Sometimes you just need something (or someone) to push you out of your regular routine. For me, that person was Andrew Joseph, founder of Andrew Joseph PR. After seeing him in NYC this past September, he convinced me to book a ticket and come to Decorex.
I will hop on a plan and fly across the Atlantic without blinking an eye, but I always seem to hem and haw when it comes to London. Perhaps it’s just close enough to home that it feels like an intrusion in my workweek and family life rather than an escape (dealing with the airports takes more time than the flight). But, as Andrew so eloquently reminded me, “Girl! You are an hour from London by plane. Now book a ticket and come to Decorex.” I am so happy that I took his advice. Andrew, who was coordinating a press trip for his clients Best & Lloyd, Fromental, and George Smith, took me under his wing for three fun filled and informative days.
The first booth I visited was the brilliant Best & Lloyd lighting. Based in Birmingham, Best & Lloyd have been designing and manufacturing fine and bespoke lighting since 1840. The company’s dedication to quality is wonderful, using only the finest materials and craftsmen in England.
The 2012 collection showcased a range of diamond cut crystal table lamps with new chandeliers and wall lights for the Emily Todhunter Collection. It is one of the most opulent representations of modern lighting I have seen in a long time. Emily Todhunter is one-half of Todhunter Earle, one of the UK’s most prestigious interior design firms. I can completely picture her fabulous glass art Oyster Chandelier suspended over a large round antique dining table.
In London their showroom is situated on Kings Road, and is now available in the US through George Smith.
One of the most talked about, visited and photographed stands at this year’s show was the Fromental ’Scholar’s Studio’. The company flew its head artist, Master Wang, over from China, to spend his time at the show meticulously painting a beautiful chinoiserie wallpaper panel.
The panel featured the delicate illustrations Fromental is known for, using Master Wang’s inimitable ‘unconscious’ style. At the end of the show, the stunning panel was auctioned off in aid of Decorex’s chosen partner charity, Maggie’s, with the winning bid being an impressive £2,000.
Established in 2005 by Tim Butcher and Lizzie Deshayes, Fromental creates the world’s most beautiful wallpapers and fabrics. Combining the finest skills, together with luxurious fabrics, Fromental’s distinctly British style effortlessly blends classicism and contemporary.
Tim, the former Creative Director for the world-renowned Chinoiserie house, De Gournay, has great passion and a keen understanding of art and interiors. He has also trained as a weaver and designed silks for the likes of Paul Smith and Ralph Lauren. Together he and Lizzie are a perfect team.
Fromental employs Chinese painters and embroiderers, based in a studio in Jiangsu province, who are skilled in using traditional materials and techniques. And, while Fromental’s craftsmen can produce traditional Chinese wallpapers, they are also are equally adept at bringing to life contemporary designs created by Lizzie and Tim.
Monday I will fill post about my trip to the George Smith factory in Newcastle…stay tuned.