The New Design Britain Awards are one of the most important competitions in the UK for young design talent, giving recognition to students for innovative and ground-breaking work and providing an opportunity for INTERIORS UK to encourage new young stars and look to the future of the furniture industry. Our very good friend over at the National Design Academy – Anthony Rayworth, was once again on the judging panel in the categories of Furniture and Accessories this year, and gives us his overview of the winning designs.
Daniel Schofield – Winner – Furniture
Daniel’s passion for design focuses on the creative exploration of materials, industrial processes and user interaction, working closely with factories, workshops and manufacturers to produce contemporary furniture, lighting and accessories. By giving each of his products an individual story of their own, Daniel hopes to create timeless pieces that have an extended lifespan, reducing their impact on the environment.
Born in the UK, Daniel trained as a graphic designer, then a carpenter before studying Furniture and Product design at Sheffield Hallam University, during which time he worked in New York for leading Manhattan based interior design practice and specifier, DDC.
Graduating in 2011, Daniel soon set up the Sheffield based studio, specialising in adding extra value and narrative to mass produced and limited edition products.
Daniel Schofield Studio has already received national and international acclaim and exhibited at a variety of shows across the country.
‘Shifty’ Desk – Winner – Furniture
Dan says of his work:
“The Shifty desk / hallway stand is designed as part of the secrecy range of furniture I produced. Unsuspecting people presume that the storage compartment is the draw on the front. What they don’t know is that by pulling the FSC Ash work surface, the whole top slides open revealing the hidden storage area, perfect for personal papers and electronic equipment. By doubling its size and having the work area come towards the user, the desk also lends itself perfectly to small space living”.
Cristiana Ionescu – Winner – Accessories
Cristiana believes that besides functionality, sustainability and global design issues, other important aspects of design are aesthetics, humour and sentimental value. Cristiana’s winning entry ‘The Three Bears’ is a set of stools for children who also like to scramble all over them. Made of felt over a steel frame, The Three Bears are a witty and fresh take on the classic Charles and Ray Eames ‘Elephant’ illustrated below.
A very resounding ’Well Done’ to both finalists!
Standard of work
The overall standard of work was excellent. Innovation and design thinking was clearly in evidence as was the understanding of commercial considerations and awareness of the wider context in which their products were to be located. Craftsmanship and functionality underpinned theoretical and commercial frameworks with all work being made to a standard which not only allowed the concept to be clearly presented but demonstrated understanding of client requirements and aesthetics, whether these were commercial or residential.
Finally, once again, a very heartfelt ‘thank you’ to Tony Hollyer, Awards Co-Coordinator, UBM; Tony works tirelessly to ensure that the judging experience is enjoyable, professionally conducted and clearly articulated.