I think Tent London was my favourite event at this year’s London Design Festival. The Truman Brewery is just the right balance of edgy and industrial, and functional; and on the beautiful day I visited was flooded with natural light. The exhibitors were a nice mix of new designers exhibiting for the first time and old favourites. I had a very nice day indeed.
Sian Elin was amongst those exhibiting for the first time, not just at Tent, but anywhere, which is very exciting! Her work is inspired by the built environment and by the time she’s spent in Israel, India and the Mediterranean.
Roben is a Franco-Austrian designer with a Masters in Industrial Design and this is his Crown Chair.
I like Rachel Powell‘s bold graphic prints – they always make you smile. I thought this ‘tractor pulling four robots’ (my name not hers!) print was particularly endearing.
Piers Saxby Candy was exactly the sort of enthusiastic young designer who makes me love my job! He makes or finds every element of his products himself, right down to the fixings. This light shade is cast in a vintage jelly mould and left intentionally unfinished. He originally intended to use the jelly moulds themselves, but wanted to take the idea one step further. I think it works really well – and I love the counter-weight too.
Mini Moderns are a Tent staple and it was great to see them on good form again this year. I love their Darjeeling Cushions in Tangerine Dream, and suspect they might be blazing a trail in a new colour combo – orange and grey is looking pretty good.
And excitingly they launched their Environmentally Responsible paint range – made from recycled paint! They are working with a company called Newlife Paints who rescue discarded paint from tips and dumps and have mixed it into a range of colours to perfectly complement Mini Moderns’ range of textiles and wallpaper designs. Genius!
This notebook by Kimu Design Studio appealed to my (somewhat silly) sense of humour. It’s designed for undetected people watching!
I thought the simple design of Katie Mawson‘s cushions was very appealing too. All her products are handmade from a garden studio in the Lake District and she hand felts every one for extra softness.
I have a poster pinned up above my desk. One of things it says is: “Be tired at the end of every day,” which pleases me, because I usually am. It’s been a constant inspiration since I picked it up from JAILmake‘s stand at perhaps the first Tent I ever came too, so it was very exciting to see them here again. I thought their stand design was brilliant – what better way to show people what you do, than to bring your entire studio (well, almost) to the show and carry on working. They assured me that the real studio is even more full of stuff than this one!
The ADAPTable seriously appealed to my geeky side. It’s made from American black walnut and has six interchangeable A4 panels, that contain things like a pen pot, a cutting mat and groves for keeping rubbers and pencil sharpeners in. Adjustable legs mean you can vary its height and a vintage style brass ruler clips on and off. I love it!
Made from solid ash, and fitted with a ceramic plate that can be designed to order, this little table by Design K is all about elevating the everyday to something special. Cup of tea anyone?!
And finally, Chloe Meineck‘s Music Memory Box is really something special. Co-designed with a lady called Barbara, who has dementia, each item represents a specific happy memory and plays a song associated with that memory when it’s placed into the middle of the box. Some of the items are even infused with scents to further aid memory recall.
Further reading for the especially geeky: