This post is a little overdue but it’s time to give you a few highlights from the DecorCafe Festival which Pomegranate recently took part in at Strawberry Hill House in Twickenham.
A few weeks ago, in this blog post, I told you about this extraordinary house and the design festival organised by the wonderful DecorCafe Network. Well, the festival has come and gone – because time moves just that fast – and I really want to tell you how it went and to show you the Pomegranate display as well as those of some of the other exhibitors.
The event itself was beautifully organised by Debbie Blott and Emma Mitchell of the DecorCafe Network so I have to start by saying a huge thank you to these two lovely ladies. It’s quite a feat putting together an event like this and they did it quickly, efficiently and professionally. We were kept informed of progress, given regular updates and set-up details in good time and I never had to chase up anything – what a pleasure!
As a retailer, one of the things I really appreciated was the thought they put into deciding on the ‘adjacencies’ (sorry – retail term!) of the exhibitors. Having businesses that complement each other displayed alongside one another makes such a huge impact on the results and success of an event! And they got it spot on.
I’ve taken part in several pop-up and Christmas events since launching Pomegranate and have often found that the organisers put little (if any) thought into which types of businesses should be placed near each other. Example? At one event, Pomegranate was placed between someone selling popcorn and someone selling water coolers!
DecorCafe events are different though and an absolute pleasure to be a part of. As I’ve mentioned already, it’s a network of interiors professionals and enthusiasts, all of whom have a passion for creating a personal and unique home. These include interior designers, artists, stylists, makers, home accessories retailers, photographers, textile & wallpaper designers and restorers, as well as small home business owners and professionals (you can find out more of the DecorCafe Experts here).
This means that any events organised by the DecorCafe attracts an audience and a clientele who is naturally interested in the world of interiors, decoration and products – my world!
I have to add also that the event was very well marketed on our behalf, by both the DecorCafe and Strawberry Hill House, with regular mentions in local press and on various blogs.
Strawberry Hill House was a fantastic venue for an interiors event like this one. I mean, what an amazing backdrop for us all! A Grade I listed building of historical and design significance, the first Gothic house and interior in the UK, packed with character and atmosphere.
And the staff and volunteers working there couldn’t have been more helpful or accommodating. I was really impressed with their positive and happy attitude, their enthusiasm and sheer joy at working in this spectacular house. Plus they were so helpful!
The set up went pretty smoothly considering there were about 40 of us exhibiting! Even though the set up times were timed and staggered, that’s still a lot of people setting up stands and displays. And all in a delicate recently restored (can I say Grade I listed building again here?!) house in which we couldn’t touch the walls, drag things along the floors or drink/eat anything :).
But of course we happily did it! One minute the rooms were full of boxes, wrapping and bubble wrap, and the next minute, the displays were all complete and ready. Pop-up events like this are hard work and pretty tiring but they are such fun as well!
The festival started on Thursday 10th March with an evening twilight event which was really very cool. Although there is electricity in the house, there isn’t much lighting with the exception of a few up-lighters. This meant that most of the lighting came from our products, like table and floor lamps, creating a moody and atmospheric ambiance which was quite special.
On Friday 11th March, the event carried on all day until 4 pm and because Strawberry Hill House operates a timed entry system for the house, this meant a very nice and regular stream of visitors and customers throughout the day. It was a great success!
I didn’t get the chance to visit all my fellow exhibitors I’m sorry to say but I did manage to snap a few pictures of some of the displays, so I’ve compiled them for you here to give you a little taste of the festival.
I’ll start with the Pomegranate display and those of my neighbours in The Great Parlour. This was a lovely large room painted in a pale dusty blue with a nice wooden floor and featuring a dramatic and oversized Gothic fireplace – which just happened to be the backdrop for the Pomegranate stand. How about that eh?!?
You can find out more about any of the exhibitors featured here by clicking on their name.
The fireplace was just calling for a dramatic black and white photo!
I had fun with my display and tried to show an array of different products.
VICTORIA HILL BESPOKE SOFT FURNISHINGS
Victoria Hill creates and makes bespoke soft furnishings for your home, including curtains, blinds, bed coverings and cushions.
Absolute Abode is a gorgeous home accessories shop and cafe in Raynes Park near Wimbledon, where they also offer a design consultancy service.
GEORG JENSEN DAMASK
Fabulous table linen and other textiles for the home from the iconic Danish Georg Jensen brand.
Beautiful handmade cushions, throws and accessories by Inky Velvet.
These were my neighbours for the two days of the show and below are some of other designers and businesses who took part in the DecorCafe Festival.
THE VELVET DAISY
Helen Edwards is a super talented florist who can work with you on any project or event to create a bespoke floral display.
DESIGNED BY LIGHT
Designed by Light create bespoke light fittings for any project.
Arcadia can source and restore antiques and special pieces for you from around the world.
BOND & WEST
Bond & West can help you find unique antique pieces and collectibles for your home.
GEORGE & BETH
George & Beth Pedlers of vintage pieces and accessories.
Isobel Allan-Lowe is a ceramicist who designs and makes beautiful lamps, wall panels and accessories. She also works to commission.
LISA NORRIS GALLERY
Lisa Norris is an art expert with a very nice gallery on King's Road in London where she curates exhibitions of wonderful art.
LAURA FELICITY DESIGN
Laura Felicity designs and prints by hand a delicate and pretty collection of wallpapers, cushions, fabrics & accessories.
Lorna Syson is a textile designer who makes beautiful lampshades, cushions and accessories. Many of her designs are inspired by nature.
And these are my highlights from the DecorCafe Festival! It was a wonderful event which I thoroughly enjoyed and which was good for my business as well. Thank you to friends, family and customers who came to see us. Here’s to the next one!
If you would like to know more about the Decorcafe Network or the exhibitors, please visit the DecorCafe website.
…’till next time
Image Credits: All images by Nicole Antar except for Victoria Hill’s and Georg Jensen’s who are by the respective brands and used with permission.