Seat cushions for modern nomads

How to transfer the comfort of upholstery to a modern chair? Alvo transforms the oriental tradition of sitting on cushions and creates a new form of sedentariness. Premiere: imm cologne 2019

Rheda-Wiedenbrück/Cologne, 14 January 2019. Humans have only been sitting on chairs for about two hundred years, at least in the West. Once a privilege and only permitted to a few, sitting on chairs became a majority practice, and thanks to industrial production methods, series production began in the 20th century. The construction of the seat, back and legs, the form and function of a chair remain basically the same to this day, with exceptions proving the rule. Seating comfort and convenience, however, are not innate to furniture and are often reinforced using additional upholstery: Do you have another cushion? By definition, the "bags filled with down, foam or another soft material" can do a great deal: cushions are used for resting, sitting or decoration, even for meditation. Their invitation to settle down comfortably has been around since nomadic times. Anyone who can stay longer in one place under favourable conditions establishes communities and becomes sedentary.

Fine shell, soft core

Picking up on this cultural tradition, Stuttgart-based designers Jehs+Laub have been designing modern, cosy upholstered furniture for COR in their characteristic use of forms since 2010. Their Jalis sofa consists of folded cushions on a pedestal. With the Cordia Lounge furniture, the basic idea of giving sofas and armchairs as fine a shell as possible and a softer, "cushy" interior has been further developed. The Moss sofa, filled with down, was launched only last year; a divan for the 21st century on which people seem to float rather than sit. This comfort principle has now been transferred to the "hardware" under the seating furniture. In 2019, Alvo was designed as a modern upholstered chair. "We wanted to achieve an elegant design that appears light and integrative," says marketing director Berthold Strüve. Supersoft was the working title under which the initial design entered product development. The furniture meets this objective both materially and emotionally.

Snug and in good company

Lightly supportive and protective: Alvo (Latin for mother's lap) is a new seating concept that is as aesthetic as it is comfortable; its clear design language and high-quality materials intimate this at first glance. On the outside the wafer-thin shell made of elastic plastic, on the inside an upholstered cushion with four "wings". If you take a closer look, you will see the quilted chambers, more luxuriously upholstered for the seat and back, with reduced filling on the armrests. Finishing details like these also display their effect ergonomically – with the result that different body contours are accommodated as ideally as possible. In order to promote more dynamic sitting, the curves of the seat shell have been given fine recesses. When leaning forwards or backwards, Alvo is slightly springy, providing pleasant support for changing body angles to the right or left. In addition to their traditional benefits, chairs are assuming a new socio-cultural function in our furnishing: "It is said that we are becoming more and more mobile," says COR owner Leo Lübke, "but in fact we spend an enormous amount of time sitting in chairs. They have moved into the centre of our lives together, whether we are cooking, eating, conversing or working". Alvo makes these new forms of sedentariness possible. However, the models, which are designed individually for its owners, do not originate from the Orient. Ever since 1954, every handcrafted, unique piece has come from the COR factory in Rheda-Wiedenbrück, East Westphalia.


Contact COR 

Berthold Strüve, Head of Marketing 
Nonenstraße 12, 33378 Rheda-Wiedenbrück, Deutschland
T. +49.(0) 52 42. 41 02-240,


Helga Sonntag-Kunst, hsk communications
Warnckesweg 43, 22453 Hamburg, Deutschland
t +49.(0) 172 4157756,

The East Westphalian seating furniture manufacturer has continuously reduced its greenhouse gas emissions according to its recently published Sustainability Report 2022/2023. It has also improved its environmental footprint in many other respects.

Sponsored by the German Institute for Service Quality, the DUP UNTERNEHMER magazine and ntv, the award went to the East Westphalian seating furniture manufacturer for first place in the category of recycling with the CORever second-life programme.…