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Perception at The W London

Hakwood flooring adds edgy glamour to the city’s newest bar and lounge

Overlooking the hustle and bustle of the streets of Soho, The Perception at W London has been designed to give the capital a bold new hangout that brings together the many faces of modern London. It is a hub of social activity for discerning travellers and in-the-know Londoners alike.

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John Makepeace and Parnham College

September 2017 is a momentous time for John Makepeace, marking 40 years since he founded Parnham College – the institution that inspired a generation of designers and furniture makers, influencing the world of contemporary design. Parnham College  was ahead of the game, encouraging students  to learn practical skills and processes among designers across all disciplines. In celebration of his work,  the Design Museum are hosting a talk entitled Parnham and the Matter of Making.

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100% Design – Home office inspiration

100% Design is back this September and it houses the UK”s only dedicated workspace exhibition. We are always on instagram and pinterest dreaming about our ideal home office. If you are too, we’ve picked some our top exhibitors to get all heart-eyed about and take inspiration from at 100% Design.


Landa by Alki

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Dr Tristram Hunt announced as new Director of the V&A

The V&A Trustees have appointed Dr Tristram Hunt as the new Director of the V&A.
Tristram has served as Labour MP for Stoke-on-Trent Central since 2010, and was previously
the Shadow Secretary of State and Shadow Minister for Education.

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Game Plan at the V&A

The V&A Museum of Childhood’s major autumn exhibition – Game Plan: Board Games Rediscovered – will be a celebration of the joy, excitement and occasional frustration of playing board games.

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Title: Alice in Wonderland Chess set Artist: Robin and Nell Dale Date: England, 1983, Victoria and Albert Museum, London

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Showrooms get ready for CDW

CDW opens on May 24th and not only is it filled with on street installations and design pop-ups, but the big-boys in the showrooms also have some great stuff going on. Here are some top picks:

icons of denmark

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Art 16 Returns

Now in its 4th year, Art16 returns to Olympia London from 20 – 22 May 2016. Since its inaugural edition in 2013, Art16 has become a highlight of London’s cultural calendar and kicks off the summer season with an edit of international artists and galleries from more than 30 countries from around the globe. Here are a few of our faves pieces and/or exhibitors.

HUANG Pei-Hang

HUANG Pei-Hang from Aki Gallery

Huang looks at the modern day media we are fed and asks if we are really affected y other stories and events happening on the other side of the globe. Huang will be exhibiting via the Aki Gallery in Taiwan.

Series 1826- Mandy Barker, Artitled

Series 1826- Mandy Barker, Artitled

Mandy Barker takes images of all the detritus that is washed up onto the beaches of Hong Kong. This particular image of lighters took over 3 years to photograph and layer. Barker will be at Art 16 with the Artitled gallery from the Netherlands.

Blue and White Vase Bobbie Russon

Blue and White Vase Bobbie Russon

British gallery Bo.Lee will be at the fair with a range of artists including Bobbie Russon with her unsettling oils on canvas, depicting her sense of a lost childhood.

My Model, 2013, Wei Dong

My Model, 2013, Wei Dong

USA gallery Klein Sun, represent artists from the Far East, including Wei Dong- a figurative painter whose canvasses reveal influences pertaining to the Cultural Revolution and his time spent living abroad in the U.S. 

Eileen Cooper-Love Potion

Eileen Cooper-Love Potion

UK based Rook and Raven represent Eileen Cooper, the first female Keeper of the Royal Academy, since it was established in 1768. Sometimes described as a magic realist, Cooper brings an unapologetically female perspective to her subject matter, which encompasses sexuality, motherhood, life and death.

For more information on ART 16 and to buy tickets, click here.

Stig Lindberg for Skandium

skandium, launch, stig lindberg

Skandium is launching a series of kitchenware products with illustrations by Stig Lindberg from the children’s book Daniel Doppsko (Daniel Tip Your Toe) from 1959, telling the tale on how Daniel discovers a city and life under the water. Working with the Lindberg estate, we have transferred Lindberg’s work to mugs, bowls, tea towels and trays.

skandium, stig lindberg

Stig Lindberg (1916 – 1982). Born in Umeå, northern Sweden in 1916 as the youngest child of five, Lindberg’s classmates remember him being so skinny, they would call him ’Stickan’ (the stick).

In 1942 Stig Lindberg made himself a name amongst the Arts and Crafts community in Sweden with his now legendary exhibition ‘Faience in Spring’ at the Gustavsberg shop in Stockholm.

The exhibition was a huge success with enthusiastic reviews, hailing the new talent. Stig Lindberg with his vivid imagination and lighthearted playfulness had created a new ‘ceramic language’ for Sweden.

skandium, stig lindberg

With his light hand, originality and humour, Stig Lindberg won the hearts and minds of the Swedish public and is still today regarded as one of the most influential and loved artists in Scandinavian design history. Welcome to taste some of the talent and wit of Stig Lindberg through his Skandium products.

vPPR will present ‘Foam Dome’ at 100% Design 2014


Architecture practice  vPPR will present ‘Foam Dome’ at 100% Design 2014, an installation for the ‘Kitchens & Bathrooms’ hub sponsored by Turkishceramics. The ‘Foam Dome’ – inspired by indulgent bubble baths and cleansing spa experiences, will be a magnificent pavilion that focuses on the theme of well-being.

The sculptural geodesic dome is constructed with lightweight white mesh from which foam, composed of soap, water and air is released, creating a frothy, interactive breathing membrane. The remarkable installation will feature specially modified Turkishceramics products, alongside piles of soft white towels and reclining chairs to underpin the indulgent spa-aesthetic.

Jessica Reynolds, Director of vPPR Architects, comments, “We’ve designed Foam Dome around the idea of cleanliness, referencing an indulgent, purifying spa experience. Its effervescent, glistening, constantly changing envelope will draw visitors to the Kitchen and Bathroom hub. We think that the characteristics of foam offer a playful and complimentary approach to the beautiful curved glazed ceramic surfaces of Turkishceramics’ innovative products.”

Celebrating its 20th edition, 100% Design – the biggest design event in the UK – will return to Earls Court London this September with another strong line-up of Kitchens and Bathrooms brands.


vPPR / Turkishceramics / 100% Design


Alibis: Sigmar Polke 1963 – 2010 at the Tate Modern


Above: Sigmar Polke, Girlfriends (Freundinnen) 1965/66

From 9 October, Tate Modern will present the first full retrospective on Sigmar Polke (1941 – 2010), one of the most experimental German artists of recent times and a key figure in the generation who emerged in the 1960s.

Alibis: Sigmar Polke 1963 – 2010 will feature unseen work that demonstrates the unusual and wide range of materials with which artist worked, such as antiquated and sometimes poisonous pigments, extracted dye from boiled snails, meteorite powder,  and paintings created by brushing photosensitive chemicals onto canvas.

Viewing all forms of authority with an irreverent attitude and ironic humourPolke explored ideas of contamination and transformation, often confronting the remnants of National Socialism in his imagery while incorporating the radical cultures of the 1970s into both his art and lifestyle.

Tate Modern

9 October 2014 – 8 February 2015


London Design Festival Alert: twentytwentyone host ‘At Home with the Days’

Microsoft Word - draft At Home with the Days 16.05.14.doc

Above: Robin and Lucienne Day

Interior store twentytwentyone will host a selling exhibition of furniture and objects from Robin and Lucienne Day’s home entitled ‘At Home with the Days’ during London Design Festival. For the first time the public is offered a glimpse into the lives of Britain’s most iconic designers. The collection organised in collaboration with the Robin and Lucienne Day Foundation consists of personal items collected and made by the couple during the 70 years together – from handwritten recipes to furniture design classics to English antiques, textiles, kitchen and dining ware, decorative pieces, prints and assorted items. The eclectic range reflects the Days’ influential and discriminating taste. Continue Reading…

Detail: Coloured parquet flooring


Above: Reclaimed Flooring Company of Clerkenwell

The Reclaimed Flooring Company of Clerkenwell took inspiration from a collection of huge beams saved from one of Manchester’s historic cotton mills. Once salvaged each board is machined for flooring and cladding. The colourful outer edges worn away over time are selected to use for parquet flooring.

With nostalgia on the radar this parquet hits the right note, but in a less obvious way. Install a statement floor for your home styled in an irregular pattern using a miscellaneous bag of colours.

The Reclaimed Flooring Company of Clerkenwell

Pedder and Scampton’s Beach Huts


Pedder and Scampton’s graphic beach huts at Southend-on-Sea, recently shortlisted for a RIBA regional award, will be open for their first full summer season this year.

The architects beat more than 40 other architectural practices and completed the first wave of eight huts at the end of last summer. Upon release the huts were quickly snapped up, another seven are to be built, so if you missed out last time you could still be in with a chance.


Pedder and Scampton / RIBA


Portfolio Alert: Samuel Wilkinson

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Above: Babylon collection for Lexon.

Portfolio Alert is a  new feature for Despoke. We will be taking you on a whistlestop tour of the portfolios recommend. First in the line up is the back catalogue of industrial designer Samuel Wilkinson. We love the Babylon Collection, above, launched this month featuring a pen, a pen pot, scissors, a stapler, a tape dispenser and an alarm clock for Lexon.

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The 2014 London ‘Coffee Stops Map’ by Chris Ward


Visitors and residents around London need two maps. The London Underground Tube Map and The 2014 London ‘Coffee Stops Map.’ How many of you cannot start the day without coffee? Ever found yourself wandering around in London enroute to a show or studio in search of a good blend? If you have Chris Ward  “The boss who works from coffee shops” (BBC), author of the bestselling book ‘Out of Office’ created a map so you know where to go in unfamiliar surroundings. The best coffee shops London has to offer at each tube stop feature. This will be the answer to your prayers. The map is available as a limited run of posters. 100% of all sales will go to charity. This should be on the back of the Tube Map, do you agree?

A2 colour print — £10

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