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    Interiors gift ideas for Christmas 2020: Lighting

    How about ditching the usual slippers and gloves this Christmas, and gift something for the home that’s quirky and been made with love?

    The great thing about interiors pieces is that you can always find something unique that fits in with any budget.  There’s a special gift out there for everyone: vintage; handmade; minimal; high-tech; the choice is endless.  And with a run-up to Christmas like no other this year, we wanted to show support for small, British design companies.  It has been no easy feat the last six months, attempting to navigate moving deadlines and broken supply chains, and there are amazing people right here, just around the corner making beautiful (and practical) things that need a home.  As we are all spending so much more time at home at the moment, an interior design-based gift will be all the more appreciated.

    Soooo…. for the next five weeks, Element Studios will blog about gift ideas, a different category each week, and suggest places to look and designers to consider.  This week, we are thinking about lighting.

    Lighting is a great place to start.  There are a huge range of options for every age group and budget – from rechargeable garden lamps that change colour, to muted night lights that play lullabies.  A light fitting doesn’t just help you see, it can also be a beautiful design piece regardless of whether it is switched on or off.  There are amazing artisan lamp-makers working all over the UK with a huge range of products perfect for a thoughtful, enduring interiors gift. Whether you want to surprise someone with a simple new lampshade to go on that dusty old table lamp in the corner or find a state-of-the-art pendant for a design lover and their new dining room table.

    Images: Curiousa & Curiousa

    Hand blown glass lighting

    One of our favourite design studios is Curiousa & Curiousa based in Derbyshire, who we first saw at Clerkenwell Design Week 2018, and wrote about here.  We have used their lovely hand-blown pendants in several of our interior’s projects.  They have over twenty different colours of glass to choose from in all kinds of combinations of shapes & sizes, along with fittings to go in bathrooms and wonderful silk shades that can hang in the garden.  Why not chose something dark and cosy for winter or even a red/green combination to give a subtle Christmas theme. A handmade, bespoke fitting is timeless and well outlasts any seasonal trends that will probably look out of date before Christmas 2021.

    Handmade silk pendants from Curiousa & Curiousa

    Timeless lighting

    Locally to us in Oxford is the Original BTC lighting company, producing delicate, simple and beautiful light fittings.  Lovely bone china shades made in their factory in Stoke-on-Trent (the heart of the British ceramics industry) with their signature cotton braid flex (originally snipped off a household iron!) are still one of the company’s most popular designs.  The Hector Bibendum with it’s iconic Michelin Man curves was designed by Terence Conran who supported Original BTC from it’s earliest days

    These iconic designs will fit alongside most existing interior decor.  Why not look at getting a beautiful desk light as a gift for someone who now has to work from home, or a new reading lamp for a grandparent, to go with their favourite chair?  BTC have lots of choice – copper, bone china or aluminium.

    Industrial lighting

    Too delicate?  For something more industrial, how about an Old School Electric pendant made from British spun steel.  Reproducing the original 1939 Coolicon design classic with a coloured exterior and white inner, Old School Electric have stuck to the original design’s vitreous enamel coating that ensures the pendant’s durability. These wonderful lights were used in offices, war rooms & canteens all over the UK up until the 1960s.  They come in many different colours along with a fantastic limited edition of Harry Beck’s 1933 version London Underground map.

    Image: Old School Electric

    It’s Christmas: think cosy pools of light in which to make Christmas cheer, or soft downlights to enable you to curl up with a good book.  Lighting is the perfect gift for these darker winter months.

    Fin collection made from bone china in Stoke-on-Trent, by Original BTC
    24th May 2020

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    Interiors gift ideas for Christmas 2020: China and Ceramics

    Last week Element Studios considered lighting gift ideas for Christmas.  Lighting can create atmosphere,...