Decorex, 17-19 November 2020

November 11, 2020

Although we can't escape 2020, an inspiring figurative ‘great escape’ is possible for those who attend the digital version of London's renowned Decorex design fair

Decorex describes its 2020 three-day inaugural digital fair as an opportunity to ‘discover, source, meet, experience’. The first digital event in Decorex’s 42-year history, the total experience is designed to be a seamless version of IRL (although we will miss IRL meetings at the hub of Decorex—its famous champagne bar) and to retain Decorex’s reputation as the place to discover unrivalled design. 

Highlights of the fair include sixty speakers, networking opportunities, product sourcing, one-to-one meetings, and five immersive experiences including The Great Escapes 360º; an impressive VR experience where five British design studios—Elicyon, Dauley Design, Campbell-Rey, Louise Wicksteed, and VSP Interiors—present conceptual interiors that can be engaged via an easy-to-navigate interface. Rug exhibitors include Zollanvari, Ateliers Pinton, and Ferreira de Sá, Portugal’s finest hand-made rug company founded in 1946.

Design-Nation makes a welcome return to Decorex as another highlight of the fair. This year Design-Nation presents new collections that reflect the theme ‘Design Signatures’ from thirteen British designers who represent the whole of the United Kingdom from Cornwall all the way north to the Shetland Islands. 

Here COVER previews a few rug and textile highlights from the fair:

Zollanvari International 

<em>Impressionist Landscapes of My Fatherland<em> by Zollanvari Studio Shiraz

Based in Zurich, venerable rug company Zollanvari International introduces new designs at Decorex 2020 including the Lion Collection created by Zollanvari Studio Shiraz. Along with new releases, Zollanvari present selected bestsellers from their collections of gabbehs, designer carpets, kilims, zillus, zigorats, transitional formal carpets, silk & wool Esfahan designs and mafrash coffers from their Home Decor collection.

A COVER favourite is the rug titled Impressionist Landscapes of My Fatherland—a bird’s eye view of a colourful patchwork landscape that reminds us of Heinz Edelmann’s psychedelic ‘Pepperland’ designs for the famous 1960s Beatles film Yellow Submarine.

Ateliers Pinton

<em>Paon de Nuit<em> Joséphine Pinton for Ateliers Pinton

Renowned since 1867 for their Aubusson tapestries and rugs hand-woven on low warp looms at their workshop in Felletin, France, Ateliers Pinton continue to create exceptional weaves. The company’s two main product lines are luxury weaves and PINTON Éditions devoted to contemporary woven art as expressed in an evocative aurora borealis-like rug woven in bamboo and metallic yarns designed by Marion Delgoulet of Ateliers Pinton, and in a striking peacock feather rug designed by Joséphine Pinton.

Pamela Print by Susannah Weiland at Design-Nation

<em>Altitude Cent<em> Pamela Print by Susannah Weiland

Weiland is a hand-weaver who pairs fourteen years’ weaving experience for some of fashion’s most well-known brands with her dedication to sustainable production. She founded her studio in 2017 to reflect her dedication to the sustainable slow textile movement. Her weaving Altitude Cent—available as a wall hanging or cushion—draws design inspiration from Art Deco and the Bauhaus. Hand-woven in soft merino wool, Altitude Cent is a double cloth woven on a dobby floor loom.

KULU by Emma Fallon at Design-Nation

<em>Shadow Tissues<em> KULU

Fallon specialises in the weave and print of luxury textiles. She merges traditional techniques with digital processes to create hand-woven fabrics with screen printed embellishments. Fallon also produces a digitally designed jacquard weave collection. Environmental and social impact of design are paramount to Fallon and she uses only natural fibres and sustainable processes including natural dyes. 

For Design-Nation, KULU presents jacquard fabrics with designs inspired by Fallon’s seven hundred mile cycle ride through the North of England and the Western Isles of Scotland. The collection is woven in silk, linen and cashmere from textile industry surplus yarns. KULU also presents a hand-woven collection inspired by a Victorian textile process called Shadow Tissues that merges screen print with weaving, a technique achieved by screen printing the warp threads before weaving the cloth. Fallon interprets this traditional technique with a contemporary eye, and embellishes the cloth after weaving with additional layers of print.

John England

Irish linen jacquard weavers since 1962, John England is a B2B company in Northern Ireland. Their new fabric collection Hempy Range 2021, woven from sustainable, natural (undyed) blends of hemp with other natural fibres such as linen and available in widths up to 300 cm is one of their Decorex highlights. Hemp is a fibre to watch—fast-growing, high yield, requires very little water, and free from herbicides, pesticides, synthetic fertilizers and GMO seeds. It’s also inherently anti-microbial.

The natural colourations of the Hempy Range literally reflect the weather in Northern Ireland. If it’s a wet summer the natural fibre colour will be darker than it is after a hot, sunny summer. Asked to comment on the surge in interest in hemp and linen, a John England representative told COVER, ‘the sustainable fabrics trade has bloomed even more so during coronavirus lockdown. We have quite a lot of clients interested in our Linen/Hemp range. The ever growing pressure to change our ways to prevent climate change is why we aim to be global trend setters in the production of hemp and linen fabrics and why we believe these textiles will be the norm in the near future.’

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