With tired feet, excited minds and packs full of business cards and brochures, we traipsed away from this years 100% Design. But we had huge smiles on our faces as we stepped back out into the blistering sunshine that September afternoon, as we felt fulfilled by what we had encountered. Broken into 3 sections, this years exhibition covered 100% Design, 100% Materials & Details and 100% Futures. We were most impressed by the representation of countries such as Norway and Poland who had showcased their countries talented designers, and we were also intrigued by some work presented by recent English graduates, who’s ideas were less commercial but highly innovative. The GrayConcrete stand was impressive in its simplicity, and we are going to look for ways to include this material into our future designs (www.grayconcrete.co.uk) and we enjoyed the craftsmanship and retro stylings of &Then Design (www.andthendesign.co.uk)
On we ventured to the Truman Brewery of the now hip Brick Lane in North East London, to TENT London. A younger brother of 100% Design, this exhibition combined innovative furniture and digital presentations. We found this part of the festival particularly enjoyable, not only due to its fine location, but due to the number of unique and well crafted products within. Much more focused on up and coming talent and ideas, we took away details of Zoe Murphy’s bespoke printed furniture (zoemurphy.com) and of an ingenious new gadget called Wattson that will help us all focus on the amount of electricity we are using around our homes (http://www.diykyoto.com/uk).
Though the exhibition had been described as smaller this year, we felt the quality of products on display were high. So many studios around London were also part of the design trail, really enhancing the feel that the entire city was involved in the festival this year. We look forward to getting our teeth into some of the new products and to visiting again next year…and hopefully to be greeted by the same wonderful weather!