Well, that’s it; looks like London Design Festival is finished for another year, sob. You might’ve seen on my Instagram that I was quite busy trying to squeeze in as many LDF exhibitions and events as I could and now, if I’m honest, I’m exhausted. Is it possible that I’m all design-ed out!?
You might remember my LDF 17 guide from the other week? Hopefully that helped you to choose a handful of the best things to see, but just incase you didn’t manage to hot foot it around London I wanted to share a little insight of how I spent my week including my favourite visual discoveries, of course.
I should also mention that I did film quite a lot of footage for a vlog on my Youtube channel but I didn’t quite get around to editing that yet… but soon!
Friday: LDF Press Preview
My LDF 2017 started early (8.30am kinda early) at the V&A with a press preview. I honestly felt so lucky to be seeing the Landmark Projects before anyone else, although surrounded by lots of serious professional journos I tried to keep my cool.
So, what did I think? Reflection Room by Flynn Talbot was as beautiful as the hype – the orange/blue lighting and atmosphere was quite hard to capture but I’m glad that I got to experience it whilst it was quiet. I saw some photos posted through out the week where it looked pretty crowded.
During the press preview we also visited Villa Walala by Camille Walala – a burst of Memphis hidden amongst the office blocks at Broadgate near Liverpool Street. As a fan of Camille’s pattern and colour combinations, I was so excited to see this project in real life. Emma & I spent 2 hours chilling here; eating a yummy lunch by Yolk, admiring the inflatable villa and trying to get the perfect Instagram shot of that amazing floor, obvs. I can’t wait to see what Camille does next – there seems to be nothing she can’t turn her pattern hand to!
Tuesday: Yinka Ilori: Playground at Citizen M
The sun was shining in Shoreditch so I headed to see Yinka’s playground – the best looking playground I’ve ever seen. I also popped to see Lee Broom’s clever installation – it was definitely all about the experience, and not one that could be explained via photos.
SMUG, Islington Design District
In the evening I met up with Rosh, Emma and Cate to celebrate the launch of ‘How to curate your life’ – a podcast by Lizzie Evans of SMUG. Have a listen! We snapped away at Lizzie’s Plant Pot collaboration project, painted some plant pots of our own and admired all of the lovely things in the shop. If you’ve never been to SMUG it’s definitely worth the trip to Islington, I promise.
Ok I’ll admit that by Thursday I was starting to feel quite tired, but I headed to designjunction early for the press breakfast. On Wednesday evening I’d been enjoying quite a bit of prosecco at the V&A for the Made.com Talent Lab party (not pictured), so coffee was essential and thankfully Rosh & I arrived in the press lounge just before a mad crowd of journos swooped the last of the croissants.
designjunction has quite a heavy interior focus, but I like to browse the patterns, shapes and colour palettes being used and preview the upcoming trends. Plus, I can appreciate a beautiful lamp or two if I have to ha.
I loved the wallpaper in the press lounge courtesy of Eley Kishimoto x Kirkby Design as well as the chevron rug by Deadgood – monochrome magic! Other highlights included Bethan Gray and Eleanor Pritchard.
One of the main attractions at designjunction this year was the Gateways installation by Adam Nathaniel Furman and Turkish Ceramics. I’m sure I don’t need to explain why it was amazing, as the photos speak for themselves! It was a brilliant feature in Granary Square, catching the attention of visitors young and old. I managed to get a photo with the arches quite easily but I heard that at one point there was a 20 minute wait. That’s what tiles do to people I guess!
The Canopy is the shopping destination at designjunction, housing some amazing homeware and lifestyle accessories. It was lovely to see some familiar faces (Moxon, One we made earlier & Marby and Elm) and stumble across some new ones including Sena Gu and One Eight Nine Five (pictured above).
London Design Fair
A few hours and an Honest burger later, I headed to the London Design Fair press preview to avoid the crowds. Held inside the Truman Brewery (one of my favourite venues in London), it is the literal definition of a design maze: never ending floors and rooms of designers and makers. Just when you think you’ve seen it all, you turn a corner & find more stands. At around 7pm I was pretty exhausted and at the point where I couldn’t soak in any more design for the day, however I did manage to stumble across a few gems!
I mean, just look at this beautiful mirror by Bower. I never do the mirror shot, but just felt like I HAD to when a mirror looks this good:
Friday: designjunction x Culture Trip
On Friday I was back at designjunction for a little get together with some other bloggers thanks to Culture Trip. After a super healthy lunch in a super fancy lunchbox by Prepd, we talked photography with Beth Davis (photographer for LED lighting brand Tala) and experimenting with light.
We popped along to the Custhom x 2 Lovely Gays printing studio to get our hands messy/ admire their floral wallpaper featuring a turquoise that is pretty much Mars Green – y’know, the world’s favourite colour as researched by GF Smith.
After all of that hard work, we ended our tour on the Campari boat which I’d already visited on Monday for a workshop – no complaints from me! The weather was beautiful, the cocktails were flowing and we also had an Italian on hand to tell us a bit about the history of Campari, where the cocktails originated and most importantly, how to make them. Paolo was brilliant – what a great guy.
We stayed aboard for a talk from Eley Kishimoto, the pair behind the striking typographic installation alongside the Campari boat. P.S. Sommer from House Curious says cheers to the weekend!
Saturday: Brixton Design Trail
But LDF didn’t stop there for me, as I had plans to head down to Brixton with Emma, Rosh and Gaby on Saturday. We started at the recently renovated The Department Store, housing the Crafty Fox market, an amazing balloon shop window and beautiful patterned rugs by local design duo Eley Kishimoto. The Department Store is a beautiful building with an amazing rooftop, preserved original features and a quirky cafe/restaurant on the ground floor, but I’m not fully convinced on it’s relevance. It feels too polished and alien compared to the local area in my opinion, but does house an Architect firm so I’m not overly surprised.
As per usual, the markets in Brixton were vibrant and bursting with pattern; we spotted the Untranslation flags by Sam Furness however couldn’t spot the Paper Trail paste ups by Debora Bowness which I’d been looking forward to. Our adventures in Brixton were cut short after some local boys starting pelting us with stones… yep.
Not wanting to admit defeat, Rosh & I headed to South Kensington after a recommendation from Emma:
Peter Pilotto Townhouse
Just across the road from the V&A, we walked into the Peter Pilotto house and instantly fell in love. Who knew that behind the white facade stood a house of colour clashing and fashion? From the walls and carpets to the chairs and hangers, everything was just beautiful.
We spent probably far too long just inhaling all of the colour, and maybe too much colour is actually a thing because we witnessed a girl knock a plate off the wall – eeek! Smashing. Oh and apparently the Peter Pilotto house is open for a bit longer so you can visit until 13th October, YAY!
It was the perfect way to end our LDF 2017 experience if you ask me, and I’m pretty sure that Rosh would agree! I hope you enjoyed that little round up of my LDF week and don’t forget that I’ll have a vlog ready soon.
Did you manage to see some of the LDF excitement? If yes, what were your highlights? If you didn’t join in this year then put it in your diary for 2018 because it’ll be here before we know it…