LDF 2014 | Central | Blog 2 of 3

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Moving across the city centre now (which some might still call west), where there were some of the main LDF14 events alongside little pop-ups. Here is my top 20. Every year there design festival Landmark projects; I’m sure most people will remember the Tom Dixon EPS chair giveaway in 2006. This year Airbnb had set up residence along with the help from 4 design collaborations: Patternity, Jasper Morrison and StudioLSE.

1 -Trafalgar squareA place called home

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (19)
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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (8)

Above is Raw-Edges home, as you can see by the image the walls slide, so you can shrink and expand the spaces. Playful and ingenious…my flat could do with these!

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central copy

Next was the geometric and kaleidoscopic Patternity home. I loved the interactive element, so the visitor can actually create new patterns. As you can see I was also chuffed to have inadvertantly coordinated with this instillation!

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (20)

The Pigeon fanciers home by Jasper Morrison was pared down, with a witty nod to its location; being surrounded by plenty of pigeons!

2 - Dinner with the designers

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (2)
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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (1)

One of my highlights was the Heal'sDinner with the Designers. For the second year running Heal's invited its nearest and dearest from the design community from designers they work with to journalists and influencers in the design industry, with special guests Philippe and Jasmine Starck. I'm privileged to be part of the Heal's team and loved talking to guest about the new Collections that have been recently launched for AW14 and also the new brand TOG which had its exclusive UK debut on the same day.

The dinner was lovely too!

3 – Aram Gallery

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (22)
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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (23)

Zeev Aram's opinion behind his stores is that any space can be dedicated to an established designer product along side a pieces from a college graduate. The Aram Gallery space was occupied by their Future Stars? exhibit. Many of the pieces had a geometric theme; Kim Thome's Light Array uses flour cent tubes in the already existing space. 

In the above screen Kim uses diffusion lighting gels - usually used for stage lighting.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (27)

Maria Jeglinska's Drawn objects; Her patterns and motifs are hand painted and scale gives them an almost tribal feel.

4 – 19 Greek Street

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (26)

19 Greek Streets key ethos is Design, artistry and sustainability, which creates a fascinating curated space. The work inside the 3 floor converted building freely crosses over from, product, craft to art.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (13)

Above is Vino mirror by Ilna Vuorivirta; where the two mirrors are slightly angled so the person looking in the mirror can see them selves but also the environment their occupying.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (15)

I love the painterly effect  of the above Meltin Pot Table by Dirk Van Der Koij. Which is actually made from all the castoffs and left overs of thermoplastic from his other products.

5 – Wiki House 

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (28)

Wiki house is an open sourced non profit organisation  -   so you can actually download, amends, print/cut and build with no construction skills! They did exactly this for LDF just by Tottenham Court Road and was totally complete in 9 days.

6 – Hay pop up

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (7) 2

The Danish Brand HAY , had the ultimate 'pop-up' space for LDF, prime trading location on the home floor of Selfridges. Setting up they Mini Market populated with Hay and Wrong for Hay products.

Designjunction

Designjunction has now firmly established itself as an essential stop (for several hours) during the London Design Festival, appearing to get bigger every year with an increasing amount of established and up and coming brand clambering for space.

7 – Dezeen and Mini Frontiers. 6 cutting edge designers were tasked with presenting their visions for the future of mobility.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (16)

The Little jelly like cars are Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg creation of a vehicle ecosystem.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (3)

Lucy McRae, created an amazing instillation which included dance, gymnastics, audience participation and allot of silver foil! The silver materials is actually what they use for emergency blankets, the work is based on research by NASA using pressured space suits. Not highly flattering, but surprisingly relaxing if you were lucky enough to have a go.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (9) 2

Dominic Wilcox created an entire driverless sleeper, stained glass car. I think this is the only way you can look up at the stars and they appear more beautiful.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (5) 2
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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (25)

8 – Flash Factories - Live workshops - were visitors can see industrial and hand made production of items from upholstery, to tiles to cut crystal, which are processes usually behind closed factory doors. Above are concrete geometric tiles being hand made by Bert & May and also upholstery by the Norfolk based Coakley and Cox...here there just finishing off one of my designs; the Cocoon Chair for Heal's.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (4)

9 – Dead GoodI spotted their Naked Chair by Gala Wright and Magnus Long, simple contours and very comfortable.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (6)

10 – Bethan Gray for Workhouse.Workhouses aesthetic is British style and here with their new Ella Sofa Collection; part of  a modern take on the traditional chesterfield.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (10)

11 – Ajoto. One for the Christmas list.Made from one pieces of metal rod (from aluminium to brass) the simple design still feels like luxury, especially the brass versions as they're so weighty - lovely!

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (11) 2

12 - Vitamin. Vitamin had been very busy this year, with several nee items launched at Designjunction. My favourite items were the turned wooden pots with smart shaped lids.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (12)

13 – AMMA Studio. Is a collaboration between interior designer Samuel Amoia and artist Fernando Mastrangelo. There have created these amazing Drum stools, in some beautiful colour combinations. Their organic shapes and textures almost are reminiscent of Nastional Geographic aerial shots of the earth.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (14)

14 –Umut Yamac.Above his Perch light. Made from folded paper and brass; the pivoting brass claws complete the circuit and the light illuminates. This pivot pint also means the light can delicately sway or perch.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (17)

15 – One We made Earlier. Within the shop section of Designjunction were these great chunky necklaces...but which one to buy?!

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (18)

16 – Daniel and Emma. I spotted this Auzzie pairs work back in 2010 at 100% Design with their stationary collection. They've now increased there collection in volume and scale; introducing they Mish Mash chairs hand made in Adelaide.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (21)

17 - A Childs Dreaminstillation and charity auction. 19 designers have personalised iconic design pieces from the Ercol stacking chair to Anglepoise lights. At the end of Designjucntion the items were all being auctioned off with proceeds going to aid further research into SIDS, Stillborn and Neonatal Death Syndrome and support grieving families.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (29)

18 – Rhian Malin Ceramics. Apologies for the blurry image - above are the Hand Held Vessels range, thrown porcelain which has then been gently manipulated into shape, to fit the users hand; making each one unique.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (30)

19 – Kaymet. I have been a fan of Kaymets trays and trolleys for quite some time; even being able to vitas their humble factory in East London (blog to come). They have been and making anodised aluminium ware in London since 1947, and even though the designs haven't changed hugely, they would still fit nicely in any home; which a huge range of colours and finishes.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF14_Central (31)

20 - General Cafe Stop.2014 is the Year of the Bus,  funded by Modus, designed by Michael Sodeau. The benches upholstered in a TFL fabric by Kirkby Design were a welcome opportunity to rest my already aching feet!

With time running out the next phase of my LDF adventure was East.

London Design Festival 2012, Part 2 of 3.

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Part 2 of 3: 100% Design and Designjunction.

100% design has always been one of the largest exhibitions that is part of LDF, but in past years the curation has waned and so has the visitor enthusiasm. This year Media 10 have taken over the reigns and injected some much needed Brand and creative influence.
With large established brands, commercial brands and emerging brands exhibiting along side each other. It is still a trade fair at Earls Court; but has begun to move in the right direction.
This year there were zones split into Office, Kitchen and bathroom, Eco, design and build, International pavilions, Interiors. I always gravitate towards the latter two, as that is where you see more inspiration and new trends.

Button, Bright colours and fun.

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The mini London world of Clerkenwell Design Week.

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Dare Studio have been very bust over the last year, with new products: Bronte upholstered chair, Maya desk, and spine chair. I really like the round low proportions of the Bronte.

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I wish I’d had the time but there were some great seminars at 100% throughout the day. The auditorium was designed by Paul Cocksedge.

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James Harrison Design stand increases in size and stature year after year, new products including the Norton Chair and Holton tables.

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As well as a press area, Knoll had the foresight to add in a Bloggers lounge; there should be even more, with free biscuits.

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Mark Furniture always have a strong presence, this year launching the Milly Stool . Contrasting buttons are still a really big trend this year, but I liked how Mark had used painted wood, so you could still see the grain, and clustered the buttons together.

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF12_100percent (10)

Plant and Moss are going from strength to strength after their recently newly launched  Bisley sofas for Heals Discovers 2012.

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There Akita Desk Range uses all the 2012/13 trends, concrete, brass, copper and wood.

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Mercedes-Benz exhibited one of their concept car; I was more interested in the stand than the car.

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For Fair weary passers by Ola Mireka and friend, were supplying free glasses of home made lemonade...Lava Lemonade; in resin cups. 

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Designjunction:

Designjunction looked amazing this year, and for me blew all other competing shows out of the water. It may not have been the biggest (yet), but from what I saw I certainly had a lot of the brightest companies and design brands. A real step up from the first show in Milan 2011 where Modus launched my Drew range.

Unfortunately I wasn’t able to visit the fair during the day, just for the evening events, so spent most of the time catching up with friends and creative acquaintances I haven't seen since before my adventures to China.

This year it was located in the Old Royal Mail Sorting office on New Oxford street, and for a derelict building, they did a great job at transforming it into an exclusive design venue.

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… and exclusive it certainly felt; the queue for the launch night was as far as they eye could see, thankfully I had a man on the inside to let me in!

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Kirsty Whyte_LDF12_Design Junction  (1)

Innermost had a gravity defying stand exhibiting new products, like Portland by James Bartlett.

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Desktop Empires, by Colin Wilson

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Designers in Residence exhibited tools of everyday life, the use of materials and craftsmanship was really tangible. Modeling tools for Swann Morton, by David Irwin was my absolute favorite piece, a teeny wood plane; small but perfectly formed.

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FAO

Fashion Art Object a brand new online shop launched for LDF12. Which sells carefully curated selection of high-end fashion accessories, art and objects, from international design brands and individual creative talents. Its my ideal shop as is sells from brands/designers I already know as well as introducing me to new ones.

Highly recommended for finding the perfect gift for design/style savvie loved ones and friends…or yourself!

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So tempted to buy one of Elin Green’s pieces, I’ve loved them since I spotted them at New Designers 2011.

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I’m also hoping if I’m a very good girl Father Christmas might leave me one of these divine bags by Bracher Emden.

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Simon Hasan , this time mixing leather and glass, in amore tailored way that with previous projects.

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Very Good and Proper had a big stand with some eyecatching lighting. (more brass and copper).

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Then the evening was over, such a shame I didn’t get to walk around the other floors. Daily Tonic were much more organised than me I click here to view their photos.