- Posted on 27th October 2016 by Nicola Holden
Also part of the London Design Festival this year were Design Junction, at its new home in Kings Cross, and The London Design Fair, on the other side of town at the Old Truman Brewery. My day started early, with a breakfast reception at Design Junction. It was a beautiful, crisp, sunny day as I walked from Kings Cross station.
Design Junction was made up of two main sections, Cubitt House, with its spectacular facade designed by architectural firm Satellite Architects alongside Icons of Denmark, and The Canopy. Cubitt House was the place to be for cutting-edge furniture, lighting and accessories, whist The Canopy was a pop-up venue for 70 luxury retail brands selling everything from fashion accessories to technology, textiles and stationery to ceramics.
Kicking off my highlights from Design Junction is well-lit, a new brand of LED lighting that promises no compromises to the quality of light and ambiance in your home. In fact, they are so confident about their products that they give you an entire year to change your mind and get your money back!
Still on the subject of lighting, I came across these outdoor oil lamps from Norwegian company, Northern Lighting. Inspired by a field of tall these lamps are available as a table lamp, a floor lamp or a lawn light. So, for those who appreciate ‘living light’, this is a good and flexible solution.
Bethan Grey was exhibiting a stunning now collaboration with Mohamad Reza Shamsian, an Iranian artist renowned for merging traditional craft with modern, elegant and contemporary design to create a truly unique and timeless aesthetic. The result is truly beautiful – solid brass and paua shell inlays into coloured solid wood and maple veneers.
I was drawn to the texture and patterns in Cavalcanti’s range of contemporary woven rugs, made by hand using pure New Zealand wool. These flatweaves are very hardwearing and can withstand heavy traffic areas such as corridors and staircases, as well as making great loose lay rugs.
Floor_Story were exhibiting these stunning rugs made in Pakistan. The rugs are all hand woven in cotton and wool before being washed, dried and then embroidered with around half a million stitches.
My magpie eye picked up on the exquisite trays from Notre Monde! Their trays, mirrors and furniture have all been made using a mix of traditional techniques and global ideas, and each piece is one-of-a-kind.
Then, after a relaxed lunch enjoying the sunshine by the canal, it was off to The London Design Fair, featuring Tent, Superbrands and the British Craft Pavilion. This rabbit warren of a venue features a treasure trove of international exhibitors, designers and brands, and is always worth a look.
Kicking off on the international front I came across Canadian company Norquay Co. whose northern heritage and canoeist lifestyle has inspired their collection of artisan painted canoe paddles. These would be a fun piece of art to add to your walls.
Staying on the other side of the Atlantic is Bend Goods, a Los Angeles based design and manufacturing company. Bend make a range of products that are functional yet sculptural and playful.
Heading west from LA is Australian brand Totem Road, a sustainable furniture company, dedicated to bringing you on-trend, timeless pieces without any hidden costs to the environment. Their solid oak furniture combines contemporary mid-century design with Scandinavian influences to create pieces that are designed to last a lifetime.
Next up is Indian brand Syzygy, who were exhibiting their debut collection of solid brass & copper accessories. I love the contemporary form on these pieces!
I was particularly drawn to the colourful stand by Taxi Fabric, which started out as a project to turn Mumbai taxi seat covers into canvases, creating an outlet for artists to channel their talent as well as enhancing the everyday travel experience of thousands of people in that crowded city. I love the playful designs and bright colours of these fabrics!
3rd Culture’s stand also caught my eye for its colourful products. This Istanbul-based store showcases a collection of unique furniture, photography that is “Inspired by the World, Created in Istanbul”.
And finally, we’re back in the UK with these beautiful vessels from Forest + Found. This sustainable craft and design partnership places an emphasis on material and process, working with traditional craft methods to produce contemporary wooden objects and hand stitched textiles. From sourcing wood and dye plants in the forest, to each mark of the hand on an object, their work endeavours to tell a story.
So there you have it – my highlights from Design Junction and The London Design Fair. Does anything here catch your eye? I’d love to hear from you.
Image credits from respective companies.