terrain, we would not be who we are.
Preserving the environment not only protects our past, but also paves the way for our future. A future that deserves the same beauty we were afforded. Ensuring the quality of life for generations ahead is a culmination of small labors and changes coming together on a daily basis to maintain a healthy environment.
At Ekornes, the efforts we make every day aren’t done because they simplify a process, or because they cut a cost. They are done because it is in the best interest of the people we care for: our families, friends, fellow Norwegians and Ekornes customers.
We reuse our materials for practical purposes to cut back on the need for additional resources – resources that could be put to better use. Instead of tossing scraps in landfills, we recycle them to meet our needs. Take for example the gorgeous European beech used for Stressless chair bases. The excess wood chips are collected and burned to produce the heat used in our facilities, cutting back on energy needs and protecting the forests surrounding us. Or the scrap leathers stretched for sofas and chairs collected and sold to companies to create smaller products so nothing goes to waste.
Complex processes are designed by our engineers to ensure the safety of our employees as well as our land. We use intensive processes, such as close-loop steel degreasing to build metal bases, which allows us to avoid harmful emissions into the air and the fjords. We implement new practices and processes to protect the health of our employees and the cleanliness of our water.
Green materials are sought out and purchased and water-based paints and lacquers are sourced. Only the highest quality materials are used. Our goal is to build a product with a minimal ecological footprint, a product that spans decades. Our daily efforts are what make Ekornes products quality products. We give you furniture that lasts, so you too can do your part for the earth.
Inspired engineering, trend forecasting and industry experience are the secret to creating luxurious furniture people are proud to own. As the “Innovators of Comfort,” we are masters of the comfort needs of the human body and continue to develop the most intuitive and beautiful comfort technology.
We earned this title through 80 years of industry experience –from developing classic pieces to trend forecasting to find the next beautiful design, we truly grasp what makes furniture part of a lifestyle.
Such innovation fueled the development of our newest collections with a fresh approach to the Stressless style – Stressless City and Stressless Metro – showcasing our understanding of global design trends. These collections are an example of the standards we hold our furniture to and why our product development process, while extensive, is crucial to the design of our elegant furniture that understands your body’s unique comfort preferences.
We begin with our experienced comfort engineers becoming students of style. They take inspiration from all types of design from fashion and color to technology and architecture to develop extraordinary furniture. The key to this innovative spirit is understanding how these trends influence our lifestyle. A beautiful gown on the runway in Milan can influence a new color of leather or fabric. A new style of décor can completely alter the design of a couch. The architecture of a bridge can change how we design the curve of a new furniture line. Constant awareness and openness to these trends make our designs far more distinctive than just something contrived in a factory.
We believe that a great idea can come from anywhere and, therefore, encourage our employees to be part of a company that creates. With designers exclusive to Ekornes, we can ensure that our employees are devoted to our mission and develop designs that are entirely ours. But how can we ensure that our designs are successful?
The design process pends entirely on the approval of our product council – a group comprised of managers, marketing executives and product developers. The product council guarantees each piece brought to market is worthy of the Stressless name. Fifteen full-time designers and product developers work to create the most attractive and functionally comfortable furniture in the industry. Beginning with around 500 design ideas, the pool is then narrowed to 100 to 200 products to be considered by the council. After three rounds of review and feedback from the council, one to 10 designs advance for further prototype development – a process that can take up to four years.
As you can imagine, this process is quite difficult for everyone involved, but is in the best interest of the customer. Many beautiful designs never make their way to market, but our understanding of trends, comfort and design guarantee that the designs that do are the best – something that can only be fully experienced once you test a chair for yourself.
You feel immediately connected to our company’s outstanding heritage and design process when sitting in a Stressless chair. Our products are much more than pieces of furniture – they are investments in your home; investments in your comfort. Lay back in a Stressless recliner and experience the complete oneness with the piece of furniture – a feeling of effortless support. Feel how the Plus™ system embraces your back and neck and how the Stressless Glide system reads your body to understand your optimal level of comfort. Every aspect of our furniture cohesively works together, making the Stressless name powerful.
For us, this level of design is simply our standard. Our mission is to develop the most comfortable seating in the world. To do this, we always stay a step ahead. Currently, we are designing for 2015 and beyond. Our trend anticipation and innovative drive enable us to continue learning and creating beautiful furniture to last a lifetime.
Under the surface of supple leather and cozy fabric lies true engineering genius. From multifaceted sets of springs to foam that contours to your body, every aspect that goes into a piece of Stressless furniture is deliberately assembled to bring you an unparalleled seating experience. Understanding the science of comfort and movement fueled our innovative spirit and desire to design the most comfortable, unique furniture in the world.
Beginning with a core built with rigid European beech, wood workers create sturdy bases with elegant curves and our distinctive swivel ring. The wood is then stained to sheer perfection and inspected to eliminate flaws.
Atop this solid base is a complex system of springs, foam and one continuous steel rod to support the entire structure. The intricate arrangement of springs includes the ultimate flexible lumbar spring in the Plus™ System, which cradles the back, neck and head for the optimal support in any recline position. The single steel rod base is created with a unique cold bending process. The process is more difficult, but it makes the product more durable.
Next, we layer foam to create the softest, most conforming seat possible. Our Comfort-Zones™ foam is molded directly over the steel base with perforations that ensure identical air pockets. This consistency ensures the foam’s ventilation and a long lasting cushion. Two more layers of foam are fashioned above that to ensure the seat is protected and fully functional.
Top-grain leather is extensively tested for color consistency, durability and elasticity. These hides, coming from the world’s finest tanneries, are then cut and stretched over the foam and sewn by our own seamstresses.
After robots expertly construct each part of the furniture, each section is assembled by hand, completing the process with extensive inspection to ensure the highest quality products – an added level of devotion required when creating the world’s smartest and most comfortable furniture.
From our factory to your home, these pieces were developed with inspired engineering to make sure that our newest chair becomes your favorite chair.
Furniture should be many things: comfortable, beautiful, functional – and also intelligent. Creating furniture that understands the human body’s unique needs became our mission. Though 80 years of experience and devotion, we became masters of this science – constantly striving to create furniture that exceeds expectations of comfort and utility.
Nothing cultivates the optimal seating environment quite like reliable support. Our distinctive Plus™ system – a functional skeleton of springs – interprets your body’s movements as you change positions to provide increased lumbar reinforcement. Lie back into your recliner and feel as your spine slides down the chair and continues to be completely supported. You also sense the unique headrest feature continue to lift your head to provide the most optimal body curvature for relaxation. A simple adjustment releases the headrest to a comfortable, flat position ideal for napping. Now, you can maintain the optimal tilt of the neck to make the most of reading, conversing or sleeping – naturally and effortlessly.
Unrestricted movement is the key to true comfort. The Stressless® Glide system reads your body’s weight and shape to adjust making reclining natural and adaptive – not conforming to any preset recline positions like most recliners. It is equally as important to be able to move in and out of your chair. With our unique swivel base, 360 degree rotation is possible, allowing for a full range of movement. Experience how a simple push of you foot will send you back into your perfect recline position and how turning in your chair happens effortlessly. We understand relaxation, so we made movement intuitive.
Your body’s interaction with a chair is vital to optimal seating experience. You should be able to sit deep into a chair, not on top of it. The Comfort-Zones™ technology lets you do just that. This foam is molded directly over the steel frame with perforated air pockets that allow you to sink entirely into the seat – creating a more soothing experience. A second layer of foam is fashioned above that to form the most comfortable and ventilated seat possible. Together, these features make Stressless recliners unmatched in comfort and adaptability.
Stressless recliners are certainly not the only pieces of this remarkable furniture that can read your body’s movements. For example, our Stressless sofas are equipped with the Ergo Adapt® feature, which allows the furniture to adapt to your seating position. Lean back into the long seat or lie across the couch and feel how this system controls the tilt in the seat to conform to your body’s most relaxed posture.
Sitting in a piece of Stressless furniture is such a soothing experience, it may be hard to pinpoint exactly which feature is providing natural comfort. Be it the unique system of springs conforming to the curve of your back, the effortless movement you are afforded in every direction or the inventive foam that cradles your body, it is clear that our complete comfort system was designed with you in mind.