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Design of the Day – Retro’s back and it’s all gone Swiss

Today’s Design of the Day is definitely one for those who like their designs sleek and minimal! The ePure digital telephone by Swissvoice, is the perfect modern accessory for any techi savvy home. As well as looking pretty darn smooth, this bad boy is completely wireless with a range of up to 300 metres and stores 100 numbers.

You can choose from crisp white or sexy black and for only £70 from John Lewis,  it wont burn a hole in your pocket! Champagne all round!

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Design of the Day – Pantone bag for life

 

Strut your stuff and look the bees knees with one of Pantone‘s trendy shoulder bags. Made from cotton and hiding a zipped pouch for your pennies, the bags are available in three of colours exclusive to Pantone.

You can pick one up from www.illustratedliving.co.uk for under £30 and also choose from a range of matching purses.

 

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A treasure trove of design gems at New Designers 2011

Well I’ve made it back from the New Designers Show 2011 part 2 which is being held in London’s Business  Design Centre, feeling shattered after two whole days of intense interviews and general press duties – but well worth it! I’ve come away totally inspired and have huge admiration for design students everywhere.

The level of work was exceptional, from furniture to textiles and product designs to Interiors, if I was a robot I’d definitely have a design overload!

Firstly I’d like to say CONGRATULATIONS to all the New Designers 2011 winners, they’ve worked so hard to gain recognition from the UK’s freshest student design event and of course their peers.

Here are some of my favourites and the names of the other winners can be found on the New Designers Website.

Luke Diaz Habitat Innovation Winner - Bucks New University

Judges thoughts: “We admired his innovative construction and use of material. We enjoyed his overall charm, warmth and character. The low storage with woven sliding doors is a product with soul.”

Oksana Akishyna - Interior Design Association Winner AIU London

Judges thoughts: “Oksana’s portfolio showed refreshing clarity and at times mesmerising presentation that was refined and at a professional standard.”

Northumbria University - Best Stand Award

Judges thoughts: “Northumbria have a huge variety of inspirational products on display. The graduates have made clever use of recycled materials-creating a highly polished and professional presentation.”

Brinley Clark - Business Designer of the Year winner University of Hertfordshire

Judges thoughts: “Brinley has got design in his bones. Passionate, inspiring and intelligent, with a wicked  streak of humour. His pigeon project is ‘shit’ – go and find out more!”

The event was split into three floors and then sub divided into specific design sections so it was easy to make your way around. Although, it wasn’t easy walking around each section without stopping to look every few steps and swooning over another fantastic design.

The One Year On section, curated by award winning designer Jethro Macey, showcased 50 specially selected designers who’ve set up a business in the last 12 months. In this wonderful room, I came across Imogen Heath who launched her first ever collection at the show. Her mid-century patterned wallpaper and fabrics instantly dragged me in. Imogen was just as colourful and sweet as her designs which are inspired by her love of geometric composition, art deco and contemporary art.

If you’re just as head over heals in love with Imogen’s designs as I am, you can bag a cushion from £48 – £55 and wallpaper for £100

As I  was interviewing Imogen, just opposite us a group of talented artists and illustrators under the name of Secret Wars, were doing a live graffiti demonstration on their white stand. Their creative flair attracted the attention of lots of visitors who stared in amazement at how effortlessly they drew – I couldn’t take my eyes off them!

After, finally pulling myself away from the One Year On section, I had a good gander on the first floor and came across a product which The Design Hub had already featured as a Design of the Day – the Tweetingseat. Created by Product Designer Chris McNicholl, who’s recently graduated from the University of Dundee in Product Design, the Tweetingseat has caused a huge stir.

The seat takes reality and combines it with the virtual world by taking pictures of anyone sat on the seat and uploading the image to a live Twitter feed. This is done by one camera in the shape of the blue Twitter bird which can be mounted above the seat and another camera inside the seat that takes an image of anyone standing in front. So in the end you get two images uploaded to Twitter – genius!

Chris McNicholl speaking to Kellie Hill

As well as the tweeting seat causing a buzz with social media lovers, some feel this idea of sharing images on Twitter of people unaware they have been papped is unethical. When asked, Chris told me he welcomes the debate and encourages it. Listen to Chris’ interview!

Innovative furniture makers

The level of talent and skill shown by the students at New Designers was breathtaking and one designer rom Plymouth University certainly took the biscuit. Michael Carroll had created a chair without using glue or nails.

Named “Tankard“, this chair is held together with…. well you’ll have to watch his interview to find out!

The young furniture maker also made a table using metal bars which resemble the shape of a mouse trap.

Another talented chap, Luke Diaz from Bucks New University, won the New Designers 2011 Habitat Innovation Award for his Eco cabinet that he bound together with hemp twine. Like Micheal Carroll above,  he didn’t use a single nail or drop of glue. I see a trend developing here!

Diaz taught himself how to weave the twine and create the doors of the cabinet, which I think make it look beautifully organic and earthly. He also designed two stools, a smaller cabinet and hanging stand to complete his sustainable furniture range.

Interiors

We’ve all had to live in a boxy apartment or a ground floor flat that resembles a dungeon (like myself) when starting out on the career ladder.  Having to cook, sleep and shower in the same room is something which the majority of yuppie’s (young professionals) put up with until the day comes and a promotion lands on the table.

And if you’re like me and LOVE to decorate but also rent, it’s fair to say that the landlord wouldn’t be too happy at the next inspection to find two walls knocked out and the living room changed into a bedroom. Renting makes it near impossible to flex those creative fingers.

Well, I met young innovative Interior Designer, Henry Parker at New Designers 2011 and he has come to the rescue with a city apartment perfect for the hard-working yuppie’s, that want to make their flat into a home.

Adaptaflat is an apartment which is flexible, moveable and totally brilliant! These living spaces are the same size as a two bedroom flat but have maneuverable walls. Yes, you heard right, you can move the walls  in the apartment to suit your needs, lifestyle or make space for Saturday night’s party. Somebody PLEASE commission this!

How does it work? There are a series of custom made tracks on the ceiling of the apartment which the walls are connected to and this allows them to be moved in the desired place and clamped down when positioned. Want one? Then listen to Henry Parker’s interview with The Design Hub and learn more about this clever design or click HERE to go to his website.

 
 
 
 
 
Images: New Designers 2011, Imogen Heath, Kellie Hill

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Filed under Chris McNicholl, courses, distance learning, Eco-friendly, higher education, Home Acessories, Interviews, Kitchen Interiors, lighting, Living room Interiors, modern design, new career, New Designers 2011, News, Quirky, sustainable interiors, upholstery

Design of the Day – Watch out Dyson’s about!

This baby nearly made me jump out of my skin when I walked past it in a shop the other day. I thought it was just a weird looking light or stand, but as I brushed passed a huge gust of wind hit my face, “it’s a fan!” I screamed. Yes, Dyson have done it again and surprised us with another technological masterpiece and created a bladeless fan.

As the Dyson new age fan uses Air multiplier technology which means the blades dont chop the air before it hits you, the breeze is smoother and I can tell you a lot more powerful! The fans come in a range of sizes, colours and shapes so you can have one to suit your desk, bedroom or a board room if you’re fancy. They range from £200 – £300 and come with a 2 year guarantee, some stores don’t stock the whole range so I’d check before heading down to your local.

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Design of the Day – Meet Annie the chair, previous occupation – A shopping trolley

Today’s Design of the Day is one which will make you smile and think “what a crazy idea yet so perfect!”. Contemporary Eco design studio Reestore takes random objects like aeroplane wings, wheel barrows and shopping trolleys, then turns them into beautifully stylish pieces of furniture – another fantastic approach to sustainable interiors.

Designer and Managing Director of  Reestore, Max McMurdo, first made head way with his products when he pitched to the terrifying Dragon’s Den panel in series 5 of the show. He managed to impress the fierce Deborah Meaden and business genius Theo Paphitis, who invested in the company.

I’ve chosen Max’s “Annie” chair which in a previous life was a shopping trolley. It’s just fascinating how this symbol of the scrap yard can be totally transformed in to a perfectly functional chair. It takes 4 – 6 weeks to be delivered and will set you back £550.

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Filed under Bedroom Interiors, Eco-friendly, Living room Interiors, modern design, News, Quirky, Reestore, Soft Furnishings, sustainable interiors, Up-cycling

Want to get the most out of your Interior Design course? Check out these top tips to springboard you to success.

Former student and Interior Designer Karen Lane has created a list of her most important tips that students should do to ensure they get the best out of their Interior Design course and create a secure foundation to springboard them to a successful career.

Check them out and let us know if you have any more to add to the list. Continue reading

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Filed under BA in Interior Design, courses, diploma, distance learning, help & support, higher education, home study, News, The National Design Academy, www.nda.ac.uk

Design of the Day – Inject some life into a room with these funky 3D cushions

Rebecca Barton’s cushions instantly caught my eye with their bright array of colours and 3D like designs. What’s even more attractive about Rebecca’s pieces is they’re all bespoke and made to order from a small studio in Kent, using fabrics based in England and based on a strong ethical ethos.You can even specify colours, size and delivery time if you wish!

All the cushions are made from quality natural materials such as linen, silk, wool felt and cotton. There are different styles that you can choose from (which would look fab in any room),  from contemporary and floral, to plain and wood grain, you’re spoiled for choice.

As a mum of three I don’t know how she fits in the time to create such wonderful cushions. If you’re as much in love with Rebecca’s designs as I am, you can order from her website www.cushlab.co.uk or through Brighton POD, (which I’m addicted too!)

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Design of the Day – Striking prints from Laura Olivia

Good morning folks! I hope your weekend was fabulous and you got up all sorts of design delights! Today’s Design of the Day is from freelance textile and surface designer Laura Olivia. A colleague passed her brochure onto me and I was amazed with her brightly coloured designs and feminine prints. These pieces would really lift the mood of a room and add a tranquil and soothing atmosphere, especially in the bathroom or bedroom.

A former tutor at the National Design Academy in Nottingham, Laura now works for herself and supplies these beautiful bespoke designs internationally as well as a personal service in the UK. Her home range includes striking lampshades, wallpaper, cushions made from luxury fabrics and art work. Laura has also been chosen by Jethro Macy to exhibit at this years “One Year on” event at the New Designers Show in July.

Each piece of wallpaper is digitally printed on pearlescent paper and will cost you £179. Cushions and lampshades start from £65 and fabrics £50. Check Laura’s whole collection online and visit www.lauraolivia.com

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Design of the day – Disguise your iPad with a cool undercover case

For anyone who is remotely like me when it comes to protecting your valuables, you’ll already be in the habit of zipping up your pockets and bags or watching for possible thief’s eyeing up your new MP3 player. Well, this invention designed by Tobias Wong and Chelsea Briganti, will be right up your street.

The Undercover iPad case looks to other people, just like an ordinary envelope, but in fact it hides your iPad from sight. Instead of showing off your shiny new toy to passers by, you can go about your daily business having fun with your iPad knowing that it’s cleverly disguised. I can’t find a price for the gadget so if anyone knows – give me a holla!

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Be quick submit your entry for the Design Awards 2011 before June

It’s your time to shine and show off that creative flair you’ve got! Entries for The Design Awards are flowing thick and fast so if you fancy your chances and want your design to be crowned Design of the Year, get those creative juices flowing and submit before it’s too late!

Organised by the publishers of  Designer magazine, the award scheme is supported by over 30 UK suppliers (including Siemens, SMEG and Candy) and celebrates innovative design across the home.  The competition categories include:

  1. Kitchen Design of the Year
  2. Bathroom Design of the Year
  3. Living Space Design of the Year
  4. Sustainable Design accolade Award for the best environmentally friendly design

The 2010 winner for Kitchen Design of the Year (over 25k) was  Ainhoa Bilbao, Bulthaup Mayfair and for under 25k Kieron Bell, Kitchens International. Joe Burns & Geraldine Maurice, Oliver Burns Interiors were the winners of the bathroom of the Year Design and Paul McAneary, Paul McAneary Architects scooped Living Space Design of the Year.

As well as the above, an additional category opens tomorrow (1st April), Product Innovation Awards which champions real innovative design and highlights the importance of driving creativity and forward thinking.

To enter the Design Awards you need to download and entry form PDF from the Designer magazine website and send your submission before 1st June 2011.

Good Luck!

Image By Joanna Ford – www.joannafordinteriors.au

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Filed under Bathroom Interiors, Bedroom Interiors, chic, country style, Home Acessories, homeware, Kitchen Interiors, lighting, Living room Interiors, modern design, News, Periord Ideas, Quirky, Soft Furnishings, sustainable interiors