It’s not rare for me to work on a weekend, but it is rare for me to pop to London and back again in a day for work on Sunday. To be honest, it’s hard for me to call this kind of thing work when it means me meeting new people, discovering brands I’ve never heard of before and taking snaps of inspiring homeware and interiors.
Yesterday was filled with just that. I jumped on an early morning train down to Top Drawer – a homeware, gift, fashion and stationery tradeshow held at London’s Olympia. Having worked in the fashion industry for so long, I’d already visited Top Drawer a number of times but this year was different.
For a/w 18, Apartment Number 4 became an official media partner to the show, alongside some well-known publications and websites. What does a media partnership entail you might ask? Well, it allows me to work with the show to handpick a curated collection of brands that have the Apartment Number 4 stamp of style, and showcase here on my blog and across social media. The aim is to hopefully bring new brands to your attention, names which you might not have discovered otherwise.
Which leads me seamlessly on to my 18 product highlights for the a/w 18 season, starting with Light & Living pictured above. A Dutch brand specialising in, you guessed it, lighting, this brand had the most incredible Moroccan inspired lantern displays as you can see above. If nothing else, I took away plenty of styling ideas for forthcoming shoots.
Scandinavian brand, Also Home, didn’t disappoint when it came to presenting its latest homeware and soft furnishing collection – I’m not sure this bedroom could look any more Hygge if it tried. From natural wood finishes to linen and faux fur, the focus was on textures this season and tactile ones at that.
In the Fashion section, Wolf & Moon showcased its mix of graphic, modern jewellery which is handmade in the heart of London by founder Hannah Davis and a team of artisans. I absolutely love these statement earrings, with prices starting at £22 for stud designs.
A new discovery for me was Raine & Humble, an Australian brand which was founded back in 2007. With a bohemian vibe running throughout the collection, shoppers can expect to find tasselled cushions, woven baskets, kitchenware, pretty floral prints and much more.
Linda Bloomfield is an artisan I stumbled across pretty much as soon as I walked into the show. Creating the most beautiful pottery, the collection is filled with pieces using tactile satin matt glaze on the outside and colour of the inside. Linda explained how she makes her own range of glazes and is particularly interested in the translucent colours obtained using oxides rather than commercial stains, to create this beautiful collection. Of course, the blush pink was going to catch my eye.
If you haven’t heard me talk about Garden Trading on the blog, you most certainly will have spotted it in 4 Magazine. I’m a huge fan of this British brand, not only because their products are beautifully crafted, but the price points are amazing. Just take a look at the website and see for yourself – type in “cleaning” into the search bar and thank me later.
Although born out of the need for high-quality wipe clean leather aprons, Dutch label Witloft has since expanded its leather offer to include handcrafted placemats, napkin holders, knife protectors, tool pouch, and for this season, a leather gym mat perfect for nursery’s and outside.
Yes, these flowers are artificial. It’s hard to believe isn’t it, but I fell in love with Amaranthine Blooms instantly. This is definitely a more premium brand on offer, but considering the quality and choice, it’s easy to understand the higher price point. If you sign up for the brand’s newsletter, however, you can get 15% off your first order.
Another Australian label available at the show was Sol Cups. Hand-blown glass cups and bottles, the brand was designed to help the environment by stopping the use of plastic completely. Moving people away from the throwaway mindset, these glass designs come in either a 16oz cup (pictured) or an 850ml bottle, both with a silicone sleeve.
One of the most stylish cleaning products I’ve come across, British brand Tincture focuses on natural, chemical-free products and was established by sisters Angelika Davenport and Anastasia Brozler in the Norfolk countryside. Just look at that packaging – these are definitely cleaning products that don’t have to be hidden away in a basket under the sink.
As seen on Great British Bakeoff no less, Yvonne Ellen is a homeware brand which focuses on tableware, gifts and stationery. As soon as I saw these co-ordinating bone china plates, with their illustrated designs, I was in love – I just need a dinner party to be able to buy some for now.
I’m a huge fan of delicate jewellery, which is probably why Cabbage White England stood out almost instantly to me. Founded in 2010 by Kelly Smithson, every style is available in sterling silver, gold and rose gold – I love how the use of stars elevate everyday hoops to something a little more special.
As you’ll probably have guessed from my own home, I’m a huge fan of statement artwork and these foil creations from Catherine Colebrook only fueled that love more. Printed on wood, these personalised prints would make the perfect gift for someone. That someone being me.
You may already be familiar with Nkuku, but if you’re not let me introduce this ethical homeware brand. Working with artisans from all over the world, the brand combines traditional skills with natural materials to create some amazing homeware and decorative additions. One worth bookmarking that’s for sure.
Formed in 2010 by husband and wife, David and Faye Aspinall, Chase & Wonder has experienced amazing growth in the UK since its launch. Stocked in stores such as Liberty of London, Harrods, and Fortnum and Mason, it’s clear to see why people have fallen in love with the eclectic brand with its signature monochrome illustrations.
Contemporary leathergoods brand, Hirsch & Kirsch caught my eye instantly with its metallic leather plant pouches and handbags. Crafted in north east Somerset, the label focuses on a ‘Modern Craft’ aesthetic through minimalist shapes paired with bold graphic details, surface pattern and contrasting colours, producing visually striking pieces.
Finally, I had to include pretty stationery in here somewhere didn’t I. And Portico Designs didn’t fail to impress with this notebook wall filled with incredible prints and patterns. Now if only I could have my own notebook wall at home in my office. Hang on, that might be an idea…
I hope more than anything, you’ve discovered a new label you like in this round-up of my 18 highlights from Top Drawer. If you’re in London today or tomorrow, the show will be open for you to attend. Find out more information over on the website right here.