Design Guild Mark Holder

HM48 Tarn

Name of Designer:

Gemma Matthias
DGM Number


Date of Award


Manufacturers’ Name

Hitch Myllius


HM48 Tarn is a sofa of contrasts; a grounded, brutalist base with a light, elegant upholstery. A traditional method of upholstery with a contemporary visual language. HitchMylius have been making furniture in North London for over 50 years. All their furniture is handmade by a highly skilled team and many of their key suppliers are local, within 12 miles. They use water-based glues and FSC certified timbers. HitchMylius’ pieces are excellent quality and designed to last.
A reductive approach was taken when designing Tarn to minimise and use common components for both base options. Although the quality of Tarn means it will last, when it does become tired, it’s designed to be easily dismantled for refurbishment or recycling. By bringing the base up into the arms we call attention to the beauty of the timber or finish of the metalwork. Tarn is a response to the blurring of contract and domestic; a comfortable, light sofa collection.


SmithMatthias was founded by Jack Smith and Gemma Matthias in 2014. The multi-disciplinary design studio applies a rigour and thoughtfulness to create soulful and impactful work. The studio is based in Brixton, a vibrant, bustling district of London.

Driven by the challenge to leave a positive footprint, SmithMatthias’ philosophy takes an exploratory and reductive approach to product design by stripping a concept down to its barest essentials whilst considering all aspects of form and function and introducing richness through material and craft. Their creative partnership thrives on problem solving  to reimagine products with intelligence, innovation and attention to detail.

SmithMatthias’s rich toolbox of skills and experience combined with their love of the natural world informs an exploration of ideas through quality of craftmanship and sustainability of materials which all culminates into products that are kept for longer and have a low impact on the planet.