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Clerkenwell Design Week

May 21, 2012

Design events and festivals come in many guises these days – and they can be good, bad and sometimes disappointing. This week’s offering, Clerkenwell Design Week, is firmly in the first camp – it is probably the annual design events that I enjoy the most. Just a short hop from our office in Islington I plan to be spending a large portion of this week discovering what the festival has to offer this year.

The festival HQ will once again be the Farmiloe Building. Dating back to 1868 this building once housed the lead and glass works of G Farmiloes and Sons until 1999. Many memories of the past are still visible in the fabric of the building. Recently it has become an exhibition space – or you may also recognize it from scenes from Batman, Sherlock Holmes or Poirot.

I am looking forward to seeing ex.t at Clerkenwell, I saw their products at Milan recently and loved them. It is also good to see Young & Norgate in the Farmiloe Building this year, I first discovered them at Clerkenwell last year – they make gorgeous furniture. Other companies in the Farmiloe this year include furniture manufacturers Another Country, lighting manufacturer Örsjö and furniture company James.

The House of Detention is another exhibition space used. A destination in its own right it was previously a prison. This is where you can often discover smaller new companies. Look out for lighting from Fay McCaul and furniture from Morphos among the exhibitors here.

2012 sees the addition of a new exhibition space, the historic Order of St Johns. I’ve visited this amazing venue recently – the architecture and history make it worth a trip for the venue alone. I’m really pleased to see Splinterworks will be exhibiting here, a favourite company from Decorex last year.

Clerkenwell isn’t just about these 3 venues, the whole area explodes with design. The streets around St John Street are home to many fantastic showrooms. Some of my favourites involved include Ochre, Interface and Milliken. There is a host of events held at the showrooms.

The festival is open from Tuesday until Thursday and it has late viewings so everyone can come along. I will be featuring my discoveries later this week – make sure you come back later this week, and also let me know what you liked?

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