Design Week 2018 - Top 5 Design Shows (the best bits!)

September is THE most exciting month in the design calendar as it brings a whole array of inspiring trade shows, installations and exhibitions to London. If you read my blog at the beginning of the year about events to look forward to (if not read it here!) you will know that I look forward to these events all year! Rather than bombard you with the 10 gazillion photographs I took over the month, I thought I would share my favourite bits with you. Believe me compiling this was not easy as I was lucky enough to visit so many talented suppliers and artists over so many fantastic shows. If you attended anything during design week, do let me know, would love to hear what your favourites were!

5. Ealing Beat

This is an event that sees all the local artists and craftspeople open their doors to the public to exhibit their works. It is an amazing opportunity to see some amazing talent while having a 121 meeting with the artists to understand their stories and inspirations.

Images taken at West London Art Factory

4. Focus Live

Held at the mecca of design, resident design houses at Design Centre at Chelsea Harbour, open their and give an insight into their brand and products. In addition there are fabulous talks from industry professionals, talking about forthcoming trends and issues faced by the interiors market.

It was a huge delight to see House of Hackneys pop up shop. Their products epitomise all the current trends for 18/19; textures, prints and patterns as well as being locally based in London.

house of hackney wares at their pop up shop

house of hackney wares at their pop up shop

3. Decorex

Syon Park showcases a fabulous array of suppliers, from lights to fabrics. I have been going to Decorex for a few years now, what I loved most about this year was their focus on craftsmanship. Artisans set up a mock workshop around the exhibition to give visitors an insight in how their products are created. It is so important to me, to support local trade people and artisans where possible in every project I undertake, so this was a huge highlight for me. One of the “makers” were Roast Designs, whos chandeliers are made from hand blown glass, so each one is completely unique, this is something better see in person, as photos simply do not do them justice! (

Some of the amazing artisans are pictured above Cocoon Home (Bottom left) who have the most beautiful printed fabrics, each designed by hugely talented artists. If you love prints you will love Angelas collection! ( Sarah Fotescue (bright pink background second from the bottom left) The ethos of the brand is to draw people's attention to the beauty and jewel-like colours of nature, and to create awareness of the preservation of our planet. ( .

I was so super excited to meet Lottie from Cold Harbour Lights who I have been crushing over on Instagram. Each lampshade is hand crafted by her and is just feathery fantasticness! (

2. Design Biennale

An opportunity to see design talent from all over the world, without leaving London! A bit of a diversion from interiors, this exhibition, helped to highlight design sensibilities around the globe. What are the key factors to consider in design? What impact is the design world able to make? How can we use design to improve the future? As you can guess sustainability was the buzz word and creating a secure for the next generation was a key component in many of the works.

As you can probably tell from the photographs, tactile materials, sensory displays and creative use of materials were at the heart of most of the exhibits. The world of design has power to make a big difference to the world, and it was great to be able to celebrate this on a worldwide platform.

1. 100% Design

Slightly more focused on the commercial market, 100% design has a more accessible and relaxed feel. The highlight here was a showcase for young new product designers dubbed 100% Fresh. There was an exciting mix on offer, but I felt there was definitely an emphasis on sustainable and recycled materials which was fantastic!

Loved the colour explosion and again there was a lot of emphasis on tactile materials (can you see a pattern?!) There were some super funky lighting designs on display which is obviously very exciting, but the one that really caught my eye was the “squishable” light you can pluck and hug!! I promise I am not making this up, the huggable light is the brain child from Guinea Pig and it is described as a multisensory mood maker (see photo -middle far right). It certainly lifted my mood!

I also got to meet another Instagram crush Divine Savages, their quirky designs always make me smile and the colours and patterns literally make my heart sing. It helps that Jamie and Tom are some of the loveliest people I met over the entire week. Blondie (3rd middle row) was the star of their stand and attracted a lot of attention. These boys are going to be huge in interior design and definitely ones to watch out for!

So there you have it folks, the best shows from design week right here on your phone and laptop, I got the sore feet so you didn’t have to. I would be lying if I said I didn’t love every minute!

Do let me know what you loved/hated? Any trends you see sticking or think are just a phase? I look forward to hearing from you!