Hello my name is Paul Smith @ the Design Museum


It might seem like I’m spending a lot of time in London, but it just happened to be a busy/lucky week! After visiting Lucy at the weekend I went back to visit fellow Lincoln GD grad Ben Willers – more about that in my next post!

Ben has just moved to London after randomly viewing a flat… and moving in the next week! He’d never been to the Design Museum and I knew the ‘Hello my name is Paul Smith’ exhibition had just opened because I’d seen quite a bit about it on instagram from Jo Mansfield (another Lincoln GD grad). Jo works at Aboud Creative, who have worked with the Paul Smith brand for 25 years and curated the exhibition. Any excuse to go to the Design Museum anyway as I hadn’t been to see an exhibition there since College… so we went:

Oh look, it’s me and my mate Paul Smith:

In the main area of the exhibition the walls were covered with frames of prints, photos and paintings which Paul has been inspired by/collected over the years. I loved this as I think it’s really interesting to see where designers get their inspiration from. There were some quite random things and I said to Ben: ‘Imagine how much space storing all of this would have taken up in his house!’. I love to keep everything too so if there’s ever an exhibition about me in the future there’ll be plenty to fill it with!

I’d only seen it online before, but I love this sketch:

A wall of buttons – it looked amazing! From textural to digital:

It was a bit trippy, but pretty atmospheric inside the room with walls made from TV screens!

I love seeing the studios and desks of creatives – how different people work is so interesting…

… and Paul definitely has a lot of stuff to show.

Some lovely design work in the shape of show invitations, collection catalogues and posters:

And lastly, a room full of Paul Smith collaborations. From Evian water bottles

… to a Mini – those famous stripes have been adapted for use on a range of products. (Ben was reading about the skis I think)

And then we ventured upstairs to the permanent Design Museum Collection:

It was a blast from the past with a lot of famous design items including chairs, lights and even a good Bic biro pen! And of course, the collection wouldn’t be complete without a typewriter:

There was also quite a big section dedicated to the British road signage system designed by Jock Kinneir and Margaret Calvert:

Thanks to my Uni CVP tutor, Ian, I’ll never forget those two names! I was just going to take a photo of possibly the biggest road sign in the world(?!) but persuaded Ben to take one of me next to it to show the scale:

It’s massive!

Lastly, I discovered these vases in the designers in residence section:


‘They’re just vases’? No, these are 3D printed vases. I know 3D printing is supposedly going to be the next big thing, but I was so impressed with these. HOW do you print ceramic!? HOW!? Amazing!

I really enjoyed all 3 exhibitions and would definitely recommend popping into the Design Museum if you’re in the area. ‘Hello my name is Paul Smith’ runs until 9th March 2014 so plenty of time for you to plan a visit! Or have you already been? What did you think? Let me know…


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  • Nikki

    25/11/2013 at 2:28 pm

    I haven’t been to the design museum, I really must go! This exhibitions looks great 🙂

    • graphiquefantastique

      25/11/2013 at 10:24 pm

      You should definitely go Nikki! My post only covers a fraction – there’s so much more to see 🙂 If you do go let me know what you think…

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© Natasha Nuttall | January 2022

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