This year marks the second annual May Design Series event, a trade-only interior design exhibition taking place at the London ExCeL between Sunday 18th and Tuesday 20th of May. From the contemporary to the classic, the antique to the modern, the May Design Series is a showcase of some of the world’s best mid- to high- end interior design products and services.
There are five different sectors covered at the May Design Series: The Furniture Show, Lighting, Décor, Kitchen & Bathroom, and DX (Design Excellence). This means that there is plenty of crossover between several different aspects of interior design, allowing beginners and experts alike to gain exposure to things they may never have thought of or seen before.
The May Design Series has already seen some exciting developments in its young life. For one, Interiors UK – which was previously held at the Birmingham NEC in January – has changed venue and become The Furniture Show. Why the move? Simply to catch the end of the launch season, when the products have been fully tested and Autumn/Winter lines are ready to be properly introduced – and to get away from the intensity of the January sales. May is also the peak of the interiors retail season, making it the perfect time to meet and do business with traders and clients the world over.
So, what’s on display at The Furniture Show? Plenty of sofas and chairs, cabinets, luxurious fabrics, and a whole plethora of bedroom, outdoor and dining furnishings from a huge range of companies. There will be some brilliant home entertainment units from Gwinner International, functional apparatus such as heavy-duty all-weather covers from Westminster Teak, and much more besides.
Gallery Direct, the UK’s leading distributor of wall décor, will undoubtedly lead the way in the décor sector. For something slightly more specialised – boutique even – there will be companies like Art Hide, who make most of their products exclusively from ethically sourced leather. The Art Group is another interesting outfit, as it publishes and prints original canvases from artists across the globe. Trend GB will likely show off its impressive mosaic bathroom tiling, whilst Ramezani will be displaying its stunning variety of handmade rugs, carpets and tapestries.
Lighting is one of the most important aspects of interior design, and can make already-beautiful rooms dazzle. This year’s lighting sector is co-organised by the magazines mondo*arc and darc. However, it will not be just lighting for homes on display here, but also lighting for buildings and public spaces. Applelec‘s prize-winning LED light sheet is one of the company’s most outstanding pieces of work, but their LED ribbon lights, LED neon flex lights, variomount and borderline lights are just as impressive, and will help inspire new and creative ideas from designers of all backgrounds. Indeed, LED lights are a major design concept this year, with iGuzzini and Spanlite coming up with some rather amazing works.
The kitchen and bathroom are arguably two of the most important rooms in the house. Where other rooms can sometimes get away with being a little wacky or unconventional, kitchens and bathrooms need a distinctly easy-to-use element to them. The Vintage Fridge Company combine functionality with a fun, pre-mod-con larder-style design, whilst Ripples will more than likely make onlookers drool at their highly individualised, bespoke bathroom fittings.
For something purely functional, on display will be Envirotec‘s leak-free shower enclosures, which integrate the walls into the design at the moulding stage. This prevents the need for joins at the back of the shower tray and therefore diminishes the chances of any leaks. This design has been on the US market for quite some time, but has only recently been seen throughout Europe.
Lastly, we come to the DX sector, which constitutes the May Design Series’ content hub. This is also the sector where seminars are held, and where cutting-edge companies come to display their unique and innovative works. Three individuals who have really made an impact in the industry over the past year and who will be exhibiting are: Deirdre Dyson, for her handmade carpets and rugs; Sharon Marston, for her creation of bespoke light installations; and Justin Van Breda, for his general nous for interior design.
Later this month we’ll be reporting back from The May Design Series 2014 with all the latest design, décor and furnishing news, which should give you some inspiration and ideas when its comes to creating perfect interiors in your own home. Stay tuned!