Victoria McKenney on what it really takes to bring a designer furniture collection to market

Vancouver, BC-based Interior designer Victoria McKenney, principal of Enviable Designs recently debuted her first furniture collection called Namesake. This week on Disruptive Design, McKenney sits down with DNN Editor in Chief Courtney Porter to discuss insights and challenges during the process of developing a product line and emerging interior design trends. Click play on the video below to watch their discussion or read on for takeaways about what you should know before starting a product line:


What to know before you develop a product line

On working with manufacturers to develop her line, Victoria said preparedness is key. “Just prepare for a bit of a long haul, and know that you might have a few failures before you get the perfect pieces. It’s really just a learning experience.” (For further reading: So you’d like to have a brand collab?)

Proportions and materiality

One major challenge was getting the proportions and details right on upholstered pieces. “You need to have all the prototypes made, you need to try them out, see how it works. And sometimes the fabrics you choose don’t work as well as you were hoping.”

Finding a gap in the market to fill

Victoria aimed to fill a gap in the market between contemporary and traditional styles with her transitional, timeless designs. Her bestseller was the McKenney bed, with its soft lines and attention to detail – a surprise for the designer. (Re related reading: Filling the gap in the upholstery market)

Design by Victoria McKenney, Enviable Designs | Photography by Ema Peter

Where we are headed

When it comes to vendor partnerships, Victoria is inspired by smaller makers using unique materials like marble and creating oversized, bold pieces with an organic aesthetic. “I think people are valuing quality over quantity right now…and looking for unique pieces that are locally crafted.”

For interior designers starting product lines, Victoria advises not to cut corners on details like quality painters but find ways to reduce costs wisely, such as streamlining materials.  

Looking further ahead, Victoria foresees people moving away from the modern farmhouse aesthetic toward a “more polished look…a little bit more refined.” She also sees the continued blending of residential and hospitality design influences. (For related reading: The Rise of the Hotel Lobby Home)

About Victoria McKenney and Enviable Designs

Enviable Designs is the natural culmination of Victoria’s interior design studies in Vancouver, BC and her passion for art, further deepened by her Bachelor’s Degree in Art History from the University of British Columbia. Her extensive travels across Western Europe continue to inspire her affinity for classic lines and materials, which prominently feature in her designed spaces.

See Also

Victoria is renowned for seamlessly blending form and function to craft warm, inviting residential interiors that resonate with her clients’ personalities. She finds inspiration from diverse sources – from the simplicity of a flower’s lines to the flowing forms of the Guggenheim Bilbao museum.

Victoria McKenney | Photograph by Art of Headshots

At Enviable Designs Inc., the goal is to bring “comfortable sophistication” to clients’ homes by effortlessly merging European classic style with modern touches and traditional twists. Victoria’s sparkling personality and positive guidance are considered invaluable assets by her clients.

Her friendly approach ensures an enjoyable and rewarding design process for her many returning and new clients alike. Featured projects span locations like Vancouver, Victoria, Kelowna and Toronto. Victoria is a member of CDECA and NKBA professional associations.For more information about Victoria McKenney, Enviable Designs, and Namesake visit her online.

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