Welcome to our monthly newsletter, providing you with the latest events and courses, trend forecasts, new sources, and answers to your interior design problems.
Website of the year award 2009

Many of our members have encouraged us to enter the Good Web Guide’s Website of the year award. There will probably be thousands of entries, so please give us your vote by clicking on the link !

Tips & Trends

'As the nights get longer there’s nothing nicer than having throws scattered over the backs and arms of sofas. Fringed throws and buttoned cushions add comfort as well as bringing the finishing touches in terms of colour, pattern and texture to an interior scheme.'
Annie Stewart, Anta

Anta is celebrating its 25th anniversary. Its throws, cushions and fabrics come in great heather tones such as grey-blues, purple-pinks, greenish naturals. Anta’s products - textiles, furniture, flooring, paint, ceramics, clothes and accessories - are all made in Scotland, using natural materials and employing local craftsmen. For more, go to www.anta.co.uk Tel: 01862 832477

Our Stand at Decorex

A big thank you to Balineum for offering a set of their fabulous hand-spun and hand-dyed French ‘Syrie’ towels for our prize draw. The lucky winner was upholsterer Marian Hodson. See Balineum’s full range of smart fabric shower curtains, lovely Portuguese bath mats and luxury towels at www.balineum.co.uk

Thank you too to Genesis Imaging for producing and installing our backdrop wall at Decorex (look at their vast range of photographic and display graphics services on www.genesis-digital.net), and to Pedlars for lending us their Tolix steel bar stools. The tall galvanised version costs £215. There is also a low version, in lots of colours. See www.pedlars.co.uk to see their full range of products.

Decorex Round-up

Even by its own exalted standards, this year’s Decorex was, by common consent, a striking success. We could hardly get away from our own busy stand, but we did catch sight of :

Generously-sized off-the-shelf panelling, skirting and architraves from www.theenglishjoinerycompany.com

Decorative books (old Readers Digest compendiums in fact !) covered in vellum, reproductions of old maps and engravings from www.trowbridgegallery.com

The kaleidoscope of colours and products by the Belgian architect Agnes Emery, www.emeryetcie.com

The original 1950s car door handles (all of which will be reproduced) from The Beardmore Collection, www.beardmore.co.uk

Gibson Music’s new state-of-the-art ‘Mirror TV technology, www.gibson-music.com

Nicky Haslam’s ‘Random Harvest’ stand for Ben Whistler , with styles ‘harvested’ from the past and put together with a new twist and a humorous touch. www.benwhistler.com

This month don't miss

The Decorative Antiques & Textiles Fair (until 4 Oct), The Marquee, Battersea Park, London SW11. If you’re quick you can still get to this inspiring fair, with more than 140 exhibitors. The fair is renowned as a source of painted furniture, Gustavian & Swedish design, 20th century design, lighting, and mirrors. www.decorativefair.com Just print out this page to buy one ticket and get one free.

Buy/Origin (6-11 and 13-18 Oct), Somerset House, Strand, WC2. Come here to see the very latest work in glass, ceramics, jewellery, metal, furniture, paper, basketry, wood and textiles. You can buy and even commission original and one-off pieces. Over 300 artisans, with works priced from £20 to £20,000. www.craftscouncil.org.uk

Art London (8-12 Oct), Royal Hospital, Chelsea. 80 galleries will be showcasing their very best paintings, drawings, prints, photography, sculpture, glass and ceramics. www.artlondon.net

International Antiques & Collectors’ Fair (8-9 Oct), Newark & Notts International Showground. The largest antiques fair in Europe, with around 3000 stalls. www.iacf.co.uk

The Esher Hall Antiques and Fine Art Fair (9-11 October) Sandown Park Racecourse, Surrey . For a free ticket (normally £5) just email The Antiques Dealers Fair Ltd at  thehousedirectory@adfl.co.uk or ring 01797 252 030, quoting The House Directory. www.adfl.co.uk

Grand Designs Live (9-11 Oct), NEC Birmingham. The sister show to the London Grand Designs – there are interactive features, seminars, and 500 exhibitors under one roof. There’s a special offer for readers of our newsletter: book now and get tickets for just £12 (saving £6 off the door rate). Visit their website or telephone and quote THD09 (offer ends 8-10-09). Tickets include a free show guide worth £8 (collectable at the show only) plus kids go free. www.granddesignslive.com

The Free Art Fair (12-18 Oct), Barbican Centre, London EC2. The art fair where all the work is given away to someone who really loves it will take place for the third and final time and promises to be ‘the most fun ever’. www.freeartfair.com

The Pavilion of Art & Design (14-18 Oct), Berkeley Sq, London. Formerly DesignArt London, this fair includes modern art, decorative arts and design from 1860 to the present.  www.padlondon.net

Frieze Art Fair (15-18 Oct), Regent’s Park, NW1. A well-known October fixture. 150 galleries from around the world provide visitors with the opportunity to see and purchase works of art by over 1000 of the world’s leading contemporary artists. www.friezeartfair.com

Zoo Art Fair (16-19 Oct), This event brings together over 60 contemporary art organisations in the East End through a series of exhibitions, solo shows and stand presentations. A notable showcase for up-and-coming art talent. www.zooartfair.com

The Affordable Art Fair (22-25 Oct), Battersea Park, London. Some 120 galleries from across the UK and overseas gather to exhibit contemporary art. The fair’s relaxed ambiance invites you to browse amongst the thousands of paintings, sculpture, photography and original prints - all priced under £3,000.  See www.affordableartfair.com for more info.

International Antiques & Collectors’ Fair (27-28 Oct), South of England Showroom, West Sussex. Around 1700 stands selling everything you could possibly imagine. www.iacf.co.uk

The Gifford-Mead Collection (28 Oct), Christie’s South Kensington.
Nicholas Gifford-Mead started dealing in architectural antiques over 35 years ago and has been specializing in fire furniture, particularly in chimneypieces, ever since. Some 170 lots will be on offer- fine English and European chimneypieces, fire backs, andirons, shovels, tongs, fenders and sculpture (estimates from £500 to £50,000). www.christies.com

TVADA Autumn Antiques & Art Fair (30 Oct-1 Nov) Radley College, Abingdon, Oxfordshire.
On offer at this established antiques fair will be an extensive selection of art, plus sculpture, glass, clocks & barometers, carpets and decorative accessories. Plus talks on antiques & design, and a sale of donated furnishing fabrics at only £3.50m to benefit The Prince’s Trust. www.tvada.co.uk

New Book

Wendy Baker’s Complete Book of Curtains, Drapes and Blinds is a really useful guide to window dressings and accessories – for anyone from first-time homeowners to interior design students and design professionals. It covers the basics - from window shapes and measuring, but also includes hundreds of sketches which can be scanned and reduced to put on sample boards, or emailed to curtain makers to eliminate costly mistakes. Email orders to info@shoestringbooks.co.uk or call 01367 850 378 or 07778 769 904 www.shoestringbooks.co.uk