The Business

The latest news and pictures from the design sector

Mother London enlists Holloway Li to redesign Shoreditch HQ

Interior Architecture studio Holloway Li has reimagined the renowned Shoreditch office of the independent creative agency Mother. The transformation of the east London space sees it become a flexible work environment, a hub for collaboration and a vibrant arts and entertainment venue.

The ground floor and mezzanine areas have been reconfigured by the London-based studio into a dynamic space that evolves into lunch spots, meeting areas, and an event and exhibition space throughout the day and night. Central to the building, it inspires all of Mother London’s team creative endeavours and embodies the heart and soul of its hosts.

The design ethos aims to enhance the space’s inherent character by infusing narratives into every detail. This approach mirrors Mother’s own work methodology, infusing creativity and resourcefulness into every project.

Holloway Li was briefed to refresh the agency’s existing industrial office space to feel contemporary and inviting, while keeping its distinct ‘Mother’ personality. Holloway Li devised a series of light-touch insertions: the reception desk, mezzanine, kitchen and dining area, which house its red ‘kitchen tables’. The result is a vibrant and cohesive design with a nod to the 1970s.

Haworth Tompkins announced as De La Warr Pavilion architect

Stirling Prize-winning architecture practice Haworth Tompkins has been appointed for the Bexhill Levelling Up Capital Project. The practice, which has an international reputation for intelligent, purposeful design, will be refurbing the Grade I listed De La Warr Pavilion (DLWP).

Lucy Picardo, director at Haworth Tompkins, commented: ‘We are thrilled to have been awarded the opportunity to work alongside Rother District Council and DLWP to develop proposals for the refurbishment of the iconic, modernist, Grade I Listed De La Warr Pavilion.

‘Alongside our experienced and creative team, and with valuable input from the local community, we are looking forward to creating a renewed Pavilion for the arts for staff, performers, exhibitors, and visitors alike.’

Amtico celebrates 60th anniversary

British flooring manufacturer Amtico is celebrating a significant milestone this year as it reaches its 60th anniversary. Since 1964, Amtico has pioneered luxury vinyl tile (LVT) flooring and British manufacturing from its UK HQ and factory in Coventry. To mark the occasion, Amtico has celebrations and activities planned throughout 2024.

The festivities started with a simultaneous cake-cutting across its four UK sites (Coventry, Solihull, Pilot Park and the London studio) as well as its new office and studio in Düsseldorf’s Media Harbour in Germany.

UK management team buys Johnson Tiles from Norcros

Johnson Tiles is moving forward as a standalone business in a management buyout deal agreed with Norcros PLC. The UK management team – comprising managing director Stephen Dixon, commercial director Rich Kelsall and procurement director Jason Bridges – expect full control from late May 2024. It has also announced proposals to move to an entirely outsourced business model with staff being consulted regarding the closure of its manufacturing facility in Tunstall, impacting up to 105 roles in production. The designer, manufacturer and supplier of ceramic and porcelain tiles has been operational in Stoke-on- Trent since 1901.

Interface commits to absolute emission reduction efforts to solve climate crisis

Interface has announced it is focusing on direct carbon reduction and carbon storage to meet the urgency of the climate crisis. The company is aligning its strategy to meet its climate commitments, which sees the business move away from the use of carbon offsets. Beginning in 2025, Interface will repurpose former offset investments to accelerate innovation projects that will result in direct carbon reductions and carbon storage both internally and throughout its supply chain.

Transformation of iconic Heal’s department store complete

Image: Chris WhartonImage: Chris Wharton

Creative real estate developer General Projects, in conjunction with leading global investment firm KKR, have announced the complete transformation of the iconic Heal’s department store on Tottenham Court Road, London. Working with Buckley Gray Yeoman and White Red, along with furniture designers Galvin Brothers, the team have transitioned the celebrated department store into a contemporary home for business use.

The new development sees a combination of old and new, with sympathetic reference to the building’s industrial heritage as the former factory in which Heal’s originally designed, manufactured sold and dispatched its furniture. The newly reimagined spaces preserve and celebrate the mix of historic buildings across the site, home to the furniture brand for more than 200 years.

Oliver Bayliss, managing director at Buckley Gray Yeoman, said: ‘This was an exercise in sensitive tinkering that stitched together a complex set of buildings that are brimming with character. The design approach was to keep Heal’s front and centre, whilst unlocking a range of spaces that can accommodate organisations big and small. There is something for everyone. The interiors took their cue from the original features that we discovered along the way.’  /  /

Chaplins Trade provides best seats in the house

Chaplins Trade has delivered a luxurious furniture and fabric collection to the NinetyThird By Qatar Airways lounge at the O2 Arena, London. Each piece was selected to complement the room’s unique aesthetic while supporting large-scale events. The project, initiated by AEG Europe and designed by Platform Group, sought a consultative furniture supplier to ‘bring the project to life’, while meeting durability and fire regulations.

Timorous Beasties opens new showroom

Timorous Beasties, the Glasgow-based design studio, is set to open a new flagship showroom in the heart of Clerkenwell, London, this May. To celebrate the opening, a special installation of Timorous Beasties’ new Stucco collection (pictured) of elegant wallcoverings, fabrics and accessories will be on display.

The new showroom, previously a lithographic and typesetting printworks, resonates with Timorous Beasties’ heritage and echoes the craft of the brand’s Glasgow handprint studio.

On display will be Timorous Beasties’ full collection of wallpapers, fabrics and home

Lighting unveil for Bromley Town Hall

International lighting design studio Nulty has completed a lighting scheme for Bromley Old Town Hall, as part of a £20m project to restore the architectural and cultural significance of the historic site.

Nulty’s lighting design response supports the wider goals set by architecture practice Cartwright Pickard and interior design studio Fusion Interiors Group, to reclaim the heritage of the Grade II Listed architecture and breathe new life into the flexible coworking space and all-day dining restaurant that now occupy the building.

The scheme balances the need for contemporary lighting interventions and a sensitive design narrative that prioritises reuse. Nulty reviewed archive photographs of the 1906 and 1939 sections of the building, then refurbished and reinstated traditional light fittings to honour the original aspirations of the old town hall.

Bisley joins forces with Mark Product
Bisley has joined forces with Cornwall-based B-Corp, Mark Product. The partnership is the result of a significant investment by Bisley that will enable the Cornish brand, which since 2008 has specialised in designing and manufacturing sustainable furniture, to expand its reach within the workplace sector and will pave the way for enhanced product development, with a focus on sustainable soft seating and outdoor furniture.  /

Harrison launches international design challenge for students: The Harrison School of Design Competition
Global branding, interior design and architecture specialist Harrison has announced the launch of its inaugural design challenge for students to take part in this summer. Launching across the UK and US simultaneously, the School of Design competition gives aspiring designers and architects the opportunity to create a restaurant design concept based on their ideal eating spot. The first place prize is £1,000 plus a two-month paid internship with the Harrison team in Sutton Coldfield, Birmingham. / www.schoolofdesign

New furniture brand Tamart launches during Milan Design Week
A new British furniture brand, founded by the Londonbased, award-winning architect Amos Goldreich, was launched during the Milan Design Week. The brand, called Tamart, honours the work and love story of his late parents, the modernist architects and polymaths, Tamar de Shalit (1932-2009) and Arthur Goldreich (1929-2011). The brand officially launched with a showcase exhibition entitled Tamart: Powered by Love at Design Variations 2024 by Mosca Partners.

New MD for Smeg UK
With more than two decades at the helm of Italian appliance brand Smeg, Mike Giddings is stepping down as its UK MD, with Daniel Hadley taking on the role. With 16 years of experience working for blue-chip organisations, Hadley has joins from Dyson where he led a sales team focusing on geographical expansion across the Middle East and Africa. He commented: ‘I am delighted to join Smeg at such an exciting time for the brand and am keen to continue to develop the UK and Ireland Smeg business.

HOK delivers new BBC Studios Comedy Productions workspace

HOK’s London Interiors team has designed a retro boutique space in which creative writers, directors and actors can collaborate and foster new ideas.

BBC Studios Comedy Productions relocated to new premises in Soho’s iconic Chinatown, and required a refresh and remodelling of its new home to provide a modern workplace that expresses its own distinct identity.

Through the sustainable use of pre-loved, individually sourced, mid-century furniture and period Crittall windows, HOK has brought a feeling of home and familiarity to the workplace, while evoking for visiting clients the ambience of a favourite private members club. This is balanced against the raw, unfinished base-build walls that eloquently reveal and communicate the building’s diverse history.

The space features BBC Comedy artwork, memorabilia and awards, dating from the mid to late 20th century.

Luke Henry-Powell, interior designer at HOK, commented: ‘The design aligns with BBC Studios Comedy Productions’ aim to create a best-in-class workspace to attract and retain top-level creative talent, and enable them to self-actualise. It is less a corporate office, in the traditional sense, than a collaboration hub where the country’s leading writers, performers and producers generate new entertainment ideas for global television and streaming.’

Will you be an FX Awards 2024 winner?

Entries are still open for the FX Design Awards with comedian Marcus Brigstocke now confirmed as this year’s presenter. Submit your entries for your chance to win by Friday 26 July 2024; with categories for architects, specifiers and suppliers we have a opportunities for you to enter your work, whatever sector you’re in!

This year brings a new cohort of judges – experts in their fields and ready to award the very best in each category a coveted FX Design Award, which once again is being supplied by Hi-Macs. Winners will be announced at gala event at the Grosvenor House Hotel, London, on Wednesday 27 November 2024.

Table bookings are now also being taken, so make sure you have your ticket to the party of the year as we celebrate the very best in design. Book early to avoid disappointment and we look forward to celebrating with you this autumn!

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