Travellers of the Mediterranean have always been mesmerized by the sheer authenticity and unmistakable identity of this iconic region in Europe.
It’s no wonder that a wide array of creators, including artists and even design brands have found inspiration in the coastal cities of Italy, France and - in Alhambra’s case - Spain. Founded in Alicante, Alhambra has become one of the biggest names in fabric design over the years through its unceasing passion for Spanish culture and artisan traditions. Thanks to the brand’s Hungarian distributors, Queen Home Textil, visitors of S/ALON BUDAPEST 2021 got a taste of historic Spain in the form of Alhambra’s outstanding products, and to get to know them more, we talked to designer Luna Climent and general manager Juan Carlos Climent about their vision in the field of textile design.
What inspired the founders of Alhambra to establish a brand new company in 1977 in Alicante?
In the 70s, the Northern part of Alicante had one of the strongest textile industries in Europe, a central region of attractive fabrics. Alhambra was born as a textile manufacturer that mainly produced fabrics for the export market, but went on to establish its own style that is completely different from that of the rest of the textile design scene. For this reason, Alhambra has become a point of reference in this sector around the world.
The brand shares its name with the palace of Alhambra in Granada. What significance does the fortress hold for your company?
Our president visited the Palace of Alhambra during the 70s and it immediately made a striking impression on him.
So much so that he decided to name the company after Alhambra, finding inspiration in the beauty of this amazing building.
What are some of the key characteristics of Alhambra fabrics that make them extraordinary?
The union of our materials, textures and colors make up the Alhambra universe of fabrics, a concept that is driven by one philosophy: the idea to immerse interiors in the design identity of our clients. We decorate spaces with Alhambra fabrics to invoke a personal style and emotions. Our wide range of products contribute to a real library of styles where you can let your imagination run wild.
How does Spanish culture and tradition manifest itself in the world of Alhambra?
The current style of Alhambra textiles definitely speaks of a Mediterranean impression. Natural fibres, earthy hues, calming colours and textures, rustic looks and a refreshing style that represents the world of Mediterranean villages and islands.
But beyond that, all of our collections are inspired by the Spanish lifestyle.
Your latest collections Altea, Zahara and Candela are inspired by the sea - we presume that this can be taken literally, as in the sea surrounding Spain, or figuratively, referencing the sea of impulses people have been shaped by the past few years. Can you elaborate on the idea behind these new releases?
The sea is the essence of Alhambra. This year we have been transformed and enriched by things that are close to us. Our inspiration comes from the places we know best, those that are part of our essence and where the sea is always present.
Altea and Zahara are two collections that have been created to last. Their simplicity is a sought after quality and their natural and sustainable composition alludes to a way of life that now seduces us as if it had become a necessity.
Complementing the two collections, Candela, our par excellence linen, grows and is inspired by the shades of the earth and the sea. This time, we reinforce its colouring with 35 new tones rounding out a unique chromatic range. We have chosen to generate more ethical, responsible, circular products. The reuse of natural fibres such as recycled cotton or ecological linen, all of them double width and manufactured locally, become the common thread of the three collections. We hope that these fabrics will give you relaxation and calm.
It almost seems like there’s an endless variety of patterns, colors and textures customers can choose from at Alhambra. What are some of the most enduring and popular fabric designs?
Collections usually have a “shelf life” life of four to five years, however, there are some stand-out product families that really stood the test of time. Our range of basic and sheer products have been best sellers for many years now, including our basic Aspen collection. Linen products are also very fashionable these years, so our Candela collection is something customers are looking for.
Constant research of trends, development of technologies and innovations are essential qualities of a brand that fuses tradition and contemporary design ideas. We were fortunate enough to welcome Alhambra and its trademark quality at S/ALON BUDAPEST 2021 thanks to Queen Home Textile. We’ll hope to meet again next year at S/ALON BUDAPEST 2022 - until then, be sure to follow our official Facebook and Instagram pages for exciting news from the world of design, and much more!