Focused on quality, customization and sustainable production, Whom is furniture for personalities, custom-designed at the most competitive price point, and shipped to you in four weeks or less. Who else is doing that? It's not "who," it's whom.
As much as it pains me to say this, summer is almost over, and we’re about to transition into a new (albeit much cooler) season. Which honestly, for me, is enough of an excuse to start thinking about changing things up at home. Nothing major, but I feel like a new chair for the living room or a new piece of art would do the trick and help break me out of my current decorating rut. But where to shop when you don’t want to drop a fortune on a chair or have the exact same sofa as your neighbor?
We’re all familiar with the big box stores and major players in the online home décor space, but I bet you haven’t heard of Whom yet. They’re a brand new direct-to-consumer furniture brand focused on sustainability and custom built pieces. The brand launched this August with a wide variety of styles for basically every room in the house. And when you factor in the three different metal finishes (matte black, brass, silver), over 50 fabrics in a dozen different weave styles, and three different wood stain options, the number of pieces you can create is, well, pretty endless.
Each of Whom’s products is named for a specific type of personality, which is kind of cheeky and fun (though some of the marketing images with models are a bit much, but I digress).
I love The Connoisseur, which has an angular metal frame, yet somehow, with its sloped back cushion and seat, still looks comfortable to sit in. Depending on the color of upholstery you select, it could read as glam and girly or architectural and minimalist.
I’m also into the versatility of The Alchemist coffee table. It’s modular, so you’re pretty much getting three tables for the price of one. And the fact that the tables nest is clutch for any small space.
Both of those pieces cost around $1,000, so Whom is not exactly cheap. But trust that this level of personalization elsewhere would cost you more. And you probably wouldn’t get your order in two to four weeks time, which is what Whom promises for all items.
Make no mistake about it though—Whom is fast, but it’s not fast fashion for home. Pieces are hand finished by craftsmen. Whom’s hardwood lumber is sustainably harvested, their North American factory has a zero-waste policy, and they use recycled polystyrene in their mirrors, picture frames, and wall décor. Translation: these are not the type of purchases you leave on the curb when you move.
And did I mention Whom also offers pillows, artwork, and decorative accessories? There’s really something for everyone. There’s even a collection of pet beds and bowls that are among the chicest I’ve ever seen. So go ahead, and get lost on their site. At the very least, you’ll get a kick out of their product names and hopefully, a little inspiration for your next big seasonal refresh. I know I did.
"We wanted to try to create a breakup with disposable furniture, because we felt it’s killing the planet." These are the words of Jonathan Bass—a design industry veteran, and the brain behind Whom, a new direct-to-consumer, millennial-focused furniture brand, which launched this week. Whom's offerings includes complete ranges for bedrooms, living rooms, and dining rooms. The bed frames, sofa, sectionals, tables, and chairs all possess somewhat streamlined silhouettes, with the occasional pop of color.
While Bass's focus on the environment likely is a sentiment shared by many born between 1981 and 1996, millennials are also a demographic with a itinerant reputation and a penchant for purchasing fast furniture. Nevertheless, Bass is looking to help change that latter fact—thanks to his confidence in what this young bracket of shoppers really want.
Each of Whom’s products is named for a specific type of personality, which is kind of cheeky and fu n (though some of the marketing images with models are a bit much, but I digress).
"I think that the millennial consumer is very concerned about supply chains, sustainability, and the environment in general," Bass tells AD PRO. "They're not so brand-loyal, but they are product-loyal. And if the product is best-in-class, they vote for it." Speaking further on this matter, he states, "We feel that the market in general has always been a margin game, whereas our standpoint is, how do we offer the best product and compete with what’s out there?"
Bass's way of thinking traces its roots to his work launching the Badgley Mischka home collection. While working for the brand, Bass focused on bringing a clear sense of materials and production-based knowledge to his customers. However, he quickly found that although such a focus was prevalent throughout the luxury home market, it wasn't something that was accessible to those shopping at a lower price point. Summarizing his thought process, Bass says, "The upper-end market gave [me] experience in what that high-end consumer wants, and we want to bring that expectation to a more affordable line of products."
Bass also believes that today, transparency isn't something that is truly present across the home decor industry. He asks rhetorically at one point: "Do the factories really deliver on what they say? In terms of things like off-gassing?" Many consumers are not aware of how and where a product is being made—and whether or not it lives up to the claims made in its branding materials.
Experience and market research aside, creating a sustainable, transparent, and affordable furniture company is easier said than done. So how exactly did Bass and his team approach meeting their goals? "We didn’t start with a price point in mind," he says. "We didn’t work backwards. We went about building products that we really wanted to build, and that we are proud of." Bass goes on to elaborate that many companies tend to take the reverse approach. In such instances, sacrifices quickly have to be made—such as by downgrading to cheaper materials to meet budget constraints.
According to Whom, the company also has complete control over its supply chain. If Whom doesn't make the item, it is not incorporated into the product line. The company is also focused on domestic production, and its factories will undergo an extensive number of audits. Producing chairs, tables, and more in closer proximity to its buyers also comes with a pro-environmental ripple effect. If a container of couches doesn't have to be loaded and then processed through multiple distribution centers, a lot of energy gets saved. Of course, domestic production makes Whom's business more expensive to run. That's where the direct-to-consumer model comes in, which helps offset such costs.
The final piece of Bass's strategy may just be the people with whom he chooses to surround himself. "The team that runs [Whom] is completely millennial," he says, adding with a laugh that "even our PR firm is all millennial." Striking a more serious note, he adds, "We let them really go for it. If you look at the site, we took a lot of chances. No one is presenting furniture like we ar
Clearly, Bass's multi-pronged strategy aims to position his business to succeed. And while he is adamant that Whom delivers on its promises, in the long run he's hoping to make waves throughout the industry. "If we can prove this can be done, hopefully others will jump in and do the same," he says. A potential environmental legacy, if ever there was one.
It's exhilarating when you find a piece of furniture that really exemplifies who you are. It feels personal — and that's a good thing. While there's hardly a shortage of options online, if you're in the market for a beautiful, hand-crafted piece that was made just for you, then look no further.
Introducing Whom — the newest direct-to-consumer furniture brand behind the minimal home pieces that reflect the modern design-lover. Bound to take the world by a storm, each hand-crafted piece can be upholstered in over 50 different fabrics, with a dozen different weave styles to choose from. Take your pick between six different unique wood and metal finishes, or mix and match to make your new piece truly bespoke.
“Whom is here to flip mass furniture upside down," said CEO Jonathan Bass. "We’re putting the focus back on the people. Our product is best in class — and the process is sustainable. We don’t hoodwink the consumer, we embrace them."
What's more, each Whom piece is assigned a different personality trait. Curious? We thought you might be. Read on to discover what Whom piece might best reflect you.
A curator's job is to give meaning to an object, a sense of context and place. This lounge chair gives you the perfect opportunity to impress your guests.
The generalist loves the freedom of versatility. Just imagine all of the different ways there are to decorate this side table.
Leave it up to the promoter to hype this plush lounge chair! We're thinking a living area or bedroom in need of a little warmth would work best.
The sentinel, also known as the loyal one, would die for these two decorative side tables. Seriously, these little accents will never let you down when it comes to elevating your bedroom space.
Amorists, prepare to fall head over heels in love with this delicate, linear accent chair. Its sleek metal legs and contemporary seat have the capacity to inspire endless love poems.
Look, there's nothing wrong with Ikea. You can get all sorts of things for your home there, and you can get them damn cheap. But they're not always the most interesting or unique pieces. Nor are they built to last. Who among us has had to dispose of a piece when moving to a new place because it simply wouldn't survive a move? (*waits for everyone to raise their hand.) There are places like Design Within Reach, which offer beautiful icons of interior design, but despite the name, the items aren't always priced within reach. Thankfully, a new crop of direct-to-consumer brands and flat-pack furniture have seemingly showed up out of the woodwork. They offer modern pieces that are as sturdy as they are stylish. They also pack up nicely and transform to suit a slew of spaces, meaning you can make them work in your current and future home.
This millennial-focused brand, founded by design industry veteran Jonathan Bass, is a newcomer to the direct-to-consumer landscape. The line offers a wide range of items for every room in your place, with an aim to be as transparent and sustainable as possible. Instead of working backwards to hit an unrealistically low price, they simply focused on building the best versions of what they wanted—from this cool, sloping chaise lounge to a handsome media console.
Have you suddenly noticed a shocking pink sofa in the living room of a neighbor’s home? And then another? Or maybe a cozy couch with a classic curved back in colors like hemp and serpentine that’s suddenly turning up in shelter magazines?
These pieces of furniture, according to a recent sampling of Los Angeles retailers, are among the bestsellers in their showrooms and on their websites right now.
Sometimes, the hot favorites are surprising.
“Seemingly out of nowhere, it seems like everyone wants a Restoration Hardware Maxwell sofa,” said John Linden, a Los Angeles-based interior designer. “A number of clients started asking me about it. It’s a simple enough piece of furniture — a traditional, minimal sofa that takes inspiration from the Midcentury Modern style.”
Here are some options to consider if you are shopping for a sofa and want to be on trend.
Just launched in July as a direct-to-consumer e-tailer, West Hollywood-based Whom Home already has a clear front-runner in its couch offerings — the Influencer (above). Available in a glam crushed pink velvet with brass, cobalt blue with silver or earth tones and black metal, the couch is available in 5- to 8-foot lengths. Starting at $1,988 at whomhome.com