Monthly Archives: April 2016

’Absurd Bird’ By DesignLSM

Posted on April 29, 2016 by Annalisa

We love this latest project from hospitality design specialists DesignLSM.

Based in Spitalfields, London, the innovative restaurant concept offers the humble delights of spatch-cocked smoked chicken with an ‘Absurd’ twist introducing city diners to the unusual pairings of ‘chicken and waffle’ and ‘sweet potato marshmallow bake’.

Founded by an American Chef and Young Entrepreneur the story behind Absurd Bird is inspired by an amusing tale of the adventure of two rebellious birds who decide to jail break out of the cuckoo’s nest and embark on a memorable journey together. As the brand’s story slowly unfolds the true essence of Absurd Bird is revealed.

DesignLSM’s brief was to capture Absurd Bird’s playful identity and reflect the quirkiness of the menu with a modern yet nostalgic design inspired by the backwaters of America’s deep south.

The overall concept is set across two floors combining a warm and rustic all-day dining environment on the ground floor with a relaxed and intimate evening cocktail bar in the basement.

In the upstairs restaurant the reclaimed wooden seating, taken from old US barns, combined with corrugated timber panels brings a raw aesthetic into the space which is bought to live with playful touches of flannel shirt upholstery and vibrant neon signage.

The story continues through bespoke birch tree chandeliers, up-lit birdhouses and bizarre binocular spotlights suspended over the cement tables, each of which are brandished with bird footprints left by the feathery outlaws on their chaotic journey.

The absurdness ventures into the restroom space where our interiors team designed the weird and wonderful feature of a suitcase vanity unit, which when opened displays a bird watcher’s map illustrating the brand’s story further.

In contrast the basement design is reminiscent of an authentic 1920’s speakeasy bar with a luxurious yet worn feel throughout the space. The bar is a prominent feature designed with a grand marble top, brass trim and beautifully ornate wooden frontage decorated with a distressed paint effect.

The decadent booths are framed by luxurious fabrics and bespoke wallpaper that depicts vintage oil paintings – a perfectly intimate spot to enjoy a ‘moonshine’ cocktail whilst indulging in a spot of ornithology.


ferm LIVING and knit designer Rikke Jo Tholstrup in an exclusive collaboration

Posted on April 15, 2016 by Annalisa

The Danish knit-artist Rikke Jo Tholstrup, has created a limited range of wooden paddles with knit covers for ferm LIVING which will be sold exclusively on

The Paddle People is a series of decorative wooden paddles with knit covers. The patterns of the knit is layered and graphic, inspired by patterns and sculpture from the Indigenous art of North America. 

The entire piece – wood to knit – is handmade and sourced in Denmark, with the knitted pieces being produced in a 1950s knitwear factory in western Denmark.

“We are very happy about the pieces Rikke has created for us. Just like us, she is concerned with craftsmanship and creativity which has been breeding ground for a good, creative collaboration”, explains Trine Andersen, designer and founder of ferm LIVING.

“I think that the Paddle People are decorative, so it’s really how you fit it into your space”, Rikke says. “The paddles are textural, so I envision them in a room with other art pieces, like prints framed on the wall. They’ll add something physical to that kind of space that I think will look incredible. Once you understand the process of designing and creating the paddles, there’s also an aspect of craftsmanship that makes them not only decorative but also narrative – as with every great addition to your home, there’s a story to be told.”

The paddles people come in five different designs and there are ten of each available.

They will retail at EUR 310 / DKK 2300.


The Rug Company

Posted on April 8, 2016 by Annalisa

Gator by Bill Amberg

I recently attended a delightful evening to launch the Rug Company’s new rug in collaboration with Bill Amberg. The event was hosted Christopher & Suzanne Sharp, founders of The Rug Company at their Kings Road showroom.

During the evening Kelvyn Smith from Smith Rules demonstrated the technique for transferring the skins using letterpress to paper, which will then be hand weaved into the beautiful rugs we saw on display.

“One of the more unusual and distinctive elements of leather as a material is the vast array of textures. Some are immediately identifiable, some are more curious and unusual. Capturing their uniqueness is an interesting challenge as each skin reflects the life of the animal, making it completely unique. Having worked with letterpress printer. Kelvyn Smith at Smith Rules on previous projects, I began to think this might be a way of reproducing the individual qualities of leather.’’

Kelvyn did various experiments to get a perfect print of the surface of a number of different skins, lifting the paper to even out the skin’s natural difference in thickness and density. ”It is good to be working with Christopher Sharp and the team at The Rug Company again, developing the materials, shades and construction for the rug and lifting it from a pattern to a real reflection of an animal’s character.’’ Bill Amberg

The new Gator rug by Bill Amberg is available in a number of sizes exclusively from The Rug Company showrooms. It can also be custom ordered in shape, size, colour or scale to suit any specific requirements.

Gator by Bill Amberg for The Rug Company:

Hand knotted Tibetan wool and silk  2.74×1.83m £5,465 or £1,090/m2

Stockist information:
555 King’s Road
London SW6 2EB
Tel: 020 7384 0980



Ballet Pendant Lamp

Posted on April 1, 2016 by Annalisa

Founded 20 years ago in Galicia, Spain, lighting company Arturo Álvarez specialises in handmade lamps for hospitality projects including lighting solutions for hotel chains including Hilton, Sheraton and Melia.

‘Ballet’ is a new design from the studio created in collaboration with product designer Héctor Serrano who together with Arturo Álvarez has produced this pretty light using SIMETECH®, a steel mesh covered with silicone.

SIMETECH®, gives the designer the flexibility to create graceful forms which bring the lamps to life, ‘its asymmetry makes its forms change depending on the point of view. … a constant dance of light and shadows”.

Ballet comes in white, grey, beige, yellow or orange.