MISSISSAUGA, Ontario – When thinking of furniture requiring assembly at home, people brands requiring the use of a trusty Allen key, such as IKEA, usually spring to mind. However, this might change with a Canadian flooring producer’s launch of a unique furniture line that ‘clicks’ together without the need for any tools at all.
Pelican Creations Home, a family-owned flooring company based here introduced its ClicHome collection to retailers, designers and consumers at this year’s edition of the Interior Design Show (IDS) in Toronto.
“It’s a brand-new introduction for us,” Michael Poulin, vice-president of Pelican Creations Home, which was founded some 25 years ago, told Home Goods Online. “We’ve been primarily focused on flooring for the past 15 or so years. We’re taking the three-spine flooring technology created by Välinge Innovation (a Swedish research and development company) and putting that in furniture.”
ClicHome utilises Valinge’s patented locking system which allows the consumer/end-user to literally click pieces to create case good pieces such as bedside tables, beds, bookcases, wardrobes, cabinets, coffee tables, desks, sideboards and TV stands together.
“We have 70 items in our line, everything from bedside tables to beds to media units to chests of drawers and shoe organizations. We just finished developing bookshelves,” he says.
This chest of drawers (seen here at right) is part of the ClicHome collection from Pelican Creations Home. Set for shipping to retailers later this year, this uses Swedish technology to create a line of case goods the consumer can assemble by clicking its various components together – a first in the North American market.
According to Poulin, the collection is six times faster to assemble than traditional furniture and is equally as easy to take apart. As far as disassembly goes, all pieces come equipped with a plastic strip that disengages the locking system when it is inserted along the edge of a product.
Poulin says while ClicHome’s technology has been around for some time, his company is the first to bring it to the Canadian market.
“I discovered the three-spine technology on one of my trips to China while sourcing products. We’re bringing this product line, finally, to the North American market,” he says, adding Välinge licenses the technology out to manufacturers around the world.
“We utilized their R&D team to manufacture pieces with styles that are on-trend for the North American market. We’re the first ones to bring it to North America.”
Poulin says the products – which are slated to hit the retail market this year – are designed to appeal to a wide demographic of buyers. “We’re targeting people who are going back to college, the mom and dad setting up a new home, etc. We’ll have products that will be for anyone setting up a home, a room, or a condo. We’re offering a premium product that goes together easily, and it can go with you to college and then back to your mom’s house. It’s no-tools furniture assembly, and it doesn’t take any strength to put it together.”
As far as aesthetics go, Poulin says ClicHome products are designed to appeal to consumers seeking out sleek, affordable home goods.
“[Being in the] flooring industry gives us the know-how and insight into furniture. For the overall style, we’re following what’s happening in Europe and the U.K., that’s usually a trendsetter. Mid-century modern to somewhat traditional items, we feel are on-trend right now. It’s what you’d see at Structube and EQ3 and these are the customers that we’re looking to chase as well,” he says.
“We use particleboard and metals. We don’t use any pure solid woods because of the inconsistencies in the wood and the weight.”
While the product is not yet available for purchase as of this writing, Poulin says Pelican has already received positive feedback and is working on generating buzz with the help of Toronto Raptors sportscaster and analyst Jack Armstrong, who is currently working as a brand ambassador for the company.
“[Armstrong has come] to meet and greets and he came to IDS. We had a day on the golf course with Jack Armstrong,” he says, adding Armstrong is also working with Pelican to promote its new CushionTech flooring line.
CushionTech, which is expected to roll out at retailers this fall, has been five years in the making. “It’s SPC (stone plastic composite) flooring that’s engineered and manufactured in a different way with a comfort layer of EVA,” says Poulin.
Poulin says CushionTech – which has been designed for both residential and commercial environments – features Uniclic, a locking technology created by Belgium-based Unilin Technologies that allows for faster installation. According to Pelican, the flooring’s Comfort Core technology integrates a soft ‘cushion’ layer underneath the top layer of the flooring to improve ergonomics and provide a more comfortable walking surface.
“IDS was our first time introducing ClicHome to the public eye, and we were thrilled by the response we did get. The smile on people’s faces when they click down the lid on a bookcase or a desk, they’re shocked. We opened the eyes of a lot of designers who wanted to know, ‘where can I get this?’ There’s something missing out there that people are looking for. It’s a new way of doing ordinary things,” he enthused.
“It’s exciting to see retailers and customers in Canada get excited. Everyone is looking for that new thing, that exciting thing to break the old mould and that’s what CushionTech and ClicHome are bringing to the market.”