Architectural Digest Blog
Richard Wrightman’s sleek Officer’s Field Set for Ghurka packs two chairs, two pillows, a blanket, and an umbrella into a leather-wrapped trunk.
Even in war, the British never sacrificed their taste for fine furnishings. In fact, in the 19th and 20th centuries, as the empire conquered territories near and far, they brought with them leather-bound chairs, tables, and umbrellas that could be taken apart and packed into hefty trunks. Straps, bolts, and levers became the hallmarks of these chic yet practical pieces that made for easy travel.
Now, in a collaboration with Ghurka—a leather brand that honors the Gurkha warriors from Nepal who have long aided the British army—American designer Richard Wrightman has created a furnishings set fit for a modern-day march.
“I’m an army brat,” Wrightman explains. “And my father was a collector of campaign furniture. So every time we moved, I would help break everything down and pack it up.”
In his years making furniture, Wrightman has created several riffs on the iconic officer’s field chair, and his set for Ghurka, comprising two folding chairs, two pillows, a blanket, and an umbrella, is designed to pack neatly into a box. Rendered in Ghurka’s signature chestnut leather with accents of hunter-green and red wool drawn from the officer’s uniform, the collection is perfect for an alfresco evening or a chic picnic. “One of the requirements was that the top of the chest be an eating surface,” Wrightman says. Though it costs a cool $17,500, it’s a fortune well spent, as two-thirds of the proceeds will benefit Ghurka veterans through the Ghurka Welfare Trust.
The collection is available now through London’s Fortnum & Mason and will make its U.S. debut later this summer at New York’s Explorers Club.