Attracting over 27,000 visitors (audit pending) from 98 countries, including a record numbers of architects and designers, the 21st 100% Design featured 610 exhibitors – a 35% increase on 2014 – across 22,000 sqm of its new home, Olympia London. Paul Farley reports …
A personal highlight of the London Design Festival, 100% Design has turned a corner in recent years, and its offer, although broad, certainly stimulates the senses whilst maintaining commercial heft.
Whilst Olympia proved a little less accessible than Earl’s Court – and certainly felt a good deal smaller that the former, despite the presence of a greater number of exhibitors – the bright, modern surroundings suited the high-concept event perfectly, and served to distance it from the somewhat consumer-oriented layout 100% Design previously adhered to.
Set across five sections – Interiors, Design & Build, Kitchens & Bathrooms, Workplace, and Emerging Brands – the UK’s largest design trade show offered a wealth of talks, installations and trend showcases alongside a strong exhibitor complement.
“The bright, modern surroundings suited the high-concept event perfectly”
My own product highlights included Italian fitted furniture specialist Novamobili’s in-situ apartment display, Tom Raffield’s eye-catching steam-bent wooden lamps, and a collection of peices from the winners of The Furniture Makers’ Design Guild Mark awards – in particular, Cairn Young and Ian Spencer’s Cubrick Cabinet.
Show director William Knight was justifiably pleased by the edition’s performance: “Moving 100% Design to a new venue, for only the second time in its 20-year history, has created a number of opportunities to build on the event’s recent successes since Media 10 acquired the show in 2012.
“Not only did the magnificent surroundings of Olympia London allow us to embrace the hall’s natural light, it also enabled us to revisit the show layout and maintain the ideal balance between an easy-to-navigate show and a series of features to be discovered and experienced.”