New products and services, interesting shops, ideas for your garden, our pick from the design fairs, and other things we like...
‘Ochre designs are born through intensive experimentation and research, but above all are guided by an instinctive love of material and a fascination with form. We prize a subtle glamour that emanates from innovative techniques, visceral patinas and handcrafted detail. It is with great pleasure that we introduce our 2015 collection.’
Ochre‘s new Willow dining table is an oval interpretation of their Whippet table. It has granite grey steel legs and a polished plaster top, and looks beautiful with their Sable dining chairs in hand-dyed leather and the Arctic Pear single wave chandelier.
This multi-use Sable stool with brass foot bar is the latest addition to Ochre‘s Sable seating and is offered in two heights, either a tall bar stool with a back or low stool without. Made with the finest Italian saddle leather, it has hand-sewn pinched seams and scalloped corner details.
The Caribou Bar Stool, with its distinctive S line silhouette, has leather arms wrapped in tactile Italian saddle leather and a low-slung seat.
Ochre‘s baton-shaped leather handles come in hand-dyed shades in evocative seascape tones and rich berry hues of blackcurrant, blueberry, beet, chilli, truffle, sage, mushroom and quince. In several sizes: 45cm, 30cm 15cm, 8cm
Or visit one of their showrooms (by appointment):
46 – 47 Britton Street, London, EC1M 5UJ. Tel: 00 44 (0) 20-7096 7372
462 Broome Street, New York, N.Y., 10013 Tel: 212-414 4332
Among Skinflint Design‘s latest reclaimed and salvaged lighting are some intriguingly named ‘Asylum lights’. It turns out that they actually were used in a Victorian lunatic asylum in the Midlands, c1950…
If you had walked into a hospital ward sixty years ago you might well have seen lights like these mounted above the beds. They are pictured here in the infamous derelict Cane Hill Lunatic Asylum poised over the beds or bent and broken hanging down the flaking paint of the water damaged walls.
Installed in the late 1950s their clean lines and elegant shape mean that they are now considered a classic of mid-century design, from a practical point of view the articulation of the arm and head enabled the bed and patient to be easily illuminated by the resident medical staff. Unfortunately many of these elegant lights were lost during 1980s refurbishment programs, simply discarded as being ‘old fashioned’ and ‘out of date’. They are now highly sought-after stylish collectors items, and make for beautiful wall mounted bedside lamps with a rather unusual history.
The theme of this year’s architectural salvage and reclaimed materials Salvo Fair is Tiny Salvaged Spaces, an exhibition of shepherd’s huts, summerhouses, reclaimed sheds and livings wagons. A fantastic display of various small buildings which could be used as garden offices, sleepover cabins, festival accommodation or places for relaxing will make a grand entrance to this year’s Salvo Fair.
This is the tin tabernacle which will be brought along by LASSCO Three Pigeons. Teaming up with Love Lane Caravans, they recreate these semi-permanent structures that were popular in Victorian Britain. With a steeply pitched roof, pierced carved gable ends above the rectangular hut, a central door to one long side, the interiors are often decorated with vintage wallpaper and can be fitted with beds, kitchens and a small dining area. The fittings and fixtures are created from salvaged sources. As it’s on wheels it it doesn’t require planning consent and you could move it to a new position every weekend!
Bert & May, known for their distinctive reclaimed and new tiles, have just launched Bert & May Spaces, and Phase 1 is ‘Bert’s Barges’, in urban and country versions. This one, unveiled at the recent Clerkenwell Design Week, is their City Barge: the ultimate bachelor/bachelorette pad, providing the city dweller with a one bedroom luxury floating suite. With its matt black exterior and its Scandinavian style interior, the city barge creates the perfect blend of sophistication and simplicity. Made to order, it comes complete with a hidden foldaway double bed for guest stays, and a spacious rooftop terrace for entertaining.
John Stefanidis established his design practice in Chelsea in 1967, attracting a discerning international clientele with his carefully considered, vibrant and beautiful transformation of homes worldwide. He currently works on a consultancy basis and is passionate about cultivating his design blog, ‘The Developed Eye’. We were delighted to catch up with the peripatetic Stefanidis in his London home.
Q. How do you describe the Stefanidis style?
A. I do so many different moods…it’s a question of climate, atmosphere, ‘genius loci’. I did the most beautiful yali on the Bosphorus, all in Ottoman style; but at the same time I can do contemporary… What is most important is ‘The Developed Eye’, which is also what I call my blog. At one time I did not like antiques and period decoration and design. I was a fan of modernism; you learn and this trains your eye.
Q. How does travel influence your style?
A. Travel awakens your curiosity and opens and develops your mind.
Q. How do you evaluate your own designs? What are you aiming for?
A. You always feel you could have done more. Some designs are more complete than others, depending on the client. One of my aims is to inject colour into interiors. I am against the monotony of beige and grey. I begin with research, looking through art books and volumes on interior design.
Q. How does the client influence the design? What questions do you consider when you meet new clients and undertake a new project?
A. You begin by having clients describe everything they need. How many members there are in the family, how much storage is necessary, whether they are collectors, if they have artwork or antiques they would like incorporated into the design. If they would like the style to be more or less formal. We then create drawings with samples and colours showing every aspect of the exterior and interior design. These architectural renderings can be used throughout the project. We have built a house in Portugal from comprehensive drawings and a house in Dubai with total FF & E specified (furniture, fixtures and equipment) incorporating the client’s own furniture, books and antiques, cataloguing everything to be included.
Q. What is comfort?
A. Good bathrooms, comfortable armchairs, good light, cleanliness.
Q. What is a ‘timeless home’?
A. How can you have a ‘timeless home’? It’s bound to change! Even a stately home changes from generation to generation. But we do aim for designs that do not date and you can achieve this by not going to extremes or following fashion. Seek the eclectic – or aim for minimalism if that is what represents comfort to you.
Q. How do you deal with modern technology?
A. I love it! I long for a walk in a chill room, but I don’t have the space! Lighting changes all the time and you have to keep up. LEDs have revolutionised lighting design with cool light.
Good music systems are essential, but it’s ridiculous to have elaborate audiovisual systems that are complex and become outdated as soon as they are installed. But the bigger the TV, the better, as I myself go to the cinema less and less and prefer to watch DVDs at home.
Q. Is there an element of surprise in the Stefanidis style?
A. I hope so! Have you seen my books? I often use paint effects and trompe l’oeil – from painted lace to faux wood-grain – even an image of a full size horse in one house, to general surprise and delight.
Q. What’s the next step in interior design?
A. There is no next step. We don’t recognize trends until they are on the wane. Everything is travel and cultural references. You will always be inspired if you keep your eyes peeled, consider what is needed, use references in art, and design books to create the developed eye.
Q. How did your own range of fabrics and furniture evolve?
A. Through need. You want a particular fabric for a client and can’t find it so you design it yourself. I now have an archive of over 700 furniture designs and I’d love to launch an e-commerce site soon. The entire archive of my designs, including my blog, has gone to the Bodleian. The majority of my fabric designs have been sold to Tissus d’Helene.
For more images of John Stefanidis’ past projects, furniture & accessories, visit: www.johnstefanidis.com
John Stefanidis’ blog is called The Developed Eye
Tissus d’Helene specialises in the finest artisanal wallpapers and fabrics, including hand-blocked or hand-screen prints, silks, linens, hand-embroideries and velvets. The striking John Stefanidis fabrics can be custom-coloured for specific design projects. Visit their showroom at 421 Design Centre East, Chelsea Harbour, London SW10 0XE. Tel 00 44 (0)20 7352 9977 www.tissusdhelene.co.uk
Loaf started off selling beds in 2008, soon added sofas to their range, and now supply ‘comfy, laid-back furniture and squishy stuff for the whole home’. Their catalogue now also features bedside tables, wardrobes, chests of drawers, kitchen and dining room furniture, even lighting. Here are some of our favourite items from their new SS15 collection…
‘Pudding’ sofa in Burnt Orange Plush Velvet, from £1195
Small space, big ideas: Shed Decor by Sally Coulthard is dedicated to decorating and equipping your shed space for relaxing, working and playing. There are hundreds of ideas for transforming your unpromising potting shed or tired old summerhouse into a rustic hideaway or urban den in ways above and beyond the constraints of your own home.
This cosy, welcoming sleep space has the ideal blend of a light, bright colour scheme and layers of comfortable duvets, throws and blankets. (photo: Mikkel Vang / taverne agency)
The RHS Chelsea Flower Show has been held in the grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea, London every year since 1913, apart from gaps during the two World Wars. Once Britain’s largest flower show (it has now been overtaken by RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show), it is still the most prestigious. It’s always an amazing crowd-puller, with about 157,000 visitors over the five days. Despite this year’s battering by the weather, it’s as inspiring as ever. Here are some of our highlights…
The M&G Garden designed by Jo Thompson is a romantic retreat, with a two-storey oak-framed building inspired by Vita Sackville-West’s writing room at Sissinghurst, a large natural swimming pond edged with water loving plants, a woodland of river birches, acacias and acers, and a garden with tumbling roses and peonies.
Flock is launching a new collection of rugs made in a combination of high quality wool and renewable plant fibres. The range features seven original designs where wool and plant fibre has been interwoven to create subtle and elegant patterns and detailing. The colour palette ranges from earthy neutrals to soft, muted shades, and each design uses plant fibres to creative effect. The designs include heritage-inspired tweed patterns, bold stripes, wave textures and striated textures using ombré effect wool. All the rugs are handmade and have a wonderfully rich, chunky texture whilst being soft underfoot.
‘Bonita’ is a luxurious wool pile with wavy plant fibre design detailing in five elegant colours – oat, silver, jade (shown here), liquorice and alabaster.
Orange is the colour of the season! It’s vibrant, but playful and optimistic, and it’s already made its way from the fashion catwalks into our homes. Leading bathroom retailer Ripples has put together this stylish selection of orange bathroom fittings and accessories inspired by the 1960s and 1970s.
The new Kartell range by Laufen combines iconic furniture design using plastics with high-quality
ceramic bathroom pieces. The washbasins are crafted from SaphirKeramik, a lightweight material
that is unique to the Swiss manufacturer.
All Saints Mirror, £206.40
Washbasin Bowl, £420.00
Drawer element (for under washtops), £1,051.20
Max Beam Stool in Tangerine orange, £180.00
Freestanding Bath, £6,958.80