Liverpool Design Festival: An Event for Creatives in the North West

Today we wanted to share with you all a big event coming to the North West that has been around for a few years now, building upon its great work each time. Not only is it great to share such a positive event going on in my local area, but i’m happy to say that Design Juices will be going down to check out The Liverpool Design Festival on Friday and hoping to interview, feature, network and connect with both exhibitors and other friends from the Liverpool creative community.

The Liverpool Design fest (also found on twitter @DesignFest) kindly sent us some more detailed information to let us know just what the event is all about.

Liverpool Design Festival 2011

Friday 7th – Sunday 9th October Design Show

Last year was a great success for the festival and that has meant that his years show is now 3 days, situated in St Georges Hall. With around 80 independent designers of all works of life. Ticket are still available via with over 5000 visitors expected.

Here at Design Juices we are very excited to check out the work of Designed Made aka Jonathan Krawczuk, who we were lucky enough to interview earlier this year. We are also excited to browse the work of Ilsa Parry & so many more!

The Key Exhibitors this year are highlighted below with a brief introduction into their works.

Tatty Devine –Handmade in England, Tatty Devine is famous for its inventive and creative jewellery. They have been commissioned to create catwalk pieces as well as high street collections and enjoy cult status in Japan, America and Australia as well as Europe. Listed by Dazed and Confused as one of the top 50 coolest brands worldwide this is their first visit to Liverpool. Design Show visitors can have fun creating their own accessories in Tatty Devine’s weekend workshops.

Curiousa and Curiousa – Esther Patterson produces elegant lamps and lighting from hand blown glass and bone china. Drawing on her background in graphic design Esther also creates surface patterns for fabric and these were recently featured on BBC2’s ‘Britain’s Next Big Thing’.

Kirsty Hull – one of the big successes at last year’s Design Show, Kirsty is an up and coming Cheshire based furniture designer and upholsterer who breathes new life into traditional designs with her unique hand embroidered fabrics. Whether rescuing old furniture or working with new solid mahogany frames all Kirsty’s pieces are handmade using traditional methods.

Thorsten Van Elten – Theo is the new eclectic and inspirational online shop brought to you by Thorsten van Elten who has been producing icon design-led objects such as the Pigeon Light, Antlers and Plant Cup since 2002.Theo launched in July 2010 and sells mainly British and Central European products which have a long lasting quality and aesthetic. Their motto is: Buy less…but buy better!

Lazerian – Manchester based artist Liam Hopkins creates breathtaking furniture, lamps and flat pack dogs, precision cut from cardboard and plywood with a wood router! These beautiful sculptural pieces draw crowds to wonder at how they defy the limitations of such prosaic materials.

There will also be the premiere of the A/W 2011 collection from Claudette Joseph on the catwalk. Claudette can count Helen Mirren and Julie Christie as customers, and her latest collection combines influences and inspirations from the 1940’s featuring strong lines with a colour palette of white, chartreuse, navy and soft rose.

“We want to inspire and excite designers and public alike by providing a platform and a focus on the very best in contemporary design.” – Tara Badami (Director)

“During the four day festival there will be a Design Trail for the intrepid and not-so-intrepid design consumer to follow across the city, offering opportunities to view exhibitions and installations of high quality work from textiles in the suburbs of Crosby and Kirkby, to photography, furniture and fashion in city centre stores. Partnering again with other Liverpool venues committed to contemporary design, the Design Trail will also highlight exhibits at the Bluecoat, the Tate and FACT.

During the Design Show there will be an exhibition of work by winners and runners up in Design Stars – a competition for school pupils which aims to encourage the designers of the future by participating in workshops with professionals. Last year’s categories were product, surface pattern and video game design.

The Design Festival and show are run by Design Initiative which is an industry body and charity based in Liverpool and Manchester. It works to support independent designers, helping them to promote their work and provide professional development through talks, seminars and conferences. The Design Festival and Show are made possible with the financial support of the City of Liverpool and Arts Council England.”

As well as the festival there is also a ‘Come in we’re open’ initiative run through several of the top Liverpool design studios;

Friday 7th October  ‘Come In We’re Open!’ –  Open Design Studios

Liverpool design agencies will be throwing open their doors for one day only to invite you in for a sneak peak at their creative space. The participating agencies work across a range of disciplines: graphics, web, digital content, games and interactive, branding, strategic communications, search engine optimization, PR even magazine publishing!

Between them they have created work to transform town centres (e.g Burscough Bridge – Smiling Wolf), give bands a leg up the music charts (e.g Wombats, Arctic Monkeys – Mercy) attract huge numbers of visitors to museums, theatres and cities in general, generate new content and brand experiences for national institutions (eg BBC- Splinter, Carlsberg – Uniform) and provide strategic communications at an international level (eg Unilever- Uniform).

So if you are a potential client wanting to check out the best local design talent, or a graduate wanting to see how it all works behind the scenes, or even just a curious design aficionado, check out the work places of the great and the good of Liverpool’s design scene and drop in for a chat.

Check for the latest studio updates and the full details on what each studio is offering;

Black & Ginger

Bolland & Lowe

Error Creative Studio



Ph Creative

Smiling Wolf

Splinter Design


USP Creative

If any of our readers or friends are making their way to the festival also, be sure to let us know! You can even let us know via twitter @designjuices.