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Milan Design Week is fast approaching for another year, and as design aficionados, we’re keen to see how this season is going to pan out for interiors and product design alike. As one of the first major design weeks of the year, the 7-day long celebration of all things creative acts as a chance for designers to launch new products, test out prototypes and engage with an audience of design professionals, press and potential collaborators.
One of the main purposes of visiting Milan Design Week is to spot what’s coming in the interiors world first hand, especially at Salone del Mobile.Milano, the associated trade show. While we don’t buy into trends here at AUTHOR, we do like to look at how brands present, the lifestyles they choose to represent and, of course, for luxury decorative inspiration and British design.
What is Salone del Mobile?
Salone del Mobile.Milano was the origin of Milan Design Week and this year will mark the 58th edition. The event will be held from 9th-14th April at Milan’s Rho showgrounds; a vast exhibition space set across 205,000 square-metres, forcing you to check your steps after every visit. To give you an idea of numbers, last year over 430,000 attendees from 188 different countries visited with design on the mind.
This year, the biennial Euroluce lighting exhibition and Workplace3.0 exhibitions will return alongside 550 emerging SaloneSatellite designers and more than 2,350 exhibitors across the site. If you’re visiting Salone del Mobile this month, here’s our top picks of luxury British brands to make sure you catch:
Bert Frank is a British luxury lighting brand, founded in 2013 by designer Robbie Llewellyn and metalwork factory owner Adam Yeats. The brand draws influences from design codes of the industrial era but with a modern twist, and we adore the simplistic spin on history.
Find Bert Frank: HALL 9 STAND E12
Porta Romana’s ambition is to create beautiful and inspiring lighting pieces to be loved, something which we value highly at AUTHOR. In fact, we love them so much that we feature a range of their luxury interior furniture on our website. The Porta Romana studio achieves wonderful specialist finishes on its products. We admire the ingenious, original ideas in each year’s new collection and can’t wait to see the latest product launches.
Find Porta Romana: HALL 9 / STAND E10
Innermost will be launching a new and exciting lighting collection at Euroluce 2019, focusing on a mix of technology and vibrant new aesthetics. This year, they’re launching three new pendant designs, all named after famed London boroughs: Portobello, Hoxton and Chelsea. Give Innermost’s stand a visit for unique character and design.
Find Innermost: HALL 11, STAND D27
Chris and Clare Turner founded CTO Lighting in 1998 and have since championed these guiding principles of designing lights: uncompromising quality, using only the finest materials and working with elite British craftsmen. Similarly aligned to our own quality standards, the brand symbolises elegance and excellence in British design manufacturing.
Find CTO Lighting: HALL 9, STAND D07
Ercol is another classic British furniture design company and since 1920 the brand has practised design for comfort, design for function and design for beauty. Form is just as important as function. At this year’s Salone, expect to see classic and contemporary combine with product launches in collaboration with ATLASON/ studio and Copenhagen-based Norm Architects.
Find Ercol: S.Project HALL 22 STAND B22
What about the best of the rest at Milan Design Week 2019?
Salone del Mobile is not the only happening during the week commencing the 9th April. Fuorisalone is the set of events distributed in different areas of Milan on the same days when the fair takes place, similar to our own London Design Festival. It started spontaneously early in the 1980s and now a total of eleven zones and huge presentations from some of the most well-known design brands in the world. The three main areas to take into account when planning are Brera Design District, Tortona and Ventura Central.
Expect to discover product design, interior design, graphic design, automotive, technology, telecommunications, art, fashion and food. Here’s some of the luxury design we’re looking forward to seeing most.
Tom Dixon’s Manzoni Restaurant
Tom Dixon always puts on a grand show for Milan, but last year the British designer had a break in order to define his next move. This year, the brand has announced the opening of a permanent restaurant and showroom in Milan called The Manzoni, allowing for something a little less temporary. Something we always like to hear.
The 100-cover restaurant, designed by Dixon’s Design Research Studio opens next month and will feature new products designed Dixon including a series of upholstered chairs called Fat, the Spring series of pendant lamps, and Opal translucent globe lights.
Find it: 5 Via Manzoni
Spazio Rossana Orlandi
A visit to the gallery of Rossana Orlandi is an absolute must in our opinion. The former tie and foulard factory has been transformed into an exhibition space dedicated to the handcrafted and luxury design. Craftsmanship is at the core of the display thanks to the personal selection by gallerist and talent scout, Rossana Orlandi. One of our personal picks to watch out for is Ini Archibong’s collection for furniture brand Sé.
De Cotiis x Carpenters Workshop Gallery
Milan-based architect and designer Vincenzo De Cotiis will display luxury design pieces by Carpenters Workshop Gallery designers in his gallery until 20th July this year, so a perfect pick for those staying in the Italia capital a little longer. The showcase will display De Cotiis’ own pieces in dialogue with works by Maarten Baas, Wendell Castle, Rick Owens and more.
Find it: Vincenzo De Cotiis Gallery, via Carlo de Cristoforis, 14
If you’re looking for diversity, Zona Tortona is a lively area packed with independent fashion stores and studios. There’s plenty to see in a smaller area and inspiration can strike in the most unusual of forms. This year promised to be fueled by a mix of big names, new proposals, product and service innovation, technology and tradition. Designboom recently described the area as “a magnifying glass focusing on contemporary life and the spirit of the times. The event is a reflection of reality, a narrative tool that offers the public an unprecedented perspective and interpretation of modem life.”
Find it: Tortona District, Milan
Are you going to Milan Design Week 2019? Let us know! Alternatively, if you’d like to know more about our own offerings, the AUTHOR team is here to advise on any aspects of design and furnishing. If you would like any further advice or interior design tips on how to make the most of your interior space, please do get in touch.
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