The H&A guide to London Design Festival

Starting today, London will be packed with the latest in the design world. Follow our guide for what not to miss

Starting today (Saturday 13th September), London will be packed with the latest in the design world. Follow our guide for what not to miss


First to Decorex in its new location at Syon Park where eight design houses will reinterpret scenes from Hogarth’s ‘A Rake’s Progress’. We’re looking forward to seeing what Timorous Beasties and Retrouvius come up with for ‘In the Madhouse’ (see box left). Also, rug company FRONT London is flying in its master-weaver from India to demonstrate the complex craft of hand-knotting rugs (020 7921 8406).

From one big show to the next, drop into FOCUS at Design Centre Chelsea Harbour to see the major interiors brands’ new collections. Watts of Westminster are celebrating their 140th anniversary and there are some exciting new collaborations to see from fabric by Allegra Hicks for GP&J Baker to Diane von Furstenberg jazzy prints for Kravet. (020 7225 9166)

100% Design celebrates its 20th anniversary at Earls Court this year before relocating to Olympia in 2015. The interiors section looks set to cause a stir with an installation called ‘The Maker’s Carousel’ by design studio Mette (top). It will show the challenging idea-to-product journey of designer-makers and let visitors lend a hand in the process.

On to the V&A for a new take on a seminal exhibition staged by the museum 40 years ago. At the time, 'The Destruction of the Country House' prompted a movement to save country houses at risk of being lost (above). This year’s show expands the theme with new projections, screenings and a grand mausoleum installation.

The museum will look forward too with a show for 'The Wish List' project in which 10 design legends have commissioned 10 new talents to design for them the piece they have always wanted (pictured together, below). The finished products will be displayed on the V&A’s architecture landing (020 7942 2000).

Visit the Squint showroom in the Brompton Design District en route to design your own Brompton Bike – see it being made and ride off on it the same day (020 7589 6839).


In Trafalgar Square Airbnb, the DIY hospitality company, has  invited four designers, including Jasper Morrison and Patternity, to create their own idea of home in small pop-up rooms (below).

Next nip over the river to the Southbank where H&A favourite Mini Moderns is taking over the Festival Terrace shop to launch its bright new ranges as well as host a run of workshops and talks (020 7960 4200).

A trip back over Hungerford Bridge and up to Thornback & Peel’s showroom in Bloomsbury will give you a chance to bid in the company’s silent auction for a mid-century modern chair upholstered in its eye-catching fabrics (right). All profits will go to the charity Music as Therapy (020 7831 2878).

Elsewhere, Design Junction near Holborn will showcase the best creatives emerging from the north of England. Look out for Daniel Schofield’s playful tables and Annabel Perrin’s zingy textiles.


A celebration of ‘honest design’ makes for a wholesome show at SCP. Pieces include new ceramics from Stoke-on-Trent designer, Reiko Kaneko (020 7739 1869).

Finally, immerse yourself in, among other exhibits, vibrant new prints from exciting young designers Rachel Reynolds, Emily Humphrey and Occipinti’s Ashley McDow ('English Garden' wallpaper, above) at TENT London.

The London Design Festival runs from 13th-21st September

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