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Monday, 22 March 2010

London Design Week: Chelsea Harbour talks...

London Design Week is an international event that takes place biannually, showcasing all that is new in the world of interiors. Design lectures are held at Chelsea Harbour Design Centre and this year's Rooms with a View was a talk about the favourite rooms of leading interior designers Lulu Lytle, Suzy Hoodless, and Charles Rutherfoord, who revealed, through open conversation, how various inspirational spaces influenced their work today. The diverse topics, covered everything from a Highland moss colour palette to Byzantine art, to Mies van der Rohde stairwells.

Lulu Lytle explored the play with scale and pattern (think armadillo) and her clever use of maps in high end international apartments. She also had interesting things to say about tiling every surface area so that when lit, pools of light intensified the colourful tiles.

Suzy Hoodless worked on a brief that included the words '1950's Ski Chalet'. The client gave her the project on condition that Suzy never contact her until the project was completed - which must have been interesting! The inspiration for this project came from a Patrick Caulfield painting and it has to be seen to be believed. Just brilliant. She also spoke about when to use mood boards and her message was: 'more reality, less conceptual'. The key point is to build the relationship with the client, so that the process remains an organic one.

Charles Rutherfoord discussed a stairwell which he designed for a 1960's house in Dulwich, inspired by a post war American prison and it could easily have been the work of Mies van der Rohde (see image above). Passionate about colour, he has experimented with pigmented plaster to striking result - walls of vibrant fiery orange and scuba diving blue have left a lasting impression on me. 

The unifying theme running throughout this excellent talk was the importance of colour and lighting - an innately symbiotic relationship as one cannot exist without the other. All three interior designers revealed an intuitive understanding of colour and I am now convinced that this is what makes a good designer a great one. 


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