Profiles: FoundersHomegirl London pays homage to  With their mantra “beautiful furniture without the high street mark up,” this online retailer brings you desirable, designer furniture at favourable prices. not only delivers on the style front, they also engage with the audience to rate the quality and price of products before they go on sale.  This company is the brainchild of 30-year-old serial entrepreneur Ning Li (CEO) who co-founded the firm with Julien Callède and Chloe Macintosh.  Through the entrepreneurial vision of Ning Li, has transformed the way the UK buys its furniture.  Customers are invited to engage with the growing team (all 60 of them) via social media and their voting section to rate the quality and pricing of the product before the piece is available to buy.  Through crowdsourcing, delivers practical and fashionable pieces of furniture.  Being purely online means there are no warehousing costs, overheads or inventory as everything is made to order eliminating any excess stock.  The multi-award-winning company strives to offer the best to UK home buyers and all for dramatically reduced prices; often up to 70%.  Chloe Macintosh and Julien Callède source and combine international manufacturers with global designers to create exclusive and new products which are released twice a week. is constantly on the lookout for new designers, they have worked with over 20 worldwide established designers and artists including Ai Weiwei, Damien Hirst, John Stefanidis, Steuart Padwick and the Chapman Brothers.   Ning Li, CEO of kindly answered a few questions for me …

Q: What inspired you to set up

A: The original inspiration behind was when I went to purchase a sofa a few years ago.  I couldn’t quite believe that stores can charge £3000 for a piece of furniture that I had seen being manufactured at a fraction of the price in a friend’s factory.  I decided to make a stand against typical furniture retail giants and offer public designer furniture at a fraction of the usual high street price.

Q: What gave you the idea to crowdsource furniture?

A: We wanted a way for the public to interact with and have more control over what they see on the site.  After all, the public are the best people to decide what we retail!

Q: What have been your top three best sellers?

A: There are many but I’d say particular stand-outs have been the Stroller Desk (designed by Steuart Padwick), Jonah Collection (designed by James Harrison and made in the UK) and the Bouji Chairs (see below for images of the items Ning Li has mentioned).

Q: What’s your favourite piece of furniture from the current range?

A: I see particular qualities and innovation behind every piece on the site.

Q: Will you be working with any new designers in 2012?

A: Chloe Macintosh (Co-founder and Head of Collections) says – new designers, we are talking to include Jimmie Martin, Caroline Davidson, Catherine Cazalet and Allegra Hicks.

Check them out at UK.  The top image shows Ning Li, Julien Callède, Chloe Macintosh. Credits: special thanks to Ning Li and Clare Gaba, photography supplied by UK.

Stroller desk, Made

The Stroller desk designed by award-winning Steuart Padwick, £349

Jonah, Made

The Jonah collection is designed by rising British design star James Harrison.  Chairs are £399, two-seater sofas £499, three-seater sofas £599


The Bouji collection comprises of boudoir-style chairs, £189 and an ottoman £169