Tag Archives: eco chic

What trend is sweeping the interior design world and getting everyone shouting?

It’s fantastic to see interior designers from all corners of the industry really thinking about sustainable design and showing people how they can re-use materials to create not only eclectic pieces to put inside a home or building, but taking a serious approach to their own carbon footprint. Pressure groups and political parties have shouted about eco-friendly living for years, so this new “eco-chic” or “up-cycling” trend which has swept the design world hasn’t just popped onto the scene from nowhere.  Bearing this in mind, I ask, why has it taken us so long to finally care about our surroundings and start to change our habits?

I’m sure some boffins out there have an intricate explanation, but from my point of view, attending shows such as Birmingham Interiors, Ideal Home Show and keeping track of what other bloggers, designers and tweeps are discussing, reveals one major point, people have far less to spend so are forced to make-do and mend.

I know many people and designers, who’ve jumped on the band wagon, using old wood from skips, battered doors, unwanted plastic bottles and vintage suitcases to re-create various pieces of furniture which look immense. Eco designer Sarah Turner, who I met at this years Birmingham Interiors Show, creates lights from used plastic bottles and Hendzel & Hunt who are behind the label “Made in Peckham”, also showcased at BIS, create wonderful rustic tables and chairs from wood and pallets discarded on the streets of Peckham. Watch the video below to see their designs!

Hendzel & Hunt

Sarah Turner

Sarah’s designs also featured in some of the show homes at this years Ideal Home Show at Earls court in London and it’s great to see young fresh talent really pushing through on the eco front, basing their designs around sustainability and setting a positive example.

This years Ideal Home Show followed suit and was heavily based around sustainable living from George Clarke’s Coronation Street eco-refit, that demonstrated how energy inefficient many of the UK’s homes are and how they can be improved, to Linda Barker’s eco-chic styling seminars. As well as interior design celebrities endorsing green living, other areas of the show also showed their support for green living. The stand for the Help for Heroes campaign at the event was kitted out with furniture made from various soldiers uniforms, buttons and hats which I thought was a lovely gesture.

The impact these shows have on people is huge, in one of her eco-chic seminars, Linder Barker showed spectators how to make a cake stand from old plates and glasses. I thought this was a fantastic idea and decided to make one myself and write a guide for others to do the same. To this day, one of the most popular searches I find on The Design Hub, is how to create a vintage cake stand! Okay it’s not on the same scale as investing in under floor heating or compressed insulation, but it’s still making a difference and tackling the “throw-away” culture which we’ve all been caught up in – thank you Linda!

Even Robin, the Finance Director at the National Design Academy, had a go at up-cycling and created a magnificent cupboard from bits of scrap. It didn’t cost him a penny and give him great satisfaction I’m sure, to know that he’d created something from nothing. Interior Designer Karen Lane, who’s based in the East Midlands, often gets old worn furniture from charity shops and restore’s them to sell on – check out her guide!

Which brings me to another important point, all this restoring and up-cycling is really benefitting our charity shops. I think my local one is sick of the sight of me, but I get a lot of pleasure making use of unwanted items and helping others at the same time, so it’s worth having a look to see what you can find.

Like South African designer Katie Thompson say’s, “make something ordinary, extraordinary”. (check out her Suitcase Chair’s they’re a great example of up-cycling)

In these hard economic times, people seem to be more open to all ideas thrown out there that can save money which could be the reason “eco-chic” and “up-cycling” and has taken off.  Those who have redecorated their home on a shoe string are leading the way with chic, rustic, recycled designs that all the home magazines have jumped on. If you want to achieve this look, it’s cheap and easy, just use your imagination and make use of interior design blogs/sites/forums to get inspiration, because they’re all shouting about it in one form or another.

Back to the point, this years biggest trend is sustainable living which like all trends has levels of expense, if you can afford a £2000 chair made from old t-shirts, great, it’s still an appreciation of the eco concept and keeping that designer in business, but if your more towards the make-do and mend end of the spectrum, you have a wealth of exciting and creative eco-friendly options to try. Whatever level, whatever design keep thinking green and you’re already bang on trend.

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Filed under Bathroom Interiors, Bedroom Interiors, Birmingham Interiors Show 2011, Eco-friendly, George Clarke, Ideal Home Show 2011, Kitchen Interiors, lighting, Living room Interiors, News, Periord Ideas, Quirky, Sarah Turner, sustainable interiors, The Designers Block, Up-cycling, www.nda.ac.uk

Design of the Day – The extraordinary Suitcase Chair

Interior Designers across the world are now firmly on the eco-friendly bandwagon and pushing their designs to new environmentally savvy heights. One designer from South Africa has demonstrated how old vintage suitcases can be transformed into chairs! Katie Thompson graduated from Design Time School of Interior Design in Cape Town with the aim to make the ordinary rather extraordinary.

The “Suitcase Chair” is my favorite of Katie’s designs, I just adore it’s quirkyness and the white linen set against the pale blue case gives this piece a beautiful and delicate personality. Also, the clever recycling of what can be seen as “junk” is a fantastic example to their designers wanting to be more forward thinking.

The chair has a steel reinforced internal structure with the body is covered in 100% white linen, with the buttons draped in floral Liberty fabric. I’m not sure how much this piece is, but going by her other designs which sell from £600 upwards, my guess is that it’s not going to be cheap, but neither is quality.

 

Image source: interiordesignsense.com

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Filed under Katie Thompson, News, Quirky, Soft Furnishings, Suitcase Chair, sustainable interiors, Up-cycling, upholstery

Design of the Day – Bag yourself a light!

We’ve all heard the term “put a bag over your head”, well these designers have taken the concept of covering something unsightly with a bag literally, creating the “Bagalight Old School” light. Created by Martin & Cameron Fry, the shade (bag) is made from paper and card and makes great use of an object people would usually throw away – super eco-chic!

The bulbs are A rated energy efficient which is great news for your pocket and the environment and you can choose from a variety of designs, as well as table light versions to wow your friends.

Yet another great find on the brilliantly quirky Brighton POD website, where you can buy any of these designs for under 30 quid!

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Filed under Bagalight, lighting, modern design, News, Quirky

Up-cycling made easy with Interior Designer Karen Lane

It’s the hottest new trend in the design sphere and I find myself banging on about up-cycling every week. But why not, Linda Barker‘s doing it, Madonna, Gwyneth Paltrow and of course interior designers have been re-vamping tired furniture forever! If you’re wanting to save some pennies and transform your home don’t think you can’t have your cake and eat it, because you can!

Here are some examples of up-cycling by Interior Designer Karen lane, with a short guide of how to create the desired effect. So set aside a lovely Saturday or Sunday afternoon and enjoy being creative. If you need any advice on your project or want  Karen to sprinkle some of her magic on your furniture just  visit her website Autograph Interior Design or leave a comment. Continue reading

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Filed under Bathroom Interiors, Bedroom Interiors, chic, country style, Eco-friendly, Home Acessories, Kitchen Interiors, Living room Interiors, modern design, News, Periord Ideas, Quirky, Style, sustainable interiors, Up-cycling

Re-vamp tired furniture with Linda Barker’s chic styling tips

The theme of this years Ideal Home Show is eco-friendly and sustainable designs. In keeping with this theme, household name and interior designer Linda Barker shared her styling tips with the public in her how-to seminar at the show.

Linda’s advice was to abolish minimalism, embrace wallpaper and start crafting at home. Up-cycling is the hottest new trend, so check out how Linda transforms a drab white table into an eco-chic work of art.

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Filed under Bathroom Interiors, Bedroom Interiors, chic, country style, Eco-friendly, Periord Ideas, Quirky, sustainable interiors

Linda Barkers 2011 Interior design trend forcast

Linda Barker reveals what the hottest interior design trends are for 2011. At the top of the list is Eco chic, sleek black units, knitting and bronze.

Linda is the force behind the “Ideal Interior of the Year” award at this years Ideal Home Show, and will be offering her design expertise in person at the event, with a series of demonstrations and seminars giving practical advice on home interior products, styling, design, tips and more to keep you on track with the latest looks. So you don’t miss out!

But to make sure you’re in the loop, thedesignhub have collaborated with the Ideal Home Show 2011 to give you a chance to WIN tickets to go to the event. Click HERE to enter! Continue reading

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Filed under Eco-friendly, Ideal Home Show 2011, Linda Barker, News, Style