Posts Tagged ‘lighting’

Gimme Five! Outdoor solar lights

Friday, July 11th, 2014

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selection of 5 outdoor solar lights

We’ve been enjoying sitting in deckchairs in our garden this summer. It gets direct sun until almost 7pm at this time of year. It’s been warm enough to sit out until way after the sun has gone down.

We want to get some pretty yet functional lighting to enhance our garden space and think that we’d be best served by some outdoor solar lights. No fiddly – and not to mention potentially dangerous, given our electrical knowledge  – cables and sockets to contend with. Solar lights are notorious for being a bit dim thanks to the often measly British sunshine. But we don’t mind that, we’re not after floodlights, just a nice, warm glow to give the garden added atmosphere. Here are some we’ve found…

  1. SOLVINDEN solar-powered table lamp: £9, IKEA
  2. Lola LED solar powered outdoor glass jar lantern in blue: £7, B&Q
  3. Solar outdoor string lanterns, multi: £20, John Lewis
  4. Solar post light: £16.99, Crocus
  5. Solar bamboo light: £6.99, Original Organics

Bookmarks: Illuminate – Contemporary Craft Lighting

Saturday, February 23rd, 2013

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cover of Hannah Nunn's Illuminate: Contemporary Craft Lighting book beside one of her Allium paper cut lamps

Today’s Bookmarks review, of Illuminate – Contemporary Craft Lighting, is the debut publication by someone we’ve blogged about in the past.

dandelion lamp handmade by Hannah Nunn

The book’s author, Hannah Nunn, is a designer/maker – specialising in beautiful & delicate paper-cut lamps.

cylindrical, handmade paper cut lamp by Hannah Nunn

She also owns and runs Radiance – a lighting & craft boutique – in Hebden Bridge where she’s based. All in all, a very busy lady!

glass feather chandelier

Illuminate’s chapters are broken down via materials – paper, glass, ceramics, wood etc…

large, rectangular ceiling light with multi-coloured glass drops in the shapes of leaves

…with sections within those chapters given over to individual designer/makers – a summary of their background & practice accompanied by lush photographs of their creations.

handmade floor lamps and floor-standing wooden cube lamps by Jane Blease

 Creations that are fun, colourful, wacky, delicate, whimsical and works of art – you’ll never make do with a bare bulb ever again!

sewing paper hanging wall lightshade above a vintage wooden chair

It’s lovely to see makers we know personally and admire including people like Manchester-based Jane Blease.

drum lampshades handmade by Helen Rawlinson from her silk-screened designs

And others who we’ve not had the pleasure of meeting in person, but with whose work we’re already familiar, such as Helen Rawlinson and Greypants.

trio of cardboard ceiling lampshades by Greypants

Equally, it’s great to be introduced by this book to talents such as Scabetti, Penelope Batley and Aline Johnson.

long pendant ceiling light with four different coloured glass shades

The lighting showcased represents an international pool of artistry. As well as the UK, makers hail from as far afield as Japan, the USA, New Zealand, Serbia and The Netherlands.

the beginning of the Paper chapter showing organic pottery vases with poppy heads inside next to a paper cut lamp by Hannah Nunn

In all, there are 43 individual lighting designers featured in the book – but owing to space restrictions Hannah has included an additional image gallery of work by other makers that she recommends you seek out.

selection of drum lampshades by House of Chintz on an antique Windsor chair

Perhaps this is a sign that there’s a demand for Illuminate II!

selection of lights

Illuminate is available from Bloomsbury the publishers, Amazon and Hive.

long neck light resembling a huge string of silver beads on a necklace hung over the back of a white chair

[Many thanks to Bloomsbury for the review copy]

Bookmarks: Miller’s Mid-Century Modern

Sunday, January 27th, 2013

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"Mid-Century Modern" by Judith Miller surrounded by vintage Mid-century modern homewares including a West German fat lava vase, bright orange pedestal cigarette lighter, small Cathrineholm enamelware Lotus bowl and still life oil painting

In today’s Bookmarks post we’re taking a peek at Mid-Century Modern – living with mid-century modern design by Judith Miller.

title page of "Mid-Century Modern" by Judith Miller with a small Cathrineholm enamelware Lotus bowl

Well, a bit more of a peek really , as we linger over some of the wonderful pieces on display!

interior view of the mid-century modern design Kauffman House sitting room

Mid-century modern is one of our favourite eras for interior design, illustration, textiles and product design…

Arne Jacobsen "Ant" and "Swan" chairs

…so as the pages turned, there was a soundtrack of many oohs and ahhs!

selection of vintage Mid-Century Modern glassware including a kingfisher blue "Drunken Bricklayer" vase designed for Whitefriars by Geoffrey Baxter

Judith Miller is most famous for her all-encompassing antiques & collectables guides which are published annually.

collection of colourful West German "Fat Lava" pottery pots and vases

In recent years, they’ve include an ever-increasing number of 20th century pieces in response to interest & demand.

collection of GPlan furniture including a nest of pebble tables and "Butterfly" chairs designed by Lucian Ercolani

This book concentrates solely on mid-century modern – 1950s to the 1970s being the period generally accepted.

collection of vintage mid-century modern glass vases

A wonderful introductory chapter covers its evolution and influential designers.

collection of vintage mid-century modern chairs including examples designed by Charles and Ray Eames and Carlo di Carli

The movement perfectly encapsulated a new mood of optimism after the war years with revolutionary designs, materials & techniques.

collection of vintage mid-century modern pop art chairs including examples designed by Egon Eiermann and Günter Beltzig

The fresh ideas, and indeed disposable income, of a whole new generation began to soar.

vintage mid-century modern chair designed by Eero Saarinen and folding cube radio designed by Richard Sapper

There are examples of houses & interiors that encapsulate the era – less cluttered and designed for modern living.

vintage mid-century modern George Nelson "Spike" wall clock, Tommi Parzinger-designed sideboard and mahogany credenza and aluminium armchair designed by Harvey Probber

A broad array of objects are included, with chapters given over to furniture, lighting, glass, ceramics, metalware & textiles.

collection of vintage mid-century modern glass vases produced by Riihimaki of Finland

In addition, an extensive section covers the people responsible for these wonderful & iconic designs.

collection of vintage mid-century modern fabric

There are about 200 familiar & not so familiar names who are given a short, individual write up.

Mid-Century Modern text

We’ll just scratch the surface by mentioning Arne Jacobsen, Verner Panton, Eero Saarinen, Alvar Aalto, Robert Welch, Stig Lindberg, Lucienne Day, Per Lutken, Charles & Ray Eames.

view of a sitting room with black Barcelona chairs and sofas

The book is packed with quality, full colour photographic references throughout…

vintage "Valentine" typewriter designed by Ettore Sottsass, Peter and Alison Smithson chair and Ronald Stennett-Wilson green glass candlestick

…and as with all Miller’s guides – estimated values to accompany each item image.

vintage mid-century modern Marcel Breuer reclining chair and Holmegaard "Gulvase" designed by Otto Brauer

There’s also a useful directory included of international dealers and their contact details – broken down into categories such as ceramics, glass, furniture, lighting etc.

collection of American-designed vintage mid-century modern furniture

As well as auctions & fairs and museums if you fancy going to see or sometimes handle wares in the flesh

vintage mid-century modern posters by Saul Bass and Herbert Bayer

The book is well researched and accessible – a perfect coffee table browser or excellent source book for your library.

collection of vintage Scandinavian mid-century modern ceramic pots, vases and plaques

Mid-Century Modern – living with mid-century modern design is available from the publishers Octopus, Amazon and Hive.

collection of vintage Scandinavian mid-century modern ceramics designed by Stig Lindberg

[Many thanks to Octopus for the review copy]

Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair ’11

Saturday, October 22nd, 2011

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Ken Eardley ceramic jugs and spoons on display

The Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2011 is being held this weekend in Manchester city centre – we went to the preview night on Thursday.

a selection of Ken Eardley ceramics on display shelves

It was great to see designer-makers whose work we’ve long admired – there was also the thrill of seeing fresh, new exhibitors.

a selection of Ken Eardley ceramics on display shelves with a recent article about him in BBC Homes & Antiques magazine open on a table

We featured Ken Eardley, whose ceramics are shown above in last year’s GNCCF blog post – once again, his stand had real impact. Things are going really well for him with magazine features such as this recent one in BBC Homes & Antiques.

a display of Jane Blease's handcrafted wooden artworks, lampshades and jewellery

Another striking space belonged to Jane Blease who works primarily with bentwood & reclaimed plastic often with her characteristic hand worked thread detailing. A recent artist residency in India has clearly inspired some of Jane’s new pieces. It’s interesting charting artists’ new developments & influences.

a display of Jane Blease's handcrafted wooden jewellery

The Radiance stand belonging to Hannah Nunn always delivers the goods – her hand cut paper light shades look great when displayed en masse…

a display of Hannah Nunn's Radiance mini lamps

…and we loved her new seed pod window hangings.

detail of the display of Hannah Nunn's Radiance newly designed seedpod window/wall hanging a display of Hannah Nunn's Radiance newly designed seedpod window/wall hanging

Ruth Green, who we’ve seen at GNCCF in previous years, also had some lovely new works…

display of Ruth Green's limited edition framed prints

…and she’s also branched out into illustrated books, notebooks & note cards.

display of Ruth Green's limited edition prints, posters and illustrated books & notebooks

With autumn setting in, Andrea Lord’s &made display offered some warm seasonal comforts…

display of &Made's cream coloured hand knitted mug cosy with grey felt cushion in the background

…such as these gorgeous cushions & cosies.

display of &Made's yellow ochre hand knitted tea cosies

As we mentioned earlier, it’s really exciting to discover new makers and their work…

Gemma Truman's seagrass & glass works inspired by weaverbirds' nests

…we’ll highlight just a couple who made an impact on us.

The first was Gemma Truman, whose hand-blown glass & seagrass hangings and vases are absolutely exquisite – they’re inspired by South African weaverbird nests. We also thought they were very reminiscent of those old fashioned glass fishing net floats.

detail from Gemma Truman's seagrass & glass works inspired by weaverbirds' nests

Second was Louise Hibbert.

display of Louise Hibbert's wooden salt & pepper mills

Her pieces have a natural feel and use subtle, earthy, yet striking colours.

display of Louise Hibbert's wooden salt & pepper mills

As you can see from her salt & pepper mills, they’re organic, tactile and oh so beautiful – they just cry out to be picked up, handled and caressed.

display of Louise Hibbert's coloured wooden salt & pepper mills

The show runs till this Sunday, so visit if you can! We’ve only featured homewares in this post, but there’s also lots of jewellery and fashion on display… and all of it’s for sale… so go on, get your Christmas shopping done early!

Strike a poise!

Friday, April 2nd, 2010

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multicoloured collection of vintage anglepoise lamps

This was an unusual buy at auction last week. A single lot, consisting of 21 vintage Anglepoise (and similar) lamps. We bought them untested – but amazingly all bar one worked perfectly!

white vintage Anglepoise lamp with Kathleen Major print in the background

We put some in our antiques centre pitch this morning….

vintage orange Finnish lamp

…the others will be finding their way into the H is for Home shop in the coming weeks.

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