London Design Festival

Posted on Oct 7, 2013









I’m nothing if not punctual, so having previously written about an exhibition that had just finished, I’m now going to tell you about London Design Festival which finished on 22 September!

We went on a family excursion to the Endless Stair outside the Tate Modern on a Saturday morning. E (aged 1) is pretty keen on climbing stairs so, Bingo! What a great idea! Except it was a bit wet so the steps were a bit muddy, and his preferred climbing technique involves inadvertent cleaning of each step with his trousers and hands. When we finally reached the top there was a small queue (10.30am on Saturday not peak visiting hours) but E’s passion for stair climbing would not be halted by the niceties of queuing decorum and our attempts to distract him were unsuccessful, so he had to be carried down mid-tantrum rather than squashed underfoot. J took our other son to the top and apparently there’s a great view. I wouldn’t know.

The structure itself was beautiful – an essay in elegant timber construction, wood grain and rhythms. So much more than a souped up climbing frame.

Talking of timber things in the air, Treehub was a ‘treehouse’ (nowhere near a tree) at a market I was part of in Peckham. It put you up at the level of the trains. Slightly perilous but fun. I was so exhilarated by the climb I failed to take any photos.

The Peckham Designers’ Market was also part of the London Design Festival in September. Lot 9 is around the corner from my house; they held events (and hosted a ‘temporary timber sanctuary’) every weekend in an ex-car lot opposite Peckham Rye station and we were the final Saturday event. I was selling cards and displaying my drawings of houses. Lots of people popped by, the rain held off, I learnt lots about doing this kind of thing, and how exhausting it is standing up for 8 hours. I thought heaving kids around was tiring, but it turns out standing still for a while beats that. Who knew crafting would take such a physical toll?

FYI: you can buy my cards. Off-the-shelf cards will be online soon, but in the meantime I will happily send you a personalised baby card like this in exchange for only £7! Email me

My sister was as the market too, which meant I had someone to bring me tea. Maddy is MOXHAM. Yes, she stole our name as her jewellery and accessories brand, but she makes brilliant necklaces with bells on (next to you over 8 hours? Noisy), and she’s really rather successful. She got us matching magnetic boards which either looked cool and low tech, or made no sense because someone had bumped in to them and thrown the letters off course. For reference, these things make excellent distractions for 1 year olds who aren’t terribly interested in perusing a designers market, as long as you don’t focus too much on the story your mother-in-law once told you about a baby swallowing magnets and them all sticking together in his stomach and really bad things happening.

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