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      Press Release
      May 21, 2024

      Upholstery Materials from Continental Make Their Debut at Clerkenwell Design Week

      • Continental’s surface specialists are exhibiting their top-quality artificial leather portfolio from the skai brand at Clerkenwell Design Week for the first time
      • High-profile global design festival offers special experiences with its unique exhibition concept
      • Continental is placing the focus on design, functionality and sustainability

      Hanover/London, Germany/UK, May 21, 2024. The team of surface specialists at Continental are presenting their synthetic upholstery fabrics from the skai brand for the first time at the Clerkenwell Design Week festival. "At Clerkenwell Design Week, we are looking to showcase the broad diversity of our designs – from the visibly sustainable, with natural-looking textures, through to the technical and futuristic," outlines Ralf Imbery, Head of Design, Marketing and Strategy at Continental’s Surface Solutions business area. "To this end, we are offering a young, design-savvy audience a creative playground and encouraging them to really feel our materials."

      Interior designers, furniture makers and end customers are also looking for functionality and, increasingly, sustainability, alongside outstanding design. The surface specialists from Continental are therefore using their Clerkenwell debut to shine the spotlight on products which fit these requirements particularly well.

      The festival organizers are expecting over 37,000 design enthusiasts to attend the event in north London, which is taking place on May 21 – 23. Behind the Victorian facades of the twelve Clerkenwell Design Week venues are 160 showrooms hosting presentations from over 300 exhibitors. This high-profile global design festival transforms an entire district of London into a world of luxury interiors which invites visitors to walk around and explore – making it quite possibly one of a kind.

      The booth set up by technology company Continental in the Catapult building is headed ‘Sustainability starts at the surface – and surfaces are our creative playground.’ This message is exemplified by materials such as skai VyP Coffee and skai Evida Fiber. "We used coffee grounds as a raw material for the first time in our breathable upholstery fabric skai VyP Coffee," states Imbery. 

      "This allowed us to replace over 65 percent of the conventional chemical raw materials used in this artificial leather with natural, renewable and recycled substances. And it has already won the prestigious European Green Award." Thanks to its breathable design, skai VyP Coffee offers impressive comfort even when sitting for long periods, making it an excellent upholstery material for seating in hotels, cafés, restaurants and offices.

      skai artificial leather – design, functionality and sustainability

      The environmental footprint of skai Evida Fiber organic artificial leather has also been greatly improved, with natural and renewable raw materials accounting for over 90 percent of its constituent components. “The grain’s fine, fiber-like texture makes it immediately clear that this is a sustainable product,” explains Imbery. What is more, skai Evida Fiber is certified according to Oeko-Tex Standard 100 and is vegan, as are all artificial leathers from Continental. Other standout qualities of this sustainable material include its wide range of colors with natural tones, richly varied grain pattern and abrasion-resistant and flame-retardant surface.


      Another exhibit on show is skai Tovosoft EN, a material whose soft, comfortable finish invites you to touch it and enjoy the amazing tactile experience. "We achieve a voluminous flow effect thanks to its honeycomb structure," says Imbery. "The muted range of nude, beige and earthy tones fits perfectly here." At the more futuristic-looking end of the scale is skai Totexo EN, whose textile grain creates an elegant appearance with its matte-gloss effect. This makes it an ideal choice both for digital work environments and for modern furnishing concepts in the hospitality and living space sectors. 

      Continental’s surface specialists can be found in the German Pavilion at Clerkenwell Design Week (in the Catapult building on the corner of Sekforde Street/St. James Walk) from May 21 – 23. Entrance is free, but visitors have to register beforehand at

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