'100% Filipino-made': Pampanga furniture maker shares success story despite pandemic
MANILA, Philippines — Unique, artsy pieces of furniture effortlessly elevate not only aesthetic of one’s space, but also the overall mood and atmosphere of it. And Pampanga-based Genteel Home offers a bunch of inspired pieces for those who are always on the lookout for extraordinary home interiors.
Katrina Blanca De Leon, principal designer and owner, recalled how the start of her shop was serendipitous.
In 2013, she was commissioned to design a furniture piece, which led her to find the right partners to start her first store. Eight years later, in 2021, serendipity combined with passion, talent, and hardwork led her to the opening of Genteel Home's first showroom.
Upon entering the new showroom, guests will be greeted by a huge floor space that showcases thoughtfully and meticulously put-together pieces of bespoke furniture that paint a picture of cozy living rooms, elegant dining rooms, and stunning master bedrooms.
De Leon shared that at Genteel Home, they don't just create art and furniture pieces that fill up space.
"The pieces that we create at Genteel Home are 100% Filipino-made," said De Leon. "Every material is locally sourced, and every piece is crafted with love and built to last by talented Filipinos."
On the far right of the showroom is a grand staircase that leads to the mezzanine where the offices and design studio are situated.
Since its humble beginnings, the company's mission has always been to elevate the art of interior design and to provide a more personal and enjoyable furniture-making and design experience for its clientele. Their designs and creations reflect the personality of their clients and provide "The Genteel Experience."
The showroom is attached to a workshop where clients can watch how their commissioned pieces of furniture — from Solihiya sofas and chairs to side tables, bed frames, and other accent furniture in different styles and sizes -- are meticulously constructed by the skillful craftsmen of Pampanga.
From a small team of seven, the company is now composed of senior and junior architects, engineers, and project managers that share the same passion and love for interior design and bespoke craftsmanship.
"With our new home, we promise to create more high-quality pieces that are proudly Filipino-made," said De Leon. "We also hope to further contribute to our local furniture and interior design industry by working with more small and medium enterprises and skillful artists and craftsmen."