The London Design Festival has just closed its 15th year following the first event in 2003. Intended to celebrate and promote London as the design capital of the world, it brings together the best design minds in a myriad of fields.
Here are Decology‘s highlights from this year’s festival, to give you inspiration in your own interior design endeavours.
We love a bit of crystal and Swarovski’s collaboration with Tord Boontje over the last 15 years has certainly brought some incredible sparkle into homeware and lighting. Luminous Reflections, part of Design Frontiers at Somerset House showcased an inspiring collection of three crystal lighting components (Arc, Swirl, Circle) and four lighting designs (Luminous Bough, Lustrous Aura, Shimmering Jewel, Radiant Light) that have just been released under the newly revived Swarovski Crystal Palace. Despite their sparkle, they are all something you could actually imagine in your own space.
Compact living for urban dwellers
Urban Cabin by Mini Living was located in Oxo Tower Wharf. Created by architect Sam Jacob, MINI LIVING is a long-term research project that explores the future of urban habitats and is based on creative use of space through innovative design. The Urban Cabin, aside from being amazing to look at, is an ingenious module that reflects its environment (literally, it’s very shiny!). The concept is all about maximizing living space on a small urban footprint and at its centre, the most shared room at any party, the kitchen. A thought-provoking and inspiring installation for urban dwellers trying to make the most of their own particular postage stamp!
House of Wallpaper
An evolution of the tapestry, wallpaper has now been printed and hung in houses all over the world since 1700s. The prints and styles may go in and out of fashion, but there will always be a place for wallpaper in every home. This year, the UK’s largest wallpaper manufacturer, Graham & Brown teamed up with SHH Interior Design to transform a Soho townhouse into The House of Wallpaper, where every room showcased archive pieces, new collections, installations and innovations. If you’re quick, you can still see it until October 4.
Beauty meets utility
Have you ever thought that art should be more than just something beautiful? That in today’s world, maybe everything should have a purpose or a use? Including art. When two designers and two artists from Brazil met up in London, this was exactly what they ended up deciding. They conspired to create work that celebrates and promotes promotes the fusion of the beautiful and the useful – and so, Beautility was born. Beautility’s debut exhibition was held at the Brazilian Embassy and showcased their amazing designs for the home and office that give ‘a purpose for art that transcends beauty and a significance for utilitarian objects that sustains lifetimes of pleasure’.
As the movement for sustainable living grows, many designers are upcycling, re-purposing, recycling and using sustainable materials in their designs. But few can say they are actually growing the furniture they produce! Furniture designer and maker Sebastian Cox, whose studio and mill champions traditional woodwork and British woodlands, and design strategist Nilena Ivanova have collaborated on pieces of compostable, grown furniture, made using mycelium (fungus) and waste green (recently cut) wood. This incredible and beautifully tactile furniture was on show at Design Frontiers. It definitely gave us food for thought.
It’s a secret
citizenM’s garden installation at Bankside Design District’s hub was one of the most beautiful and calming spaces of the Design Festival. As part of its annual Secret Garden series, citizenM Bankside commissioned The Spaces in Between, a planted installation by Carly Rogers Flowers. This amazing space demonstrates how to bring greenery into your urban space, even if you have no actual “outside” to speak of.