Trends at Tent 2011

Join the Livingetc team at Tent 2011 where they have reported on the key trends emerging from the East London hub of London Design Festival...

The first day at this year's Tent at the Old Truman Brewery (E1) was packed, initimate and fun.

More than 200 exhibitors from around the world showed everything from 3D-printing to wormeries, with plenty of furniture, fabrics and accessories in between.

Four trends emerged (or to a certain extent, re-emerged): retro modern, wood, 3D/geometrics and playful...

1/5 Livingetc Design Reports: Tent 2011

wooden longneck book shelf

(Image credit: Escape from Sofa)

(Pictured) Escape from Sofa, Longneck bookshelf

2/5 Livingetc Design Reports: Tent 2011

short tail rocking chair with wooden frame and soft grey seat

(Image credit: Escape from Sofa)

Mid-century modern rubbed shoulders with hints of Mad Men tailoring at many of the stands.

We liked how James Uren's Luso lounger managed to look cool and comfy at the same time, while the furniture from, Escape from Sofa, from Istanbul borrowed lines from Danish teak masters but had an added spikiness.

(Pictured) Short Tail rocking chair, Escape from Sofa

3/5 Livingetc Design Reports: Tent 2011

white storage cabinet wooden seat

(Image credit: Stephen Obriain Furniture)

Great craftmanship was shown at Stephen Obriain Furniture (part of the Irish Design Island event), whose Bone chair was as strokeably smooth as driftwood or polished horn.

The sliding, extending bench Raskl from Designed & Made was both clever and beautifully executed, while the Shed sideboard with its clunky lock from Liquidesign was lovingly created for and inspired by designer Cameron Fry's granddad, Cyril (pictured).

4/5 Livingetc Design Reports: Tent 2011

multicolour feather wall decoration

(Image credit: Louise Greenfield)

From Kenichiro Oomori's small felt bag, to the We.Do Studio Shelter installation, 3D geometrics and lines were big.

French Hellokarl Studio's trompe l'oeil shelving system fools the eyes with a tesseract effect, while Louise Greenfield's stunning feather wall decorations Targets, totally stand out (pictured).

5/5 Livingetc Design Reports: Tent 2011

londons designed ary tray

(Image credit: Åry)

Big kids got their kicks from stands like Poplojik's plastic DIY dressing-up headgear, while i3Lab's soft, round floor mattress, Full Moon Odyssey made grown men curl up in joy.

Donya Coward's mix of textile and taxidermy was a humorous take on a trend that has intermittently become downright spooky, and the Whisk-y lights from Cypriotic Seks managed to both raise a smile and cast beautiful shadows.

Anna Viktorsson's London 2012 tray for Åry also had an attractive childlike quality.

Find more design show information and design reports in our Home Fashion Week hub.


Tamara was Ideal Home's Digital Editor before joining the Woman & Home team in 2022. She has spent the last 15 years working with the style teams at Country Homes & Interiors and Ideal Home, both now at Future PLC. It’s with these award wining interiors teams that she's honed her skills and passion for shopping, styling and writing. Tamara is always ahead of the curve when it comes to interiors trends – and is great at seeking out designer dupes on the high street.