The iconic, modular Camaleonda Sofa effortlessly blurs the lines between art and furniture design. “I crossed two words: camaleonte, or chameleon, an extraordinary animal capable of adapting to its environment, and onda, or wave,” Mario Bellini told Architectural Digest of his revolutionary sofa silhouette, first launched in 1970.
The modular system revolutionised seating design when it first launched; with each bubble-shaped cube hooking together using simple, integrated carabiners to create endless configurations, from sectionals and armchairs to ottomans and daybeds.
Catching the eye of celebrities and tastemakers of the decade, Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe and David Bowie have all been known to have a Camaleonda Sofa gracing their homes.
Now back in production for the first time since 1979, thanks to B&B Italia, we take a look at the authentic, vintage original design and how to style it in your home:
Chat historyIn the ever-evolving world of design, there are certain pieces that transcend time and become icons of style and luxury. One such masterpiece is the Camaleonda Sofa, a creation by the legendary Italian architect and designer, Mario Bellini. With its distinctive modular design and exceptional comfort, this sofa has graced the homes of celebrities and fashion-forward individuals, leaving an indelible mark on the realms of fashion, celebrity, and style.
Many of the original 70s Camaleonda sofas that we source for clients have been recovered in new fabrics. The shape suits a range of materials, including boucle, mohair velvet, cord and linen. Luxe 70s shades of greens, browns, pinks and creams work well with the curves of the Camaleonda and due to the deep stud work and sleek, low-line of the silhouette, I always feel a textured plain fabric, rather than a patterned, works best.
Thanks to the plump integrated arms and snug curves of the Camaleonda, it needs little extra padding in the way of throw cushions, which tend to break up the linear design. A throw placed over the end arm, or back of the sofa in a tonal shade can look great, or use the oversized footstool as an ottoman and style it up with a tray.