x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 23 January 2018

Trendspotting: What to watch for at the London Design Festival

Kirath Ghundoo's Mix 'n' Match wallpaper and Zhang Zhoujie's digital furniture are among new products using the latest technology.

Kirath Ghundoo's Mix 'n' Match wallpaper collection explores geometric patterns and bold colour combinations. www.kirathghundoo.com
Kirath Ghundoo's Mix 'n' Match wallpaper collection explores geometric patterns and bold colour combinations. www.kirathghundoo.com

As I write, I'm preparing for my annual trip to the London Design Festival, the most exciting week of the year for contemporary interior design, packed with the latest products, materials and technology.

Every year, world-class designers and creative types join forces with emerging talent to showcase their work and launch their new collections. So this week I'll highlight some of the key designers that trend forecasters will be looking out for.

The show that started it all, 100% Design in London's Earls Court, is a hub of creative talent and a key event on the international design calendar. Kirath Ghundoo, a young and exciting designer that we've been keeping an eye on over the past year, will launch her Mix 'n' Match wallpaper collection. Her eclectic style draws inspiration from a variety of sources, from fashion to architecture. Her work is a mash-up of pattern and colour, exploring simple and complex geometrics and bold colour combinations. It's bang on-trend, since we expect a fusion of styles to emerge over the next two years. The digitally printed collection allows the user creative freedom to display patterns as single strips, endless repeats or a mix, creating a strong visual statement in any interior space.

We'll also check out the fractal beauty of Zhang Zhoujie's digital lab. He explores new digital creation methods, combining traditional handmade techniques with the latest manufacturing processes to create unique, bespoke furniture pieces. This year he will show an architectural, futuristic chair and arching stool, each composed of a series of triangles that are precisely fixed together by hand.

The small but supercool Tramshed show in Rivington Street, Shoreditch, which opened last year, brings together a fabulous range of innovative designers. We'll definitely walk the cobbled street again this year to see collaborations between De La Espada and Benjamin Hubert, and Soren Rose Studio and the award-winning Istanbul-based design studio Autoban, which will be launching six new products this year, including the Pill lamp, a wonderful capsule-like piece available in steel and brass in three different forms.

Benjamin Hubert's latest range of furniture and lighting follows his signature material-led design process. He uses a range of natural materials including granite, blown glass, marble and leather in a true celebration of the handmade. He gives the raw materials an industrial edge by emphasising new construction techniques and a functional, simplistic aesthetic. We'll be looking for his Quarry marble lighting pieces, visually quiet yet strikingly beautiful in their simple elegance.

Shelley Pond is the creative director of Scarlet Opus, www.trendsblog.co.uk, www.scarletopus.com