It's that time of year again and our friends at Top Drawer held their Autumn/Winter 16 Trade show at London's iconic 130 year old Olympia Hall. Top Drawer is where our four favourite types of goods, namely Home, Gift, Fashion and Craft, meet under one giant glass vaulted roof and it gives us the change to see what's new and catch up with old friends.
The show is now in it's 32nd year and this edition was by far their biggest yet.
This year saw over 600 brands exhibiting and the introduction of Paperfest, a new area dedicated to design, paper and print.
One of the headline seasonal trends was crafted neutrals, which closely aligns with our own ethos. This trend involves exposing the textural details of natural materials and adding refined finishes, to create luxurious items that will stand the test of time.
As ever our favourite area is Spotted, the inspiring area where 40 of the best new breakthrough brands are handpicked to show off their talent.
MrD London in particular caught our eye, with their eye catching range of luxury gentleman's socks.
Another brand we discovered for the first time were Sinclair Duncan, who design traditional Scottish cashmere scarves and source their cashmere from Inner Mongolia. Joint owners, Sinclair and Debbie Paterson, outsource production to a range of small independent weavers to help support the local economy.
One business we think is worth supporting is Aura Que. Founded by designer Laura Queening, it crafts it's beautiful products through a series of collaborations with local producers/charities in Asia. Each supplier employs people affected by disability (in particular leprosy) or discrimination and allows them to earn a regular income to support their families.
Towards the end of the day we met up with the team from Tweedmill Textiles, makers of Darby's picnic blankets. They took us through their new range of products which including tweed coats for dogs, pure new wool warmer linings for wellington boots and lambswool baby blankets.
We are promised that the spring / summer 2017 show in January will be even bigger - we'll be there and report back to you on the themes and trends you can expect to see next year.