Over 152 Years of Service to the Furniture Industry
 Furniture World Logo

Universal Furniture Transforms Classic Forms with Modern Style in New "Past Forward" Collection

Furniture World News Desk on 6/4/2021

Universal Furniture’s newest whole home collection, Past Forward, debuts at the spring market. Past Forward takes an eclectic mix of English, French and Scandinavian design cues, and blends each with a healthy dose of modern style to achieve a fresh, casual, comfortable collection for the home.

“Familiar surroundings bring comfort to homeowners, which is especially important in the wake of the dramatically altered lives we’ve led for the last 14 months,” said Director of Product Development Shannon Lookabill. “But there’s also a need for a bit of excitement as we re-emerge, something that lets us know we’re alive, and that’s achieved through contemporary colors and applications of stains, paints and gesso techniques.”


Three wood finishes shape the feel of the collection: Dover White, a parchment stain on oak; Flagstone, a smoke gray stain on birch; and Stonewashed Denim, a moody blue paint in a gesso application. The assortment of these three create a romantic, atmospheric environment for the home. Metal pieces feature an aged bronze finish.


Materials: Oak and poplar solids with oak, pin-knotty oak and birch veneers; metal; ring-pull hardware

Key design elements and where they reside in the collection:

  • Tapered legs - some simple, some fluted, and some with coved edges. The mix creates groupings of furniture that relate to, but never duplicate one another. These occur throughout the collection on case pieces, tables and chairs.

  • Decorative reeding – featured on the top drawer of the Miriam dresser, as well as on the doors of the Adelaide credenza which have a diamond-shaped escutcheon. Borrowed from Scandinavian design, they add texture and visual interest.

  • Fluted posts – add a classic element that softens contemporary lines. Featured significantly on the French-influenced Pryce panel bed, and also featured prominently on the two-level Lacie round ottoman, the Bedford writing desk and the rectangular dining table.

  • Scalloped corners – a bit of eye candy that sweetens key pieces like the Hexagon end table, the top of the Holt metal etagere, and the corners of both the Sadie woven and Blythe upholstered beds.

  • Metal accents – bring an organic element that lightens a room setting. Featured prominently on the stunning Past Forward cross-canopy poster bed, as well as on metal and stone multi-tiered bedside table, and on the classic Holt etagere.

  • Abaca – natural twisted abaca, featured on the Sadie woven bed, lends texture and freshness to the bedroom setting.

  • Stone Tops – serve the dual purpose of bringing natural beauty and functional quality to the multi-tiered bedside table and the rectangular cocktail table.


Standout designs in new shapes and configurations:


Justine corner cabinetThis tall, yet space-saving storage piece fits neatly in any corner of the room, and it’s ideal for smaller dining areas. Defined by its curved front and dentil molding, it features two upper and two lower cabinet doors interrupted by a small prep surface.

Scandinavian in style.


Asher utility cabinet – A tall and narrow, multi-function bedroom storage cabinet. On the left a small upper door reveals a petite facial mirror. Beneath, what appears as six drawers is actually five, with two combined to allow for one deep drawer. On the right side of the cabinet a full-length door hides a full-length mirror. Inside are a removable clothing rod and adjustable shelves.


Lawrence display cabinet –  Not your grandmother’s china cabinet. The upper half of the cabinet is in wood with a Dover white finish. It owes its light and airy feeling to glass in the doors and side panels, canted 45 degrees. The cabinet back employs horizontal paneling in the Flagstone finish. Touch lighting. Lawrence’s aged bronze metal base is completely open, save for a low metal shelf and trim supporting legs. LED strips behind the pilaster allow the use of wood shelves.


About Universal: Retailers and interior designers around the world trust Universal Furniture’s award-winning, smart and stylish designs to create modern, well-appointed living spaces for the whole home. The company’s casegood, upholstery, accent and outdoor designs are developed under the brand names Universal Furniture, Miranda Kerr Home and Coastal Living.


Universal Furniture, founded in 1968 and based in High Point, N.C., is the recipient of 12 Pinnacle awards for design excellence from the International Society of Furniture Designers. It is a brand of Samson Holdings, one of the world’s largest vertically integrated furniture manufacturers. For more information, please visit www.universalfurniture.com, or find us on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest @UniversalFurn.