Sign In
The London Design Festival 2015 | Top 10 Highlights
Save to wishlist

The London Design Festival 2015 | Top 10 Highlights

Picture of Jigna Umeria
Updated: 12 December 2015
Founded in 2003, The London Design Festival has grown to attract over 350,000 people, from 75 countries, with 395 events. As international go-to design event of the year, it is the perfect platform to highlight how design alters, transforms and improves daily life. From the future of transport and innovative light bulbs to hand-painted wallpaper and trendsetting retail spaces, this London festival is a celebration of design at its best. Here are ten must-sees:

A mischievous meander, Serpentine Pavilion

Celebrating the 15th anniversary of the Pavilion commission, this year’s winner is Spanish architect Studio Celgascano. The colourful temporary structure explores variation in opacity of the material spread across the pavilion and gives visitors different experiences as time and weather conditions change. Visit in the evening to see the pavilion lit up like a technicoloured firefly, or visit the serene setting in Kensington Gardens on a sunny day to enjoy a picnic.

Two for the price of one, designjunction

Play with the latest alternative mobile phone device and inspect nifty new design solutions that make you wonder, ‘why didn’t I think of that?’ This year’s designjunction sees it relocate from the effortlessly cool Sorting Office on New Oxford Street to two new locations: Victoria House, a Grade II-listed neoclassical building, and The College, the purpose-built building that Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design left behind in 2011 for a space in King’s Cross. You get two for the price of one at designjunction, where beautiful and thoughtful architecture is combined with gadgets, lighting, fashion items and home accessories.

User-centered design, Ergonomics in Design

One of Dieter Rams’ ten principles for good design states that ‘Good design is thorough down to the last detail’. Detail could mean the finish and features but it also means designing with the end user in mind. Ergonomics in Design will focus on providing tools and techniques that can be used to design inclusively for the ageing population and will also look at how we measure the success of design changes.

Retail theatre, John Lewis Oxford Street

You only have to watch a John Lewis advert or flick through their catalogue to see what good design looks like. A £14 million spend on a new home department space on London’s Oxford Street only confirms the retailer’s exemplary use of design to engage with people. The revamped spaces on the second and third floors of the store promises to transform the process of choosing furniture, lighting, fabrics, carpets, kitchens and bathrooms. Enjoy an entire month of design and lifestyle exhibitions and experiences in collaboration with carefully chosen interior and product innovators.

Designing solutions, Sustain RCA

Ever wondered what the world would look like in a sustainable future? Get a sneak preview at the Sustain RCA show. With intriguing ideas, some more finished than others, discover how some of the world’s most creative minds are exploring some of the greatest social and environmental challenges we face today. From energy and housing, to the rights of nature and the circular economy, this will no doubt give a better understanding to the problems we face but also the solutions that are around the corner.

A piece of luxury, Fromental

Purchase hand-painted and hand-embroidered wallpaper designs at discounted prices at Fromental’s sample sale at their new Queen’s Park show flat. Pieces to frame will be on sale from £50-£1,000. Since its establishment in 2005, Fromental’s intricate designs can be spotted in an envious list of commercial and residential properties around the world, including The Dorchester, London; George V, Paris; Wynn resorts in Las Vegas; and The Fairmont, San Francisco. Get a piece of the action on 24 September.

Creative scientists, Imperial College London

When scientists take on design, they seem to push boundaries that designers may not know exist. They answer questions designers may not ask and solve problems with a new perspective. The Designs for Life exhibition is an opportunity to meet scientists and engineers, discuss their ideas, research with them and join workshops and interactive activities. Dyson exemplifies the success that can be achieved with designer/engineer collaboration. While the aesthetic finish may not convey the same elegance and beauty of a Tom Dixon light, a Jimmy Choo shoe or an Apple iMac, they have certainly transformed the way we clean our living rooms.

The next chapter, Plumen and friends at The Old Les Trois Garçons

Designed by Samuel Wilkinson, the Plumen light bulb has charmed people’s homes since it launched in 2011. Efficient, affordable and aesthetically pleasing, it won numerous awards including the London Design Museum’s of ‘Design of the Year’ and a ‘Black pencil’ from the D&AD. Plumen and friends at The Old Les Trois Garçons celebrates the launch of a new range of shades and accessories.

Tomorrow’s talent, urban living interiors

It is always a pleasure to see tomorrow’s talent early. urban living interiors is an opportunity to see the latest trends, processes and ideas in practice. Some concepts will seem more commercially viable and others will show great potential, but it is definitely a great opportunity to purchase furniture, textiles, glassware and art from tomorrow’s designers before prices quadruple or are copied and made available elsewhere!

Quality of product and life, Method

The role of consumer electronics in people’s lives is continuously changing. For some time now, we have witnessed more features packed into one device while product lifespans get shorter to encourage upgrades to newer models. Electronic experts at Pinkt and Method will explore the shift towards people seeking objects that are both thoughtful and responsible in their design. Prompting a rise in products that do the most important things well and eliminate the superfluous, the panel will discuss how responsible objects have the power to simplify, rather than complicate, our lives.