Michigan Home and Lifestyle | Winter 2015

 

DESIGNER DALE H. CAMPBELL
Winner of The Kendall Designer Artist Award
WRITER | CANDIE CONAT

29 years ago after a career in art and antiques, Dale H. Campbell began his career in the furniture industry. Early on, he made the choice to work with a French furniture manufacturer; this allowed him many trips to Europe which in turn gave him invaluable insight into the European business philosophy and architecture. He furthered his furniture education by learning the retail side of the industry which came from co-managing a retail store with the woman who would later become his wife, Teresa Campbell.

In 1995 Dale joined furniture company Lloyd Flanders as a National Sales Manager and later moved on to become Vice President of Sales and Marketing. This is where Dale’s keen interest in furniture design started to spark ideas and soon he was embarking on a venture to put that design talent to the test. Since then he has designed 18 collections; some of which are still the most enduring and highest earning collections in the industry.

Dale’s passion for designing furniture is evident in the fact that he has won the three top awards in furniture design. In 2005 he won the ADEX Platinum American Designer Excellence Award along with the 2005 Designer Excellence Award from the American Casual Furniture Association. In 2006, Dale won the Pinnacle award, which he likens to an actor winning an Oscar. He competed with the likes of Martha Stewart who showed up at the ceremony with her usual entourage of at least a dozen people. Dale was there with the support of his wife and a friend; he was sure Martha would win but suddenly he realized his wife and friend were both telling him – “Stand up! It’s you!” He was shocked and excited to hear he had won the Pinnacle award that year. His exclusive chase lounge design is still being sold by Lloyd Flanders to this day and has been proven to stand the test of time.

In 2007, Dale embarked on two new adventures. First, he created his new store, Urban Diversions, a high end interior design store and studio. Urban Diversions offers a variety of services including refresh or remodel of existing homes, cabins and cottages, or the full design of new construction. He designs everything from kitchen and bath to all living spaces – inside and out. Dale’s motto is “Expect more than others think possible. Dream more than others think practical.” He considers Urban Diversions to be a starting point for his clients to see the variety of styles, fabrics and wood choices that can transform their living space. Dale’s design service includes the opportunity to shop with clients, searching for just the right pieces with the perfect colors and fabric designs to match their personality and living space. He will transform any room or entire home from boring and drab to stunning and breathtaking. When he started the store he promised himself he would never sell anything that he had to apologize for and he prides himself on selling 100% American made, high quality furniture lines.

While working on the opening of his store/studio, Dale began designing his own line of furniture that is currently being marketing under the name Diversions. The first Diversions lounge chair embodies Dale’s influential and architectural experiences from around the world…I sat in one and my first thought was “I could sleep in this chair”.

With the creation of this first Diversions branded chair, Dale has partnered with the Kindel Furniture Company based in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Kindel has been a family owned furniture manufacturer since 1901 and is known for 100% American-made furniture lines. Campbell is the first guest designer in the new Kindel Designer Artist Series and considers this to be paramount in his furniture design career and to his future in design. The chair and ottoman were debuted at Urban Diversions on August 29, 2015 and have now been added to the Kindel product line. Dale likes to say of this new partnership “Designed in Michigan, made in Michigan, enjoyed everywhere!” The Designer Artist Series is an extension to Kindel’s “Create Something New” initiative that was introduced earlier this year. Robert Burch, CEO of Kindel Furniture says, “With this new program, we are taking our customization ability even further than ever before. This will allow for original designs to be built for interior designers who seek to have their own creations for residential and commercial projects.” Campbell chose to work with Kindel for their shared Michigan roots and the company’s willingness to work from his drawings and build his designs. He says it just plain makes sense to be a Michigan designer partnering with a Michigan Manufacturer.

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