Scene @ Clerkenwell Design Week

By Peter Harris.

At the end of May, I managed to get over to Clerkenwell to see what was new at Design Week. There were lots of excellent returns from last year, but here are a few new makers and products that did stand out for us this time around.

Laszlo Tompa, Cube Illusion 12. Image courtesy of Laszlo Tompa

I really liked the wood products by Laszlo Tompa, and in particular, the little circular storage box that is like a magic trick when the compartments unwind. His lights–made from beautifully turned wood–were gorgeous as well. (We’re also loving his ceramic tiles.)

Cork Love, image courtesy of Colour Design Concept

Now that wine bottles feature screwtops and non-cork corks, the clever Portuguese are exploring other ways to use eco-friendly cork. The handmade Cork Love collection is built with old newspapers that are rolled and wrapped in agglomerate cork and old bicycle rims, creating sustainable and durable objects.

Toby Saunders Lamps image courtesy of Toby Saunders

Talented Toby Saunders designs bespoke lightshades that produce an interesting
visual effect as you walk around them.

Design Week also had a great line up of speakers this year and two sessions in particular were of note.

The first was by Ellen MacArthur (the inspirational round the world sailor) who is now an evangelist for the circular economy, which takes a systems approach to the economy and to consumption. Very compelling.

The second talk was by philosopher/designer Wayne Hemingway (of famed fashion label Red or Dead and so much more) sorting through the trends of up cycling, vintage, used and more. Vintage is more than a fad, it’s about timeless design…and is a way of life here in Austerity Britain!

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