Design Junction highlights at London Design Festival

The return of this ambitious shoppable showcase ensures the festival’s newly formed King’s Cross Design District is off to a flying start

King’s Cross’s LED Light Tunnel
King’s Cross’s LED Light Tunnel will house the Rado Star Prize exhibition

This well-established show heads back to a rather different King’s Cross after last year’s hiatus on the South Bank, with Design Junction’s blend of big names, emerging talent and shopping opportunities showcasing the design credentials of this redeveloped creative quarter. Under the theme of ‘(Re)act’, over 200 exhibitors – including a roll call of British talent, such as Steuart Padwick, Very Good & Proper, as well as newcomer Brook Studio– provide plenty to inspire in NC1. 19–22 September.

With action spread across a cluster of key venues, here’s where to head...

Verpan lighting

CUBITT HOUSE You’ll find cutting-edge furniture and lighting from more than 100 brands at this essential exhibiting space, which acts as the district’s main hub. There’s a distinct Scandinavian flavour this year, with new pieces from Friends & Founders, Engelbrechts and festival novice Verpan (above), who is launching three new pieces from an archive of designs left by founder Verner Panton.

earthenware, Ceramic, Porcelain, Pottery, Drinkware, Tableware, Cup, Flowerpot, Tree, Cup,
Abalon Photography Justin Webb

CANOPY MARKET There’s lots to look at across the festival, but Canopy Market is one of the only opportunities to take something home. In competition for most covetable are Tom Pigeon’s prints from its exclusive ‘Mix Match Shop’, Sevin London’s handmade soap, and refillable soy wax candles in painterly porcelain pots from Abalon (above).

Coal Drops Yard by Thomas Heatherwick
Coal Drops Yard

COAL DROPS YARD This year’s event is set against the architectural backdrop of Coal Drops Yard – completed by Heatherwick Studio at the end of last year – and its many design stores. Don’t miss the free festivities happening at Tom Dixon as the brand launches a multi-sensory series of installations, product previews and an event entitled ‘TouchySmellyFeelyNoisyTasty’. It rounds out a great festival for the designer, who will also be awarded the London Design Medal.

DON’T MISS The Rado Star Prize in the much-loved LED Light Tunnel – which links St Pancras and King’s Cross stations with Granary Square. It’s the suitably theatrical setting for the third Rado Star Prize exhibition and award ceremony, which recognises young British design talent. The theme ‘Re-Imagine’, explores different ways design can improve life, by evolving existing product forms through materials, function, technology, end-use or even, re-use. Call in on King’s Boulevard for installations and brand activations, then wander over to boutique cinema Everyman King’s Cross for a full programme of talks curated by design editor Grant Gibson, visit here to book.

This year, ELLE Decoration is hosting the designjunction Café in Canopy Market. Conceived by south London-based interior design studio Matteo Bianchi, it’s the most stylish space to pause for refreshment at the show.

Visit on Saturday 21 September or Sunday 22 September and collect your voucher from the Café to redeem offers from selected brands. Look out for the tags on participating stands. T&Cs apply.

ELLE Decoration readers can buy designjunction tickets at a discounted rate of 50% off. Simply enter DJ1100 into the discount code box in the registration form here.

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