Grand Designs announces new feature – Design Discovered

  • 5 Apr 2019

Grand Designs Live 2019 will see the launch of a new feature, Design Discovered, which will give five emerging enterprises the opportunity to tell their stories at the show. In addition, the five enterprises will be given bursaries and the chance to exhibit and sell what they make at the show.

The five designers below have been chosen by Barbara Chandler, Design Editor of Homes & Property at the London Evening Standard, who has a long track record of fostering new UK design talent.

Barbara Chandler comments on the introduction of Design Discovered: “Hats off to the show organisers Media 10 for supporting new designers in this way. Exhibiting at this hugely popular home show is a great opportunity for these eager fledgeling design entrepreneurs, who are already so impressively professional in the way they have perfected their products. It’s also inspirational and informative for others who would like to follow suit – a chance for visitors to share real-life design success stories, and to pick up unique and innovative items for their homes.”

The five chosen designers are:

Aese Hopstock of House of Hopstock – houseofhopstock.com

London-based, Norwegian illustrator and designer Aese Hopstock prints her vivid pictorial designs onto fine bone china, kitchen textiles, velvet cushions, makeup/washbags, eye-masks, silk scarves, wallpaper and fabric. Everything is carefully-considered and well-crafted – precious fine bone china has 24ct gold detail, and silk scarves have hand rolled hems. “I believe in beauty and luxury – for everyday.”

Sam Lander – samlandermaker.bigcartel.com

Whilst still at Manchester Uni, Sam was horrified by the vast amount of polystyrene takeaway boxes littering the streets particularly at the weekend. What if this waste could become a valuable resource?

Using the drum of an old washing machine, Sam is perfecting ways to spin rounded shapes for bowls, lampshades and more. “Maybe it might be possible to make everything from old materials…”

Majeda Clarke – majedaclarke.com

When weaver Majeda Clarke won the Cockpit Arts/Clothworkers Company Award, she utilised her prize – a two year stint in the Deptford Weave Studio (which ended last year) – to set up her own business. Using luxury yarns such as sheer cottons, cosy cashmere and subtle silk, her beautiful hand-weaving brings modern geometry to an ancient craft. She cherishes imperfections as the mark of the hand-made. Majeda has also developed blankets and woven jacquards for batch production in British mills, and fine muslins for weavers in Bangladesh.

Juliet Munro of Giggy & Bab – giggyandbab.co.uk

Juliet Munro has based the clever design of her folding step-stool on an original from the last century found at a market. This multi-purpose product doubles up as an extra seat, is produced in the UK and is both functional and beautiful. It now comes in ten glossy colours, from ice-cream to primary, with black or blonde plywood tops and treads. (The company name of Giggy & Bab is in memory of Juliet’s great-aunts). “If it’s provenance you’re after, this is the stool for you.”

Freya Whamond and Sam Bolt of Troo Studio – troostudio.com

Freya and Sam’s creative partnership came out of a shared love of making, using traditional woodworking techniques paired with modern machine processes. These two graduates of Rycotewood College set up Troo Studio in their Hereford workshop, making unique wooden pieces, ranging from smaller items for the home to bespoke heirloom furniture. “We like to experiment with the making process, and with materials that complement wood.”

Barbara Chandler adds: “What I love is the diversity of our group, which shows the varied routes ingenious designers are taking at different stages in their life to turn their ideas – dreams even – into product. Sam Lander is our youngest exhibitor, a very recent graduate filled with energy, optimism, invention and ingenuity for reusing waste plastic – the world needs a lot of Sams right now.

“Juliet Munro of Giggy & Bab is reissuing a classic step-stool design from the last century which she rescued from a market stall. She’s painstakingly sourced British suppliers for the different metal and wood components and brilliantly upgraded the colours and finishes, adding a shiny logo plate as the final touch.

“Weaver Majeda Clarke used maternity leave to explore the possibilities of a new career in textiles. She then gave up teaching in mid-life to do a second BA in textiles, pursuing a hands-on craft approach. She’ll be bringing her own loom to demonstrate her skills – and you too can have a go.

“Freya Whamond and Sam Bolt of Troo Studio are enthusiastic young woodworkers who make beautiful pieces to commission – see in particular Freya’s delicately curved Bud chair, and explore the story of its making.

“Lastly, Aese Hopstock is a brilliant young fashion illustrator, buzzing with creativity, who is translating her glorious graphic skills onto an expanding product range, which (newly for the show) includes fabric by the metre and wallpaper.”

Grand Designs Live 2019 will take place from 4-12 May 2019 at London’s ExCeL. Click here to find out more.

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