In Good Company is a hidden design destination in Melbourne that showcases local and international brands with an emphasis on quality, craftsmanship and authenticity
When husband-and-wife team Louise and John Bastiras were laying out the floorplan for the new Armadale showroom of their furniture retail brand In Good Company, the biggest decision was which of its six doors would serve as the main entrance. Everything else was intuition and instinct, which can be attributed to their years in the design industry, including more than two decades as managers of renowned retailer Luke Furniture.
Accessible via a lane in a leafy cul-de-sac in Melbourne, In Good Company is a vast, white-washed corner shop with a series of graphic arches left over from its previous incarnation as a bright and busy Mexican homewares store. ‘It just oozed so much character,’ says Louise of the space’s initial appeal. An Interior Architect by trade, she says she ‘fell in love with it right away.’ The pair always dreamed of having a physical design-cum-retail presence for In Good Company. ‘For so long we dreamt of doing something that gave us full control. Our desire was to sit alongside those we enjoy working with.’
In Good Company stocks a mix of established brands and exclusive, independent international labels like Danese Milano and Denmark-based Pandul. Louise says that while there’s no firm aesthetic criteria, ‘there’s absolutely no compromising on authenticity’. ‘We support historic and established collections, and for the newer collections, we look for longevity. We also love smaller brands that might not have had major recognition but nevertheless have a beautiful design story behind them,’ she says. Also on display is a selection of mid-century pieces curated by John, who spent years as a vintage furniture dealer in Adelaide. Under the name John Bastiras Designs, he’s also launched a successful furniture collection of his own.
Products range from linen to furniture and accessories, and are merchandised with a residential feel. ‘Everything can be moved around depending on what comes in and we’re often rearranging things on a daily basis. The counter is fixed at the back so it doesn’t interfere with the setting and people can take their time.’ In addition to welcoming walk-ins, In Good Company consults with clients on residential properties and works closely with some of Australia’s best architects and interior designers. Looking to the future, Louise says that she and John are focusing on growing In Good Company’s locally manufactured collections and fostering new partnerships, as well as considering design collaborations.
Text / Carli Philips
Images / Felix Mooneeram