London Design Festival 2019: The Best New Products at Designjunction

London Design Festival 2019: The Best New Products at Designjunction

By Mandi Keighran
Designjunction is one of the most anticipated exhibitions at the London Design Festival, showcasing contemporary design from around the world. These are the best new products of 2019.

The London Design Festival (14-22 September) is one of the biggest events on the global design calendar—and the Designjunction exhibition is a must-see destination to discover new furniture, lighting and design from over 200 global brands. Now in its ninth year, the exhibition returns to two sites at Coal Drops Yard in Kings Cross, the retail district designed by Thomas Heatherwick that opened last year.

This is our pick of new products launched at Designjunction in 2019—from clever bags and eco-friendly vases to previously unseen pieces from the archive of a midcentury master.

Kodo Lounge Sofa by Vincent Sheppard

Woven furniture was a big trend at this year's London Design Festival. The Kodo lounge sofa, designed by Studio Segers for Belgian furniture brand Vincent Sheppard, was one of our favorites. Woven from tactile acrylic rope and featuring piles of quick-dry cushions in on-trend muted hues, the all-weather sofa brings a refined tropical vibe to outdoor spaces.

Light My Table is another fun piece Vincent Sheppard launched at Designjunction. Designed by Mieke De Maeyer at Studiomie as a kind of "mobile architecture," this string of table lights on a powder-coated steel frame simply clamps to the edges of a table. The resulting roof of light adds a festive touch and cozy atmosphere to the setting.

British designer James Burleigh has been making furniture for over 20 years—but this year sees the launch of his studio’s very first credenza. Like the brand’s signature collection, Hopper is crafted from solid ply, oak, or walnut which is then laminated in a durable finish with a choice of over 100 colors. The configuration is completely customizable, with two to five doors available.

London-based design studio LAYER, run by Benjamin Hubert, has partnered with Hong Kong start-up Oda to launch Hop. The set of modular bags is designed to adapt to your needs, from everyday commuting to weekends away. True to its name, Hop comes in two parts—a backpack and a hard-shell messenger bag—that can be magnetically fixed together in "hop" mode to form a single piece of carry-on luggage.

2019 marks the 100th anniversary of the Bauhaus movement—and designers at London Design Festival took note. One of our favorite Bauhaus-inspired pieces was the FF Chair by Ida Linea Hildebrand of Scandinavian design duo Friends & Founders. The minimalist chair has removable cushions and a sleek chrome tubular frame that celebrates the geometric abstraction of the period.

Australian designer Ross Didier launched an outdoor edition of his popular Fable collection. Each piece in the collection—which includes stools, chairs, tables, and storage—is pared back to its most essential form, taking inspiration from the simplicity of objects found in children’s folk tales. While the original collection is crafted from solid oak, the new outdoor collection has been fabricated from aluminum and stainless steel.

The Canopy collection of glassware by LSA International was one of our favorite eco-friendly products at this year’s festival. Created in collaboration with the Eden Project—the world’s largest indoor rainforest, housed in tropical biomes in Cornwall—each piece is made of 100% recycled glass. The forms are inspired by the Eden Project’s Biomes and the collection includes terrariums, planters, and clever self-watering vases.

Verner Panton was one of the most iconic designers of the 20th century—his bold and organic retro-future aesthetic defined a period. But it seems there was another, more linear, side to the Danish designer. At Designjunction, Verpan launched three previously unseen products—two lamps and a chair—based on archived sketches by Panton. The elegant Reflect lamp casts light upward toward a white disc to diffuse light throughout its surroundings.

The new VG&P mirror by British designer Ed Carpenter, design director at Very Good & Proper, is a bright yellow pop of color with a fun yet minimal form.

Very Good & Proper also launched Dan Schofield’s Valley cabinet, a timber storage unit with clean lines and a recessed top. A new version of the popular Oval Armchair with a metal frame was also on display. The original chair launched at Designjunction last year and featured formed plywood sides with integrated armrests.

Designed by Hans Thyge & Co for Icons of Denmark, Crossover is—as its name suggests—a combination of functional task chair and refined meeting chair. The resulting chair responds to the body’s natural movements and has just two manual adjustments, height and tilt, to keep things simple. This softer take on a task chair makes it perfect for the home office.

The ScallopEd bench might be crafted from solid oak, but thanks to a clever scalloped detail in its legs it remains visually light—making it perfect for smaller spaces. British craftsman Ted Jeffries of TedWood took inspiration from the English oak trees that surround his studio on the UK’s South Coast. Each piece in the ScallopEd collection is completely customizable, and four different timber treatments can be mixed and matched as desired.

Tapping into the needs of "generation rent," Henning Stummel Architects have expanded their popular Nomad.London collection of British-made flat-pack furniture. Model 19 is lighter and more compact than the first collection, and still easier to assemble than IKEA furniture—no glue, no screws, no tools. Each chair is cut from a single sheet of birch plywood, and the five pieces simply slot together in minutes.

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