‘Legends’ at London Design Week 2019 sees showroom windows and showcases dressed in their finest, expressing all the sophisticated glamour of the prevailing mood in design. The initiative celebrates collaborations, and for many, inspiration is provided by the photographic archives of Iconic Images. Through the lens of international photographers, images featuring luminaries from fashion, rock, film and the arts are creatively matched.
A roster of renowned interior designers includes Sophie Ashby, who has been inspired by a bold portrait of Bianca Jagger for George Spencer Designs; US design duo Yabu Pushelberg incorporates an image of film star Michael Caine at SA Baxter Foundry & Design Studio; Turner Pocock has looked to an alluring photograph of film star Ava Gardner for Tissus d’Hélène’s showcase, while Henry Prideaux partnered with Fox Linton, incorporating a stunning image of British model Twiggy. Further designer collaborations include Alidad with Tim Page Carpets, Hirsch Bedner Associates with Decca, US decorator Cortney Bishop with Holland & Sherry; Paris-based Bambi Sloan with Houlès and Interiors etc with Nobilis.
Phillip Jeffries, Arteriors, Gladee Lighting and Perrin & Rowe chose fashion images by legendary photographer Norman Parkinson while Pierre Frey selected a close-up of Dorian Leigh by Milton H. Greene for its boudoir scheme. Others were inspired by photographs of Hollywood stars including Raquel Welch at Abbott & Boyd; Diane Kruger at Colony; Marilyn Monroe at de Le Cuona; Elizabeth Taylor at Topfloor by Esti and Sean Connery at West One Bathrooms. Singer songwriter PJ Harvey is the inspiration for Altfield’s window while Julian Chichester choose photographs of David Bowie by Terry O’Neill.
Others have been inspired by art and literature. They include pioneering artist of the Vienna Secession movement Koloman Moser for Backhausen at Colony; Fornasetti at Cole & Son; fictional children’s character Pinocchio at Porada; and contemporary glass artist and lighting designer Jaroslav Bejvl at Gladee Lighting. Vaughan pays homage to legendary sculptor and artist, Alberto Giacometti while Porta Romana celebrates four influential female artists: Barbara Hepworth, Gillian Ayres, Lucie Rie and Vanessa Bell. Zoffany looks to 20th-century design influences and McKinney Gainsborough salutes designs which graced RMS Titanic. Colefax and Fowler honours design legend Jack Lenor Larsen while Watts of Westminster looked to one of their founders, Sir Giles Gilbert Scott.
More show-stopping curated edits include those from Nina Campbell who transformed her showroom into a decorated apartment and GP & J Baker who teamed up with interior designer Ben Pentreath.
Creating a home has never been more important as a means to influence your own world in your own way. Many of us want to disconnect and recharge and it is hugely empowering to create rooms where we can reflect and retreat from a fast-paced life. The bathroom has moved on from being a purely functional space to being a place of relaxation, inspired by natural beauty and colour. Create a sanctuary that seamlessly offers a visual connection between the bedroom and the bathroom. This graceful ‘Aqua’ basin from Alape at West One Bathrooms (shown in deep blue) is inspired by the nuances of water. The high-gloss glaze gives it a visual depth and ensures that every one is unique. Or sink into a deep ‘Pescadero’ bath by Victoria + Albert Baths (shown here in RAL matt salmon orange). Inspired by the sea, it features a distinctive wave-shaped rim. Don’t skimp on comfort either in these newly-imagined spaces. Embrace soft materials like this tactile ‘Tricotage’ and ‘Tricotage Rayé’ fabrics from the new collection by Dominique Kieffer at Rubelli/Donghia or use ‘Lily Pad’ porcelain tiles by Artisan of Devizes that feel delightful underfoot (shown here in admiral).
West One Bathrooms, Second Floor, Design Centre East
Victoria + Albert Baths, Third Floor, North Dome
Rubelli/Donghia, Ground Floor, Design Centre East
Artisans of Devizes, Third Floor, Design Centre East
The designer behind the US-based bespoke cabinetry firm says that “for us as an international brand, the Design Centre was the obvious choice.”
This ‘Misty Venice’ bar by Gallotti&Radice is shaking up cocktail hour with a dash of contemporary elegance. Open the lacquered ash doors to reveal a mirrored backboard and glass shelving.
Gallotti&Radice, Second Floor, Centre Dome
The creative director of Irish bespoke furniture brand Ventura on its new showroom in Design Centre East: “We’ve had the most incredible reception; we feel like we’re a part of a big family.”
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Bauhaus art school – a landmark that many view as the true birth of modern design. Several brands are celebrating with collections that show how its influence still shines today. Arte’s ‘Odeon’ wallcovering (pictured top) has a bold pattern with blocks of circles that’s based on a functional and minimalist design from the Bauhaus period. With a similar robust, architectural feel to Arte’s wallcovering, ‘Abstract 1928’ fabric from Zoffany (pictured centre) is part of the new Icons collection that pays homage to the 1920s, including the Bauhaus; the printed linen is available from Style Library. Samuel Heath’s ‘Landmark’ taps (pictured bottom); shows the same sense of harmony between form and function that the Bauhaus masters strived for; it’s shown in an urban brass finish.
Arte, Second Floor, Design Centre East
Style Library, First Floor, South Dome
Samuel Heath, First Floor, North Dome
The interior designer and her fashion-designer husband talk about the crossover between interiors and fashion.