I haven’t been to the East London Design Show for a long time, not since before I was writing this blog, so I thought it was high time I paid them another visit. Pitched as the alternative department store, it’s a great place to pick up Christmas gifts direct from independent designers and makers. Here are my top picks…
I’ve known Zeena Shah for a while now and interviewed her for the blog back in May. Her brand of optimistic printed textiles is going from strength to strength and she even recently appeared on Kirstie’s Vintage Home, not once, but twice!
Her gorgeous tape was flying off the shelves, and I love the grey and white Scandi-style lavender hearts!
offkut produces these fabulous lighting products from reclaimed industrial wood, like railway sleepers or pier pilings, and carbon filament reproduction bulbs. I love the contrast of the urban materials and the warmth of the light.
All their products are handmade in a workshop in London and their ethos is “Durable, beautiful, ethical, affordable. Design as it should be.” How can you argue with that?!
I’m a sucker for a nice bit of stationery so Lollipop Designs had me at hello. I especially loved the brown paper Christmas tape, and so did everyone else judging by how fast it was flying off the stand!
More lovely stationery from Katy & June who import their quirky goods from Korea bringing the stationery-obsessed among us Brits an irresistible selection. I loved the thin wide notebook designed to sit along the bottom of your keyboard for quick notes, and the vintage style wind-up pencil sharpener.
I loved these grey bags from Dowse with a choice of yellow, blue or orange handles – such intense colours. I told Susannah I was obsessed with grey, yellow and blue, and she laughed and said I was her perfect customer. I think she might be right!
And last but not least, HAM. I met the very lovely Jo at Pulse in May and have been a huge fan of her work ever since. The contradiction between the charming content of her images and their restrained execution is utterly compelling. I’m very excited to see what she’s got planned for 2013 – she’s definitely one to keep an eye on. (And of course, Jo is one of the mentors for the confessions of a design geek bursary.)
Further reading for the especially geeky: