Monthly Archives: June 2011

National Design Academy will offer the UK’s first Interior Design degrees in Retail, Heritage and Outdoor Living

During Universities week, the National Design Academy in Nottingham will be the first educational provider in the UK to offer design-related degrees in Retail, Heritage and Outdoor Living by distance learning. The approval of these 5 degrees by Staffordshire University will enhance the range currently offered and provide greater choice and specialisation.

Building on the success of the BA (Hons) and Foundation Degree in Interior Design, these further degree courses will be available from 1st August 2011. The National Design Academy is the only design school to offer specialist qualifications in these areas.

RETAIL DESIGN: This focuses on understanding the customer experience in order to create innovative interiors and retail spaces that entice people inside and provide them with an interesting and enjoyable experience. Understand the history of retailing and its development into the modern day iconic buildings and interiors. A combination of interior design and shopping – who could resist?

HERITAGE INTERIOR DESIGN: Creating sympathetic interior design for period properties, either restoring and designing to the date of construction or creating contemporary interiors within period properties with all the challenges that that entails. Listed, non-listed, grand or small this will suit budding designers with a keen interest in period properties. It will also appeal to those working as volunteers within heritage properties who would like to expand their knowledge and gain a degree.

DESIGN FOR OUTDOOR LIVING- BA (Hons): Designing the transitional space between the inside and outside, extending the interior design to the adjacent area outside. Create beautiful Patios, terraces, pool areas; even balconies deserve the same TLC as the interior space. Discover residential and commercial uses for hard landscaping, outdoor furniture and accessories, lighting, water features, plants and planting. This is not a gardening course but will draw on skills from the FdA Interior Design (or similar level course) to achieve this rapidly emerging new design specialism.

For over 23 years the National Design Academy has been a Centre of Excellence for Interior Design and with over 1500 students, are the largest provider of nationally accredited Interior Design courses in the UK, both in studio and by distance learning. Qualifications include Diplomas, Foundation Degrees and BA (Hons) in a range of design-related disciplines.

If you want to know more information about the new courses you can visit www.nda.ac.uk, call them on 0115 91234 12 or book on an open day.

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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

Nottigham Eco Artist and Designer turns heads with her plastic bottle designs

Nottingham based Artist and Designer Sarah Turner, is causing a storm in the interior design world with her eco-friendly lighting designs.  From her studio in the heart of Nottingham, Sarah uses old plastic bottles discarded from the city’s cafes and transforms them into eclectic pieces.

So far she’s been commissioned by the likes of SodaStream, London Fashion Week, Twitter, the Ideal Home Show and recently secured a place in the final of this years Philips lighting competition.

Read her exciting interview with The Design Hub and find out how Sarah’s made such an impact within the design world and what’s in store for her next! Continue reading

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Filed under Art, Bedroom Interiors, Birmingham Interiors Show 2011, Eco Lamp, Eco-friendly, Home Acessories, Interviews, lighting, Living room Interiors, News, Quirky, Sarah Turner, small businesses, sustainable interiors, The Designers Block

Design of the Day – Anthropomorphic furniture from John Reeves

John Reeves specialises in contemporary furniture and product design. Born in Burnley, Lancashire and now living in Vietnam designing, developing and teaching, his off the wall 2010 “Sketch” collection has stopped me in my tracks.

The pieces are based on the “poised anthropomorphic tension between the stationary and the moving, the living and the inanimate, the man made and the natural; rather like a 3 dimensional petrification of anamorphic evolution.” John created the designs by using Auto CAD (computer aided design) using a drawing tablet.  Cast in recycled aluminium, the curves and shape of the collection reminds me, some how of worms which I find absolutely fascinating, I particularly like the dresser with the oddly shaped mirror.

I can’t find a price for the designs, I assume they will be priced to order and could set you back quite a bit.

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Filed under Bedroom Interiors, Eco-friendly, Home Acessories, Living room Interiors, modern design, News, Quirky

Dear Interior Designer can you design the perfect home for me – I have Dementia?

Over 750,000 people in the UK suffer from Dementia and that figure is estimated to rocket to 1.5 million by 2051. The majority of people who are diagnosed with this horrific disease are over the age of 65, but there are around 16,000 under the age of 65 who have also developed Dementia.

This is ofcourse not taking into account friends and family who are left with the devasting effects of the disease, many of which struggle to cope with their loved ones changing behaviour.

Simple tasks like going to the toilet, cooking, cleaning and walking down the stairs can become a huge problem for Dementia sufferers and the place they call home is no longer a safe haven. As a result, we need to be more aware of how to create a safe and homely environment for a sufferers that will meet their every need. One problem… in the UK there are no formal courses where people can train and gain qualifications for designing for Dementia, in comparison to the US who have already pulled their finger out and got a head start.

Alesha Churba from Idaho, USA,  is a Certified Aging Place Specialist (CAPS) and Interior Designer,  she has a wealth of knowledge in this field and helps others to understand the importance of knowing how to design for people who have specific needs, like Dementia. The Design Hub are delighted to have Alesha share her expertise with us and we know you will too. Continue reading

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Filed under Bathroom Interiors, Bedroom Interiors, Education, help & support, Kitchen Interiors, Living room Interiors

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

Hear first hand from interior design student Felicity what distance learning is really like

Good morning folks! I hope you are all well. I feel like I’ve been pulled away from blogging the last week or so because of a side project, so I’d like to post something today which I’m extremely happy to show you all.

I’ve had the pleasure of following bubbly and energetic student, Felicity Dainton from Wiltshire, through her Professional Interior Design Diploma studio course at the National Design Academy (NDA) in Nottingham. It was great to see first hand how she went from strength to strength and thoroughly enjoyed every task, every day.

The studio course is made up of one week at the NDA learning about colour theory, technical drawing, rendering, how to set up a business and lots more. Then the students have four weeks at home to complete their assignments and have a final week back in the studio to go over the course again and brush up on the skills learned.

Hear Felicity’s experience for yourself and how she progressed throughout the weeks. I’d also like to say thank you Felicity for letting me join her through this journey!

If you fancy flexing your creative talents, want to build on a hobby or make the first steps to changing careers like Felicity, you can visit the National Design Academy website www.nda.ac.uk, contact them by phone on 0115 91234 12 or visit their Facebook and Twitter page.

This course is also available to international students and can be done solely at home instead of in the studio, just contact them to find out more!

Take the leap of design! It could be the best thing you ever do!

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Filed under Careers in Interior Design, courses, diploma, distance learning, home study, Interviews, new career, News, Success Stories, The National Design Academy, www.nda.ac.uk

Design of the Day – Wall climbing furniture

Furniture designer Lila Jang pushes the boundaries of design to the limit with her unusual creations. The piece I have chosen today is a sofa which literally climbs the wall! Created in 2008 for the Parcours Saint-Germain exhibition in Paris, the “Canape” sofa is half on the floor and half up the wall – perfect for a tiny room!

Lila’s other designs follow the same obscure format as the “Canape” and almost look melted. Her approach to furniture design is like nothing I’ve seen before, I can’t even find her official site so if anyone does give me a holla.

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Filed under Design of the day, Living room Interiors, modern design, Quirky, Soft Furnishings

Design of the Day – Meal times will never be dull again with the Swing Table

What a fine morning campers! The sun has got his hat on and everyone seems to have a spring in their step. In keeping with this great summer weather, (or what little us Brits have)  is this rather exciting Design of the Day.

Created by london based designer Chris Duffy and his team, the Swing Table is just the perfect piece of furniture of inject life and fun into meal times. The table is made in a four-poster bed style, allowing the GEO light above to be suspended in air. But this isn’t even the best part, the chairs are attached to the top of the frame with wires so they too are suspended like swings! What fun! This dining table is my dream, and not to mention a doddle to vacuum under.

The Swing Table in available in bespoke colours and finishes and is 220cm high, 235cm long and 135cm deep. It takes roughly 8-12 weeks to arrive and will cost you a whopping £4995.  Who said eclectic was cheap?

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Filed under Living room Interiors, modern design, News, Quirky, Swing Table

Award winning Interior Designer Kimberly Moore shares her top Exhibition Design tips!

As well as helping others develop their skills as an interior design tutor at the National Design Academy, Kimberly Moore has designed for some of the country’s biggest names including Lloyds TSB and Marks & Spencer. 

Her brand Bold Britannia, recently attracted the eye of label Powerhouse Fitness, who wanted Kim’s expert eye and opinion on how create the perfect exhibition stand for popular Body Power Expo event, at Birmingham’s NEC.

Find out what techniques Kim used to meet the needs of her client and create a super hot stand! Continue reading

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Filed under help & support, Interviews, modern design, News, The National Design Academy, www.nda.ac.uk