The Edit: Tent London 2013


Young, talented and passionate about their craft – that’s how I would sum up the designers exhibiting at Tent London; one of the must-see annual shows during London Design Festival. Set in the Old Truman Brewery, East London – Tent is an exhibition showcasing some of the best new creative talent from the UK and abroad within the interiors / product design sector. This is the show where you come to discover new talent or get a glimpse of those on the fast track to success.  With so many fantastic designers under one roof, narrowing it down to ten favorites seems criminal, but here goes …  (in no particular order).


Immediately catching our attention, was Sian Elin‘s East meets West geometric patterned – cushions, textiles and wallpaper.

Inspired by her travels in India and Spain, Sian has taken the patterns found in Islamic and Moorish design, yet simplified the elements of the designs into the graphic styling of Scandinavia and then printed these patterns in bright pastels colors. A winning combination and perfect for any modern home! New product releases include: The Rosette in Teal Wallpaper and Cushions (image top left), The Rosette in Yellow Cushion and The Riad Cushion (image bottom left).


It is hard to believe that these industrial-chic, ceramic lights aren’t original vintage pieces – particularly the Flying Scotsman light in the new blue and pink floral finishes. Although this light reminds me somewhat of the old wash basins of the Victorian era it was actually inspired by the enamel pressed steel down-lighters you would often see in industrial settings and along Britain’s railways.  Rob Wheeldon of Aditi Studios explained that each pendant has been hand sculpted, worked, decorated and assembled using traditional methods. The result is they have a lovely, organic, textural quality about them.  And what’s more, as they are made using mostly natural materials and oil based products are kept to a minimum – the production process as sustainable as possible.

The new blue and pink floral finishes of the Flying Scotsman lights (see image above) were launched at Tent. Rob also launched two new finishes for his I/O (pronounced ‘eye-oh’) lights. These gorgeous mid-century, Scandinavian inspired pendants now come in Shark Blue (as above) and Staffordshire Cream.



We first met print designer Rachel Powell at last years’s Tent London and were immediately taken by her colorful, playful, retro style prints. At this years Tent she has impressed us yet again with her new Nelly elephant print.


It is clear that Simon Moorhouse, Creative Director of Invisible City has put his architecture and interior design background to great use in designing this collection of streamlined, modern furniture pieces named Incunabular.  There is so much to admire about these pieces – the geometric shapes, the flush front doors that open with a gentle press, the sophisticated color palettes, their mid-century inspired form, the sustainably resourced materials they are made from, and the fact that each piece is handmade in Britain.


Produced in her studio in Margate,  Maxine Sutton‘s illustrative and abstract designs are printed onto fabric and then she adds hand embroidery techniques, such as applique, patchwork, and needle-punch to create further layers of texture and interest. The images in her designs spring from the relationship with familiar domestic objects, everyday pastimes, the meaning of ‘home’ and home-making activities – making them add a welcoming touch to any home. We love that Maxine makes her product range out of organic cotton and natural linen and the new drum shades are made with an eco-bleach card backing, rather than the usual PVC laminate (which is harmful to the environment).

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London based designer Paul Crofts is the man behind these beautiful Nonla pendant lights. Named after the Vietnamese word for traditional Asian hats of the same shape, each powder-coated aluminium and American white oak top shade has a slightly different shape. If you happen to be in London and you want to see these lights in their full glory, pop along to La Petite Bretagne in West London (or see image above).

Tent London Blackpop Studios London Design Festival 2013

Maxine Hall of Blackpop Studios has designed a range of luxurious vintage inspired wallpapers that are nothing short of breathtaking.  Inspired by the patterns of ancient tapestries, Maxine uses a layering technique in her designs to give this wallpaper collection a depth and richness we have not seen anywhere else.

While they look like they could have been stripped from the walls of stately homes there is something uniquely modern and fresh about them too. What’s more, everything is printed by local UK companies who use environmentally friendly ink and are committed to the responsible sourcing of paper.



Pure patience, passion and craftsmanship is what Alexandra Raben puts into her beautiful ‘Intricate’ lamp series which are the result of cotton thread handwoven onto a steel frame (made by JAS blacksmiths in Denmark) to form a thin surface of patterns inspired by contrasts and transparency found in feathers.


zoe_murphy_remix_tent_london_buddah _of_surburbia

We have had our eye on British furniture up-cycler, Zoe Murphy since last year’s Tent London. (see our interview here). This year she launched ‘The Buddha of Suburbia Drawers” which was a result of her collaboration with Mini Moderns (an interiors brand whom we adore!) for their Remix project. Mini Moderns specialize in applied pattern across a range of interiors products including wallpapers, fabrics and ceramics.

During London Design Festival, Mini Moderns created the Remix project, teaming up with a select number of designers and artists who designed pieces (objects, furniture, lighting etc), based largely on their Darjeeling wallpaper design (which was launched this year as part of Mini Moderns Buddha of Suburbia collection).  Collaborators (including Zoe Murphy) had free reign to re-imagine the design on a piece of their choice. The Remix project was showcased at East London Design Store during London Design Festival.

I can’t think of a more perfect collaboration then Zoe Murphy and Mini Moderns. Using environmentally friendly paints, Zoe interpreted the design and applied her screen printing technique onto some retro furniture pieces and lined the drawers with ‘Darjeeling wallpaper’ and ‘Darjeeling fabric’. The result – another success.


We chatted with the effervescent and talented designer Ashley McDow of Occipinti about her new collection of post-vintage floral designs which are printed onto luxurious wall coverings, cushions, fabrics, prints and up-cycled furniture. While her designs have a quintessential British look to them, they are completely current for todays interior.  See our recent post about modern florals. We particularly like the turquoise piping around the blue background floral cushion above or the purple edging to the grey fabric.

Ashley also designs extravagant individual patterns for specific wall measurements; reinvents old pieces of furniture that need bringing back to life and produces simple pieces of artwork for clients.


Korea Design Membership – ATTA

Although The Edit is focussed on interior / and home furnishing products we also want to include a mention of the delightful students from the Korea Design Membership (in connection with Goldsmiths University of London) for their enthusiasm, creative energy and innovative products.  We stumbled across them on our way out of the show and were so pleased we did.


ATTA create several designs based around tea drinking and travel including The T-Point – a pyramid packaged tea bag with leaf designed to indicate when your cup of tea is at the optimum temperature (which is 70-80 deg for green tea).  The Tea pot Travel is an intricately lazer cut cardboard pop-up (with tea bag attached) featuring an iconic building or monument from around the world (think Eiffel Tower, London Eye, Taj Mahal). AndTea for Two are tea bags with cardboard pop-ups relating to specific occasions. Could be a ring to signify an engagement, a number which relates to a significant birthday, and more. Tea drinking and design rolled into one – these are fun!



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And more from the London Design Festival 2013 coming up soon!

Jill Brandenburg is a Freelance Interiors Writer & Stylist and Co-Editor of Design Lovers Blog.
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4 Responses to “The Edit: Tent London 2013”
  1.' Maxine says:

    Hi Samantha, It was great to meet you at Tent London, I remember you well. Loved the wright up that you gave Blackpop, thank you so much. Maxine

  2.' Nairita Roy says:

    I am addicted to your blog! Great Post! Looking forward to get more information from you. I have an older home with so many ideas in my head, but I also have 2 little ones that make doing things difficult. So for now I will decorate vicariously through you.

    • Jill says:

      Thanks Nairita, thanks for your kind comments. We totally understand what it is like trying to get execute ideas for your home when you have little ones at home with you. Not easy!

    •' Maxine says:

      Yes Tent has all the ingredients needed to launch talent and excite visitors. Blackpop was launched there 2013. Thinking of decorating Nairita, have a closer look at our wallpapers and fabrics, flushed with faded grandeur.

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