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How To : Clerkenwell Design Week 2017

May in London is traditionally a month of design shows and inspiration. This year there were abundant things to look at during CDW17, The Chelsea Flower Show and PhotoLondon.

Here is a roundup of just some of this year’s CDW highlights that caught my attention, covering flooring, textiles, furniture, lighting, bathroom brassware and kitchen cabinetry. All of these elements are focussing on the details within a residential scheme with a Velvet Orange design tip on how to use the product.

Jonathan Field

From East Yorkshire, Jonathan Field’s beautiful pieces are inspired by the landscape he grew up in. The wood is centre stage of his pieces. This table has been made from two halves of a single cut of wood where the natural crevice is filled with resin and an LED light creates colour. He can create pieces blending with other materials such as metals, stones etc. too and furniture can be tailored to size.

VO Design Tip : Worth looking up if you are after something unusual – combining classic and modern materials like this with just a sliver of drama lends itself to a modern, architectural interior where natural materials soften geometric lines.



Samuel Heath

A classic label with a reputation for classical looks. But Samuel Heath are producing some eye catching brassware in interesting finishes and more modern lines. Here are two styles and finishes from the new LANDMARK collection. Both inspired by the Bauhaus approach to design, the details seen on these fittings would not be out of place in modern bathrooms. VO design tip: Keep it Simple and splash out on these fittings, combining them with the simplest of stone finishes and neutral walls.


 Landmark PURE in City Bronze



Landmark INDUSTRIAL in Urban Brass



YEP – LINO. This is not just any old lino however – it will set you back as much as some lovely wood floors or tiles but it works in so many different applications in residential spaces and not just commercial applications. The modular pieces can be put together in any way you wish, giving you design freedom. The floor shown here that I am standing on has been laid close together. You can also lay parquet style pieces or “tiles” with grout lines and borders, and it looks incredibly stylish. It is super slim, can be used with underfloor heating and is easy to clean and maintain.

VO design tip: consider Amtico in family dens, open plan dining areas or tight spaces like skinny hallways. Get it fitted by a professional.






Beautiful minimalist bespoke and made to measure furniture – and very affordable too.

VO design tip: these large lights can be clustered and hung at different heights such as here or play on the symmetry and shape, hanging them at equal height either at 90 degrees to each other or perpendicularly across a long dining table or kitchen island.




This firm is based in Brixton and supplies bespoke kitchen furniture. Made from sustainable birch plywood, the units can be tailored to a specific space and a palette of colours can be chosen from. The stand at CDW showcased how grains could be mixed up on the door cupboards and colours could be combined. The stand was in one of the Clerkenwell churches and was darker than I would want for the photographs which don’t do the product justice – check out the website though to see how lovely the cabinetry is. Well priced too, a standard London, 2 bed Victorian house kitchen could be kitted out for around £15K.

VO Design Tip : the clean lines and design flexibility using grain and colour would work really well in a brightly lit space – combine with exposed brick walls and natural, blond wood floors (pine floorboards with lye treatment or ash).



Swedish family firm Svensson has been running since 1887. The Accessoire range shown here is made from wool and is not chemically treated – meaning it is totally biodegradable and eco friendly. The designers of this range use a common base of black and white thread and throw in the patterns on top making them co-ordinate really well together.

VO design tip: Mix mix mix….! Either pick a uniform colourway and go wild with upholstery and curtains, putting the same strong colours on the walls, or, take the whole range and throw it all together keeping walls a pale warm neutral and floors bleached white.


Solus Ceramics

I was really excited by this stand showing off a wide range of Italian tiles that could be the star of any room – from zebra and leopard print to camouflage and hexagon macasser ebony. Again really well priced, the zebra porcelain tiles can be sourced at around  £60 per sq meter. There are herringbone and dog tooth check ranges too – most certainly worth a look. Be brave, these are design statements that could absolutely work if used in the right space.

VO design tip: it would be best to go all out with these tiles and co-ordinate them with fabrics or wallpapers to complement. Keep furniture and accessories really simple and then pile on co-odinating accents.




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