London Design Festival - Decorex Highlights

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Decorex was the first interiors trade shows that I ever went to way back in the late 1990’s, so it has a special significance for me. However deep in my heart every year I hope that Decorex will move back to Chelsea or at least central London. It’s current home in Syon Park has been a small bugbear for me for some years now – Why? Because coming from Brighton is a nightmare by public transport and equally hellish by car.  Saying all that though I do come every year and usually find something new that makes up for the journey length and frustration.

This year there was plenty of choice of products to view from the 400+ exhibitors. It has always been the design show of choice for interior designers and decorators partly because the items on display in the most part are high end fabric, furniture and other decorative finishes. In recent years though there has been a growing number of younger and more contemporary companies showcasing their wares.  Future Heritage is my particular favourite sections curated by Corrine Julius, it highlights a small group of crafts people producing bespoke contemporary work in furniture design, glass, textiles, ceramics and lighting. The jesmonite work of Phil Cuttance particularly caught my eye.


A Rum Fellow was founded by Caroline Lindsell and Dylan OShea in 2014 who design collections of handwoven fabrics, rugs, and accessories. Working ethically through a network of weaving cooperatives they support highly skilled artisans and produce beautifully patterned, textured and colourful collections.  I first came across them at last years Decorex show and this year they launched the Sumal Collection. It’s a sophisticated chalky neutral palette with intricate patterns – a must for pattern lovers, as is their new rug created in collaboration with Floor Story. 

I’m a big fan of PINCH who make the kind of furniture that people enjoy living with. Their pieces celebrate the simplicity of form but they are not simplistic, they have detail and richness and are wonderfully thoughtful.  The Emil Dresser being a case in point (below). They also choose really interesting fabric choices for their upholstered pieces such as this Pendel sofa in the new Martyn Thompson Studio fabric the Accidental Expressionist. Absolutely beautiful.
Designer and hotelier Anouska Hempel has designed a series of architectural marble accessories for Stone specialist Lapicida. Launched at Decorex, the ultra thin pieces created in Thassos White and Infinity Black are incredibly striking and the plates and bowls are a feat of marble engineering to ensure their delicate nature.  

Spotted for the first time at Decorex was Naomi Paul whose award winning textile design studio specialises in lighting. Her collection uses fine double knit 100% Egyptian cotton which is hand crocheted by skilled craftswomen in London. Definitely striking and wonderfully colourful. 
As a lover of colour and pattern there was plenty to see at Decorex. Some of which was incredibly contemporary as seen at Margo SelbyBlackpop, Ottoline and Common Room. There was a lot of choice in the decorative accessories category at this years Decorex and some of the bowls and vases were truly beautiful especially those shown by Ooumm Paris and Ipek Kotan

Tom Raffield designs shout natural wood and nature. The natural environment that surrounds him in Cornwall inspires his sculptural pieces and each piece is hand-shaped by a form of steam bending to create bold and contemporary silhouettes.  Tom’s own home was featured in Grand Designs a couple of weeks ago and if you haven’t seen the episode I implore you to watch – it’s remarkable. 





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