May Design Series will open its doors on 18th May for three days, and will unite retailers, contractors, architects and interior designers alike. Back for its second year, May Design Series will this year be comprised of five design districts – The Furniture Show, DX, Lighting (including Arc), Decor and Kitchen + Bathroom. Close to 400 exhibitors will be joining the ever-strengthening line-up at May Design Series, many of whom plan to use the UK’s definitive furnishings fair as a platform to launch their latest collections.


Joining the line-up at May Design Series this year will be Casamania, an Italian based furniture design and manufacturing company. Casamania operates in high-end residential, hospitality, or commercial design projects, with collections covering a wide range of pieces from modular systems and furniture to lighting.

Highlights include the Toshi range of storing units. Meaning city in Japanese, Toshi is a system of mobile containers which calls to mind the mosaic decorations to be found in certain buildings in Tokyo. The fresh and essential lines optimise and emphasise the geometric design engraved on the doors of the pieces.

Also joining the show will be Armourcoat Surface Finishes – global manufacturers of decorative and innovative sculpted surfaces. The team at Armourcoat is using May Design Series to launch its Duncan MacKellar Signature collection – four new polished plaster finishes designed by Armourcoat’s founder.

Inspired by Italian heritage and Duncan’s artistic interpretation of natural forms and surface effects, these finishes are named Biellese, Calabresi, Nebrodi and Volsini. The artisan finishes create a rich, opulent feel, and are suited to luxury interior spaces.

Famed for its iconic stamp rugs, will be showcasing a variety of eye-catching designs at May Design Series. Highlights include a collaborative range with textile artist and designer Ptolemy Mann, which is compiled of flatweave and pile rugs inspired by mid-century design using a vibrant colour palette. Ideal for brightening up an everyday living space or to act as a statement piece in a commercial environment, the new designs come in a range of shapes and sizes and can be used as wall fittings or floorcoverings.

Flooring specialist Rainleaf is preparing for an exciting launch. On display for the very first time at  ExCeL will be a collection of Signature long planks – 8m long and 450mm wide – the longest ever seen at a design show in Europe. The planks will be introduced in two new colours, specifically for the show. This launch coincides with a recent project that Rainleaf has completed in Kensington, where the brand installed the longest engineered plank floor in the UK, which weighed in at 450mm wide, and 8.5m long.

The Furniture Show

A selection of furniture brands will be joining the line-up for the preview instalment of The Furniture Show at May Design Series this year, ahead of its first full-scale outing in 2015.

Joining the Fabric Pavilion within The Furniture Show is Swaffer Fabrics, which will be introducing the much anticipated new Austen collection of print, weave and chenille fabrics suitable for a wide range of residential and contract projects. Comprised of three prints – Pemberley,

Netherfield and Rosings, and a cast of coordinates named Bingley, Darcy and Lucas, the collection was inspired by Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.

The floral collection features a spectrum of colours from vivid violets to blush pinks, combining the epitome of traditional English design with striking modern colour. The versatile collection encompasses curtains, loose covers and bedspreads, and is also suitable for residential or contract upholstery projects. Austen prints are available in either 100% cotton or a 51% linen, 37% cotton 12% nylon blend, all at 137cm wide.

Iain James Furniture will be showing a variety of its classically-designed furniture this year, as well as unveiling a new addition. Iain James Furniture specialises in antique-style furniture, the designs of which span the last four centuries, from William and Mary to the Art Deco period.
For almost twenty years The Original Bedstead Company has been crafting quality metal beds for discerning customers across the globe. The brand will be exhibiting for the first time after taking a break from attending trade shows, and has a wide selection of new products to display, including metal beds, wooden beds and linens. One of the items on show will be the Turner bed – a twist on the New England classic featuring a high headboard and four-poster spire design. Turner, offered in a painted finish in one of over 200 colours, brings the design into contemporary living style.


Traditionally famed for its mirrors, Gallery Direct has recently expanded its range by 63% to include furniture and accessories. The brand is set to present British designed sofas and chairs, console tables and occasional furniture ranges at May Design Series this year. Highlights from the new collection include the Sienna three-seater sofa, a classically designed sofa upholstered in pale blue linen, and featuring turned oak feet.

Art Hide creates an ever-expanding range of ready-made items from high quality, sustainably produced Argentinean cow hide. As well as offering products from rugs to tablet cases, Art Hide also provides a bespoke design and manufacturing service to create a product that matches the specification of each individual customer. Art Hide materials work well as wall, floor or furniture coverings, and form a unique focal point in commercial spaces as well as in the home.

Lighting (including ARC)

Brand new to May Design Series, lighting giant Philips will be showing its LivingSculpture 3D module system, designed and developed by Christopher Bauder. The system allows designers to produce three-dimensional arrays of OLEDs for walls and ceilings, allowing other designers and artists to adapt it towards their own vision.

LivingSculpture is comprised of a series of tiles linked by rods of various sizes which are fixed to a back plate, creating the illusion of a rippling ceiling or wall of light. Each base plate, which measures 324mm by 324mm, can accommodate up to 16 OLEDs, although it is at the discretion of the customer as to whether they would like to use that many – and the rods can vary from flat to 400mm in length. The OLEDs can be ordered in various colours and temperatures for a personal finish.

Bespoke lighting designer Sharon Marston has announced the launch of six designs which are to be unveiled exclusively at May Design Series. The new designs will consist of opulent gold and black earthenware ceramics, whilst the stand itself will be adorned with stainless steel sculptures, bone china pendants and a back drop of intricate wall panels gilded in silver leaf.

Also joining the Lighting district line-up is Compact Lighting, manufacturers and distributors of luminaires and premium lighting solutions for the retail and hospitality environments. Compact will be demonstrating its LED design innovations, as well as presenting recent developments in HID technology. Compact will be displaying solutions that have been designed and launched within the last six months, and show how the latest core technologies can be utilised most effectively. What is more, a brand new luminaire will be exclusively unveiled.

Hailing from Budapest, lighting specialist Patinas Lampas will be returning after a successful show in 2013. The company specialises in handmade lighting, and has been producing bespoke pieces since 1986. Products on show will include chandeliers, wall lights, ceiling fittings and pendant and table lamps, designed to an international standard. Having previously worked with clients such as Hoopers and Starbucks, Patinas Lampas is able to product designs to fit any taste and budget.

Kitchen +  Bathroom

Bathroom designer Crosswater will be exhibiting its latest brassware collections at May Design Series. The products on show will include Belgravia – a traditional range with a modern edge – and high design collection Mike Pro, a sleek yet unassuming sophisticated design ideal for specifiers and interior designers alike.

In addition, the newly-launched, styish KH Zero brassware collections by renowned interior designer Kelly Hoppen MBE will be on display. These exciting new additions to Hoppen’s exclusive range offer a choice in design to those with a stylish flair, and make an ideal centrepiece in a boutique hotel or luxury home.

Leading British shower designer and manufacturer Roman will be displaying its latest collections at Kitchens + Bathrooms at May Design Series after a successful appearance at kbb Birmingham in March. Two new ranges will be on display at the event – Decem, and Lumin8.

Lumin8 is a range of luxury showers designed for the whole family, and designs feature power shower approved bath screens and doors that can open inwardly, outwardly or sideways. Decem, which is Latin for 10, brings together components of the highest quality, and features 10mm thick toughened glass, chromed brass hardware and minimalist framing for an aesthetically pleasing design. Hardware and handles are customisable allowing for the customer to create their ideal look, and the entire range comes with a lifetime guarantee.

JIS Europe will be displaying its extensive Sussex range of stainless steel heated towel rails, together with a collection of brand new rails that will be on show for the very first time. The towel rails are manufactured from 100% stainless steel, and are available in brushed satin or polished finish, making them both durable and hygienic. All rails also come with a 25 year guarantee. JIS points to the ecological advantages of stainless steel in that it is produced from a minimum of 90% recycled metal, manufactured environmentally and is itself 100% recyclable.

Founded in Florence, Zazzeri has come to be known as one of the best manufacturers of bathroom products in Italy. Seeking to combine design with tradition, Zazzeri will be exhibiting a wide range of products including its latest innovations, including POP! taps – with soft-touch vibrant spouts, teamed with a chrome, steel or lacquer-finished neck – and the Virgin shower, designed by Daniele Bedini, which seeks to capture the feeling of being amongst nature.

Salice will be exhibiting its range of furniture fittings for kitchens, bedrooms and bathrooms this year. Products on show will include the Slider S20 two-door coplanar sliding system, renowned for its reliablitiy, ergonomic advantages and aesthetically-pleasing design. Slider S20 is ideal for use in kitchen cabinets, sideboards and small wall cabinets up to 20kg in weight.

Salice will also be displaying Eclipse, a pocket door system featuring an assisted soft-close door return mechanism as well as a door opening safety device, and Lapis, a new hinge system offering soft closing action that is available in 12 finishes, and is suitable for use in any type of furniture.

New Design Britain

Previous New Design Britain alumni will show a review of their winning products plus a selection of their new designs at this year’s show in London.

Each year New Design Britain discovers, presents and celebrates young talent in the UK by awarding up and coming designers through a range of categories – all now with the added bonus of bring designers to the forefront of the international design industry, at its new home in London ExCeL.

Past New Design Britain award winners at the show will include James Harrison, Rob Scarlett, Daniel Schofield, Alex Macmaster, Limahl Asmall, Jason Heap, Jennifer Jones, and Henoc Maketo – a real opportunity for visitors to see the positive effects this awards accolade has had on these young designers’ lives and careers.

After winning the Furniture category in 2013 with his Shifty Desk, Daniel Schofield has since gone on to have his work featured in Heals as well as designing products for renowned creative-thinkers, Deadgood. Rob Scarlett is a familiar face among the New Design Britain team, even judging the awards in between setting up his own design studio, Scarlett Designs. Only this January, Charlotte Millett won the Furniture category section of the awards with her innovative Burst Chair.

It is clear to see from feedback that the awards offer the real promise of opportunity and development for both new designers finding their feet and visitors looking for designers of the future, all wrapped up in the excitement of finding the next big thing.

With the new edition of New Design Britain planned for May 2015, this year’s show will covet each New Design Britain alumni, all with their own success story to tell. New Design Britain is proud to have unearthed some of the best UK designers becoming a renowned trade secret – a must for those looking for emerging talent. New Design Britain alumni can be found on stand on Monday 19th May with their latest works.