Welcome to our monthly newsletter, providing you with the latest events and courses, trend forecasts, new sources, and answers to your interior design problems.
What a Decorex !

A brilliant Decorex by general agreement: buzzy, a high foot-fall and a real sense that the top end of the decoration market is more than holding its own. We were the busiest we’ve ever been and our stand with a faux desk and filing boxes (made in MDF and drawn on with felt tip pen !) attracted lots of attention. A big thank you to Nic Thomas for building them (work@workshopstudio.co.uk), JVC (www.jvc.co.uk) for loan of the TV monitor, Sasha Waddell Furniture for the office chairs (www.sashawaddell.com), Best & Lloyd for the Bestlite BL2 table lamp (www.bestandlloyd.com) and Present Time for the Z lamp, stocked by www.designmyworld.net

New Book

Celia Birtwell is one of Britain's best-loved designers. Her memoir ‘Celia Birtwell’ (with Dominic Lutyens, Quadrille, £30) has just been published. With photographs of Celia, of family and friends -and their bohemian lifestyle in the 60s and 70s - and her charming drawings and illustrations of her fashion and home fabrics, and it has the intimacy of a personal scrapbook. The book has many engaging moments from the life of her shop in Westbourne Park Road, which she opened in 1984. The area was only beginning to gentrify, and the shop attracted a very diverse cast of bohos and oddballs.

The designer, who collected her CBE in June, has also just brought out two brand new collections of fabrics, including the playful ‘Grand Punchinellas’ (shown here), originally designed for her by David Hockney 25 years ago. She has also launched a new couture service aimed at interior designers. Any of her out-of-print designs (there are over 70 in the archive) can be ordered (min order 20 metres) or re-worked into new colourways. www.celiabirtwell.com

Members' News

Talented designer Emma Molony has just launched her Peter Pan wallpaper which features JM Barrie’s Neverland characters in charming cut-paper silhouettes. ‘Everything has been hand-cut by a scalpel... it's like drawing with a knife.’ she explains… www.emmamolony.com

Michael Curtis Green (of bespoke sofa and chair company www.curtis-green.co.uk) has launched Mahout Lifestyle to sell homewares from India. It’s particularly good for dhurries and pretty cotton beadspreads. www.mahoutlifestyle.com

Lapicida have launched an eye-catching new ad campaign for their antique reclaimed floors, which are ideal for the restoration of historic homes. The company offers a vast range of floor and wall tiles – over 300 varieties - in endless styles, textures and colours, as well as a bespoke service for complex masonry designs, from cantilever staircases to entrance centrepieces. www.lapicida.com

Black & Key, known for their 1930s-inspired furniture in hardwood veneers, is now producing upholstered pieces including this Broadway chair which, like all their products, can be customized to meet individual requirements. www.blackandkey.co.uk

Bespoke kitchen and furniture company Podesta have just launched a new website with an impressive portfolio of images of their beautifully-made kitchens and utility rooms, studies and libraries, dressing rooms, home cinemas... www.podesta.uk.com

Sales & Special Offers

Occa Home are offering us a special 50% off some great cushions, throws, bed and table linen from Lexington's Winter Collection – click here to see their range, but hurry, as it’s only for a limited time, and while stocks last ! www.occa-home.co.uk

Katharine Pooley's Warehouse Sale ( 6-7 October, 10-6pm) at Access Self Storage, Second Floor, 248 York Road, Battersea, London SW11. Great discounts on smart accessories, and all glassware and cushions reduced by 50%. These German crystal tumblers are now £60 (from £120). www.katharinepooley.com

Marvic Textiles’ Warehouse Sale. (11-15 Oct) . Unit 3, Westpoint Trading Estate, Alliance Road, London. W3. Another of their popular annual sales, with 50 - 80% off their chenilles, velvets, moirés, toiles, linen and cottons, silks, taffetas, damasks and hand-crafted crewels from Kashmir as well as both plain and floral wallpapers. Also some ex-display curtains, cushions and upholstered furniture. www.marvictextiles.co.uk

George Smith Autumn Sale (15 Oct-5 Nov), 587-589 King’s Road, London SW6 and Harrogate and Newscastle. Up to 50% off showroom stock, 20% off new sofa and armchair orders, 25% off fabrics. www.georgesmith.co.uk

This Month Don't Miss plus free tickets !

Palace Art Fair (6-9 October), Fulham Palace, London SW6. Launched last year, and organised by the team behind the Brighton Art Fair. Over 100 artists across all media will exhibit and sell their work direct to the public. www.palaceartfair.co.uk

Art London (6-10 Oct), Royal Hospital, Chelsea. An eclectic modern art fair with paintings, drawings, prints, photography, sculpture, glass works, sculpture and photography. Prices range from a few hundred pounds to six-figure sums. www.artlondon.net

International Antiques & Collectors’ Fair (6-7 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 (7-9 October), Sandown Park Racecourse, Surrey . Some 40 specialist dealers from across the UK will be selling items ranging in price from under £100 to six-figure sums. www.adfl.co.uk

Grand Designs Live (7-9 Oct), NEC Birmingham. The sister show to the London Grand Designs – there are interactive features, seminars, and 500 exhibitors under one roof. We have five pairs of tickets to give away (worth £18 each), so email us now on info@thehousedirectory.com stating ‘Free Grand Design tickets’. www.granddesignslive.com

The Pavilion of Art & Design (12-16 Oct), Berkeley Sq, London. With fifty international dealers, this fair has made a name for itself as a showcase for modern art, tribal art, decorative arts and design from 1860 to the present.  www.padlondon.net

Frieze Art Fair (13-16 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

Design Event (14-18 Oct). A showcase for the North of England’s best design talent with an exciting line up of furniture, lighting, jewellery, graphics and home accessories. Over 20 exhibitions, talks and workshops have been organised. www.design-event.co.uk

‘Cabinet of Curiosities’ (19 Oct- 5 Nov), Ben Pentreath, 17 Rugby Street, London WC1.  Ben Pentreath crams his shop with covetable curios at his annual show. This year artist Bridie Hall launches her first collection of interior objects and unique designs.  The focus of her work is intaglio boxes, decorative decoupage and country-house scented candles. www.benpentreath.com

The Affordable Art Fair (20-23 Oct in Battersea Park, and 27-30 Oct in Hampstead Heath), London. An unstuffy fair with galleries from across the UK and overseas and lots of good quality contemporary art with a price ceiling of £4000. The huge array of paintings, sculpture, photography and prints means there is something to suit every taste. This autumn there’s a brand new North London Fair a week after its big sister in Battersea Park. See www.affordableartfair.com for more info.

Handmade in Britain (28-30 Oct), Chelsea Old Town Hall, London SW3. Now in its fifth year, this fair showcases and promotes UK-based innovative and talented designer-makers working in glass, ceramics, textiles, fashion, furniture, silversmith, jewellery, paper, print-making, tableware and metal work. www.handmadeinbritain.co.uk

British Ceramics Biennial (until 13 Nov), various locations in Stoke on Trent. Modern ceramics by recent graduates and established names. The Spode Factory is the hub of lots of events. www.britishceramicsbiennial.com

Dates in Your Diary

International Antiques & Collectors’ Fair (1-2 Nov) , Ardingly, South of England Showroom, West Sussex. Around 1700 stands selling literally everything you could possibly imagine. www.iacf.co.uk

Spirit of Christmas (2-6 Nov), Olympia, London W14. This annual Christmas shopping event brings together hundreds of exhibitors. Gifts, decorations, specialist foods and wines galore. www.spiritofchristmasfair.co.uk

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