the london design festival – 5 refined objects from tent london


Yesterday I introduced you to Shoreditch, the high-energy area in London hosting Tent London – one of many design/decoration fairs held during the London Design Festival.  More accurately, the fair is called Tent London & Superbrands London held in the old Truman Brewery now retrofitted to hold temporary exhibitions and showrooms.

This is the place to discover the newest in contemporary design from cutting-edge established brands, independent craftsmen and designers as well as undiscovered talents.  For 2013, the fair also hosted country design booths from Norway, Ireland, China, Taiwan, Japan, and Hungary.



1- Hungary was represented by Ivanka, makers of the FLASTER concrete floor and wall covering tiles that come in a variety of different sizes and patterns.  As the name suggests, they’re made of high performance concrete for indoors and out, domestic or public use. Oh my… the possibilities!



2- Cornwall’s very own, Henry Swanzy’s Orinoco bench is one of two pieces of contemporary furniture from the show that deserve 1st place. Made of Cornish oak and polished stainless steel, the wood is either scorched or bleached and would be a marvelous addition to any modern home. The craftsmanship is top-notch.



3- Another British designer, Spence Jenkins, showed this lovely bench (what is with me and benches!!!) made from green wood.  Like any living creature, the wood changes color with time.  The result is a creative sculpture that is functional to boot.  The bench is very different from the one above and lends a casual feel to a space.



4- These vessels from Copenhagen-based TORTUS were absolutely the best of the best in their category.  The studio has one goal – to produce vessels of timeless beauty and quality regardless of the time it takes to create them (hence how they got their name!) I actually regret not having bought some right then and there.  They’re simply enchanting.



5-  Last but not least, I include another beautiful bench, this time from the Taiwan booth that represented several designers.  I actually went to see this bench twice.  The first time, I sat on it and didn’t find it comfortable (but at the same time wasn’t uncomfortable). I immediately discarded it as unpractical.  But then I returned to see it again.  There is something there.  They’re really beautifully made, innovative and modern and show off the wood like few others do.  So I’m including it here because I can’t allow it to go unnoticed.

With the exception of a few items, this is not a place where I would normally shop for my clients or their interiors.  However fun and cool, many products still need some polishing.  But that’s just me – thankfully the market is not all about my aesthetic!  But regardless of this, Tent London was one of my two favorite venues during the London Design Fair.  Today I featured what I found of most interest and could drop right into one of my interiors.  Tomorrow I will talk about more fun, fresh and experimental design that caught my eye at Tent London.


image credits: the fair sign/Richard Rabel; all others, the respective designers.