Join me here in explorations of the places and people who inspire my passion for interiors. I’m always on the hunt for outstanding design, ancient, modern, natural and crafted.





March 19th, 2016


Top 5 picks from London Design Week 2016 – “Travel, colour, curiosities, orange and a lot of geometric”!

The winter has seemed particularly long and grey this year so it was with some welcome relief that I headed up to London Design Week to check out the new season Spring/Summer ranges. I wasn’t disappointed, being greeted by this colourful and highly inventive floral display by renowned florist Philippa Craddock, which picks up on the season’s geometric theme.

Eye-catching floral display by Philippa Craddock

Eye-catching floral display by Philippa Craddock

Five hours later I was happily trying to distil the mass of colour, pattern and products into some key themes; here are my top five picks:

Travel

I loved the simple new range of washed linens from Nobilis and how the colours (and even the way the fabrics were hung) reminded me of one of my favourite places, Portofino Harbour. See the similarities below with a recent holiday snap! There is a coordinating range of wallpapers (right), with a more luxurious feel contrasting against the linen.

New range of washed linens from Nobilis and a recent holiday snap of Portofino!

New range of washed linens from Nobilis and a recent holiday snap of Portofino!

Continuing the theme of travel and holiday snaps, I also spotted this new fabric from Manuel Canovas with a “Rooftops of Paris” theme (left), this time reminding me of the view that I can’t resist snapping (see below!) from the Musée D’Orsay in Paris. The range also includes this fun fashion themed design, Le Parisienne Noir et Blanc (right).

Two new fabrics from Manuel Canovas "Les Toits de Paris Ardoise" and "La Parisienne Noir/Blanc".

Two new fabrics from Manuel Canovas “Les Toits de Paris Ardoise” and “La Parisienne Noir/Blanc

Colour

Colour continues its strong comeback, this time in the form of orange, pink, zesty lime green and turquoise…

Colourful geometric rugs from Mahout, a newcomer to the Design Centre, alongside fabrics from Jim Thompson and Manuel Canovas

Colourful geometric rugs from Mahout, a newcomer to the Design Centre, alongside fabrics from Jim Thompson and Manuel Canovas

Curiosities

Below is another striking set of new designs from wallpaper specialists Cole & Son, as beautifully and cleverly presented as always. It’s called “Curio” and is a knock-out combination of malachite and gold, inspired by the “rarities and objets d’art of nature”. The geometric feel of the hexagonal Mineral design and sharp edged Quartz contrasts with  the botanical Seafern patterns and the softly marbled Zebrawood design.

The new "Curio" collection from wallpaper specialist Cole & Son

The new “Curio” collection from wallpaper specialist Cole & Son

Orange

“Orange” is huge this season. We like it best when used sparingly, preferably with teal or dark blue! I loved this design in the Fox Linton/Jim Thompson showroom for impact. It’s a lovely recreation of an 18th Century Chinese embroidery, the pattern is traditional but the colour combination is contemporary and lively.

 Broderique   Bonsai of the vanities /  Jim Thompson       An innovative recreation of an 18th Century Chinese embroidery. The pattern is traditional but the colour combination is contemporary and lively; the peonies positively burst forth in four vivacious colorways

Broderique, Bonsai of the vanities by Jim Thompson

Geometrics

Last, but not least, the popularity of geometric designs continues. For maximum impact there are many in monochrome tones, such as this new design by Thibaut, which is part of a colourful range of graphic patterns in both large and small scales.

New range of large and small scale geometrics by Thibaut

New range of large and small scale geometrics by Thibaut

October 1st, 2013


Top 5 trends at London Design Week

The last few weeks have been a whirlwind of trade shows including Maison et Objet, Decorex and Focus 2013. It has taken me several days to absorb everything and here are some key trends that I see leading the Interior Design world into Autumn/Winter 2013.

1. Taking inspiration from historical designs and styles

Last season the link between Fashion and Interior Design trends was extremely strong. This season many of the fabric and wallpaper houses have looked to the past for inspiration and reinterpreted historical designs with a contemporary spin.

My clear favourites were the new  “Historical Palaces” wallpaper collection by Cole & Son. As the name suggests the fourteen new designs take inspiration from The Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace, Banqueting House, Kensington Palace and Kew Palace.

Cole & Son Historic Palaces wallpaper

New “Historical Palaces” wallpaper collection from Cole & Son

In a similar vein Zoffany have based their new “Tespi” and “Curzon” collections on the “grandeur of Venice in bygone days”…

The new "Tespi" range from Zoffany based on historical Venice

The new “Tespi” range from Zoffany based on historical Venice

Zoffany

The new “Tespi” range from Zoffany based on historical Venice

2. Grey is here to stay (or is it?)

No one can dispute the current predominance of grey. Paint specialists Little Greene just unveiled their new range of colours at Decorex, twenty eight new shades of grey, and Farrow & Ball have also included five very useful shades of grey in their nine new colours for the Autumn.

The new "GREY" range from Little Greene

The new “GREY” range from paint specialists “Little Greene”

Nine new colours from paint specialists "Farrow & Ball".

Nine new colours from paint specialists “Farrow & Ball”.

New range of "grey-based" wallpapers from Nobilis

New range of “grey-based” wallpapers from Nobilis

However, with the grey British winter imminent, I was secretly relieved to read in Ben Pentreath’s influential blog that he is considering painting his dining room a very bright shade of purple/pink! – I quote “And even more controversially. Check out what I’m doing in the Dining Room. Guys – I’m bored of tasteful greys. THEY ARE OVER.”

Proposed new colour for Ben Pentreath's dining room - is grey here to stay?

Proposed new colour for Ben Pentreath’s dining room – is grey here to stay?

Here is an image of the colour and Ben is very influential so I’m intrigued to see if we will all be abandoning grey when I write again on the trends for Spring 2014…

3. Metals and metallics  – Bronze is the new Black

Trend number three has to be the re-emergence of metallic finishes, most noticeably in fabrics, lighting and also in ironmongery and bathroom design. In terms of the latter I was impressed by the new range from Samuel Heath. It’s called FUSION and literally allows you to combine two or more of their finishes (e.g. bronze and chrome) into a single door fitting. The bronze and chrome work very well together.

New "FUSION" range from Samuel Heath allowing customers to mix and match different finishes

New “FUSION” range from Samuel Heath allowing customers to mix and match different finishes

Samuel Heath

Selection of finishes from the new “FUSION” range from Samuel Heath which can be mixed and matched to make an interesting combination for door handles etc…

4. Pattern and colour are holding their own and technology is enabling some stunning results

Pattern and colour are still featuring strongly in many of the showrooms, although in a more restrained way than earlier in the year. Lewis & Wood won the Homes and Gardens “Best Printed Fabric” award for their boldly patterned “kimono” fabric.  I liked this new range from C&C Milano  as it enables you to introduce pattern and colour in  a fresh and subtle way that will not date.

"Kimono" by Lewis and Wood, winner of the "Homes & Gardens" Best Printed Fabric award

“Kimono” by Lewis and Wood, winner of the “Homes & Gardens” Best Printed Fabric award

Fresh new collection from C&C Milano

Fresh new collection from C&C Milano

In addition, modern technology and printing techniques have enabled fabric house Romo and artist Jessica Zoob to collaborate and transform her paintings into a collection of printed fabrics, wallcovering and cushions – the reproduction detail is excellent. I love these, will be buying some soon for my sofas!

New Jessica Zoob collection of fabrics, wallcoverings and accessories for Romo

New Jessica Zoob collection of fabrics, wallcoverings and accessories for Romo

New Jessica Zoob collection in conjunction with Romo

New Jessica Zoob collection in conjunction with Romo

5. Iconic and quirky designs with a retro/metro feel

Last, but not least, the ongoing need to differentiate with such a vast range of products on offer frequently leads to some clever and unique designs – “Velvets” by Kirby Design being a very good example this season.

"Velvets" by Kirby Design

“Velvets” by Kirby Design

To celebrate the 150th Anniversary of the London Underground, Kirby design collaborated with Transport for London to recreate five iconic designs originally used for seating fabric across the underground!  Whether or not you want to be reminded of the London Underground in your home, the end result is both eye-catching and original.

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