Interiors UK is set to announce this year’s finalists for the New Design Britain awards in the coming weeks. In the meantime, Furniture News takes a look at what some of the previous winners are up to following their success at the show …

The New Design Britain Awards at Interiors UK, organised by UBM Live Built Environment, is one of the most important competitions for young design talent, giving recognition to students for their innovative designs, and celebrating the future of the furniture design industry. 

Interiors UK brings new designers and the industry together, providing multiple opportunities for their much-loved ideas to be brought to market. One of the best examples is Daniel Schofield’s What A Corker mirror. A finalist in 2013, it was subsequently picked up by the buyers at Heal's.

Other successes include James Uren, who won with the Luso Lounger. Following the show, he has been fortunate to make direct sales of the lounger, most notably selling to Mary Portas and House of Fraser for their Manchester and Glasgow shop fits.

Things are going from strength to strength for James, who says: “There are some exciting plans ahead this year, all in the early stages, but I hope to be able to make a further announcement soon.

“I am so thankful, as Interiors UK gave me the platform to make those all-important industry contacts and gain confidence in my designs. It was a great learning curve and my advice to this year's students is to make every minute count.” 

"Interiors UK offers an unrivalled opportunity for new designers to showcase their items to key retailers in the industry”

Alex MacMaster won the competition in 2011 with his Iris Pendant light. He has since gone on to have success with his own company, MacMaster Design, specialising in contemporary lighting and furniture. Following the awards, Alex has launched several new ranges including an enhancement on The Bloom range which now comes in three forms – Round, Oval and Long (pictured) – allowing light to travel through and along the thin leaves, creating a graduated display of colour and warmth.

Alex comments: “Since the show I have launched several new ranges and have been lucky enough to showcase my work in many countries. I am fortunate that Interiors UK gave me the platform to get my designs recognised, nurtured the inspiration behind my work and gave me the reassurance needed to work in the industry.”

Students enter the New Design Britain Awards for a chance to have their designs and products displayed to key retailers and industry figures at the show in January. This year there are four categories:

1. Furnishing accessories: Lighting, tableware, decorative and soft furnishings

2. Surface coverings: Surfaces for wall and ceiling

3. Furniture: Cabinet, bedroom, kitchen – internal and external furniture, and

4. Fabrics: Textiles and fabrics for curtains and upholstery

Suzie Ager, event director, Interiors UK, says: “ We look forward to hosting the finalists and judges at the show in January and are pleased to be able to show continued support for up-and-coming talent, that needs that all-important stepping stone to industry.

"Interiors UK offers an unrivalled opportunity for new designers to showcase their items to key retailers in the industry.”

For more information, or to register for a complimentary ticket, visit the Interiors UK website.