MATERIALITY IN YOUR HOME - "I love that material, girl"

10-03-2017

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A focus on our use of materials for the bespoke elements of our latest interior design project.

Suggested listening (to enhance your blog reading experience)

Annie Lennox – Walking on Broken Glass

We have a long-running catchphrase in our studio that was born out of our mutual passion for RuPaul's DragRace (if you don't already know it, catch up on Netflix) and the fact that there are always samples of interesting new surfaces and materials laying around the place or pinned to the walls. “I love that material, Girl” has replaced the usual pleasantries when our friend pops over to our studio to see what we've been up to. 

After our last blog about playful use of materials in product design we wanted to focus in on some of the details of our latest interior design project - in particular, the materials used on the bespoke elements of the design.

We've always loved working with plywood and walnut and Formica (see our Trilby Road project or Stella & Dot) but on this project we harnessed our most inquisitive side and looked to use materials that were new or unexpected. Many of which we have found on our trips to various trade shows and exhibitions and have been waiting for just the right project to use them in. 

And these were just the clients - brave, lively, up for a challenge.

We encouraged them to look a little deeper at their surfaces and finishes. The things you touch each day. The finishes you look at. The base structure of a room doesn't always have to be neutral, allowing room for the pieces to sing. Sometimes the materials you use for fitted joinery, flooring, even sinks, can be the star. It just takes a little more bravery.

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First up the use of Smile plastics, limited edition, explorer in black and white with the odd fleck of colour or foil to give it life. It's our new favourite material made from recycled plastic and it comes in all sorts of different colours and finishes that are suitable for use in your home.

Here we've gone for a bespoke dining table, made by Lycan Designs. It's a total star piece in this project.

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The joinery in the dining room is made from Valchromat (a type of particle board) that is coloured throughout (here we've used blue). Its' the most incredible material, with a subtle movement in the colour that makes it look almost concrete-like.

The built in drinks cabinet has a cheeky treat of a combo inside, to wow the guests with an after dinner cocktail. Check it out!

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In the master bathroom, the sinks had to be special and so we went for these bowl-like basins in black by Kast concrete. They are made to order so each one is unique in its patina and placed on this recycled plastic vanity unit we had made, they look so refined, tying the materials from the rest of the house into the bathroom too.

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Actual material, Girl! – The fabrics used on this project were commissioned in bespoke colours from a range of designs, more typically used as fashion fabric, by Amelia graham, who you may have noticed in one of our earlier projects (Brixton Scandi). The beauty of using bespoke colour ways here was that we were able to control how this fabric brings different complex colour elements together, as seen in the alcove storage seat in the open plan living space.

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Even the artwork has been approached in a different way, painted directly onto a plywood circle, this work by local artist, Supermundane, pulls the whole scheme together with its bold clash of colours and strong form.

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So get creative with the skin on the bones of your interior and take another look at materiality rather than material things (although they can be fun too ;) x 

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