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We’re back from visiting top drawer, an exhibition for creative retailers and brands, showcased within the impressive Olympia.
What better way to spend a Sunday – linking arms with a dear friend (who just so happens to be a retail expert, how handy) we trawled the home, gifts and stationery stands stopping to chat with designers, indulging our love for quality craftsmanship and discovering new talent.
With this in mind, we headed to the ‘spotted’ exhibit, a curated pick by Charlotte Abrahams featuring 40 new businesses all telling their own story of innovation and originality. We loved the understated lighting by John Hollington and the beautiful porcelain votives by Abalon.
As a top drawer round up, we’ve pulled together our edit of favourite exhibitors chosen for their quality of craft, design integrity and for offering a brand that is really desirable yet accessible to all.
sue pryke x wild + wood
A covetable collection of handmade tableware which is pure, functional and tactile. Sue’s latest range sees her first collaboration with her husband John (she’s the potter, he’s the wood turner). With its muted colour palette, simple shapes and considered treatment of materials each piece blends naturally together offering irresistible appeal.
The story behind this brand is inspiring, using long established techniques of traditional Swedish craftsmanship, they employ visually impaired artisans to create quality household goods. With a core business of brush binding, you’ll find anything from grooming & vanity brushes to scrubbing brushes. Each item is designed exclusively, each bristle attached by hand and all are made from natural materials. Never has the everyday utility item looked and felt so beautiful.
the organic company
With a respect for people and nature the values at the organic company are clear; an honest, environmental approach to design and functionality. Offering a tasteful range of textiles for bathing and cooking the collection also includes bags, blankets and a selection of childrensware. Every item is made using 100% organic cotton so you can indulge in a piece of everyday comfort knowing its been designed and produced responsibly.
care by me
Established in 2012, care by me follows a conscientious philosophy to offer desirable yet durable products, crafted in the finest materials whilst benefiting the women who produce them in Nepal. Working with cashmere and wool textiles, this Danish brand offers a sense of casual luxury for you and your home.
Having a never ending love for a good tea-towel this brand caught our eye. Hjem, meaning home in Danish, was founded by Emma Richmond in 2014. Tucked away in her Alpine studio she produces sustainable, geometric designs inspired by the nature that surrounds her. Her collection includes cushions, trays, tea towels, napkins and coasters all presented with the same clean, minimalist aesthetic.
We took the opportunity to introduce someday designs too and we hope to collaborate with some of these brands in the near future.
Following a recent trip to Stockholm, I think we may well have left our hearts there! Having visited before on a number of retail buying trips, arriving with no agenda other than to explore and do as we wished, felt like we were seeing the city through new eyes.
With its old town, parks, oh so stylish shops, cafes and well just about everyone who lives there.. it oozes cool but in such an effortless way.
We loved the support of home grown Scandinavian brands. Whether you were in a big department store or in a tiny boutique you were never far from some of our favourites; muuto, ferm living, hay, menu, sagaform, by lassen, gabi, marimekko, normann copenhagen, littala, string, broste..just endless. Our creative heads were brimming with ideas ready for a new season’s development of interior wares.
On the eastern side of Sodermalm we came across a great fashion and interior store called grandpa, unlike its namesake it has a fresh, youthful feel but with that same timeless style that the Swede’s offer instinctively. Even in the height of summer we couldn’t resist buying a jumper – ridiculous really, but when the cold weather sets in, I think we’ll be rather smug (and snug).
We left feeling inspired and in wonder of their laid back lifestyle, promising that we too would strive to return with the right life, work and home balance. We even discussed the possibility of moving there…someday…