In line with its firmly entrenched reputation as KwaZulu-Natal’s premier décor, design and lifestyle show, Decorex Durban promises a thrilling line-up of design brilliance, including both established names and exciting emerging talents to watch.
Amongst those exhibitors who’ve firmly earned their designer stripes is Westville-based Creative Concept Specialist, Bianca Howard, whose Slinx creative consultancy has been awarded the coveted Decorex Designer Spotlight, in association with Home Fabrics, showcase at Decorex Durban, which takes place from 18 to 21 March at the Durban Exhibition Centre. “How people feel in a space is as important as the way it looks,” Howard, who will collaborate with leading local textile house Home Fabrics on her stand, maintains. “A successful design is all about this crucial balance.”
“How people feel in a space is as important as the way it looks,” Howard, who will collaborate with leading local textile house Home Fabrics on her stand, maintains. “A successful design is all about this crucial balance.”
While Howard’s design style is defined by its unique ability to be both classically timeless and inherently contemporary, Taryn Flanagan of TDS Agency, a Summerveld designer who will debut at this year’s Durban show, is all about “keeping it simple and real”.
“I love creating spaces that are livable and lasting, and not always about following a trend,” says Flanagan, who began her creative career in the fashion industry before making the switch to interior design two-and-a-half years ago. “My stand for Decorex Durban this year will take its inspiration from my current design muse, India Hicks, and her island-living decorating style. From the inside of a conch shell and the husk of a coconut to the colour of the seawater over a shallow reef, my palette will be derived exclusively from all that encompasses the coastal lifestyle.”
Riyaad Tayob, meanwhile, is one of the designers appointed a stand on the all-new Top Man by Real Natural Stone showcase in which four local designers have each been tasked with interpreting the character of a prominent male celebrity in the ultimate “men-only” room setting. Tayob, who has been paired with radio personality Varshan Sookhun, is hoping visitors to Decorex Durban “will experience the glamour and appeal of the upmarket celebrity lifestyle while realising that it is wholly within their own reach.” His Overport firm, Design Time Art and Décor, strives to produce creative yet livable spaces for clients while “striking that delicate balance between quality and value”.
A celebration of natural wood and all its diverse applications will be at the heart of Linda Thusi’s Decorex showcase. The Springfield Park artist cum designer’s practice, LTJ Africa Projects, was founded two years ago with the intention of marrying Thusi’s two passions, art and decorating. “I want to show visitors to my stand that art doesn’t just belong on walls, furniture and the interior space itself can be art forms. And function should never outweigh aesthetics. I believe that as a nation, and as a continent, we have a wealth of design resources at our disposal and I am always looking for new ways to incorporate crafts such as carpentry, beading and textiles into my designs.”
Designer Luhandra Vorstman of Elle Kay Fabrics and illustrator Jen McKenzie of Abide Creative, a pair of Durban outfits, will team up for their 2016 Decorex stand. “Both of our design philosophies are quite simple,” says Vorstman. “We strive to create on-trend products with high-end appeal and a great price tag.
“If we had to give our stand a theme it would probably be ‘pattern overload’,” she continues. “We are going for bright, fresh colours used in a relaxed yet sophisticated living-room setup. The new Abide Botanicals wallpaper will form the backdrop of the stand, while Coral and Spearmint fabrics from Elle Kay will be showcased in fresh new ways. We are hoping visitors will appreciate our use of pattern and get a broader understanding of how our products can be used separately and in conjunction with one another.”
Also from Durban, Mi Africa Decor Experience recognises the need for a contemporary approach to African décor, embracing the vibrant side of Africa as opposed to traditional earth tones and safari themes. “Our motto, ‘Own It, Love It, Live It’, plays perfectly into Decorex’s 2016 theme, ‘Take it Home | Make it Home’,” says designer Bulelwa Mvulana. “Our stand will showcase the current trend of using beautifully bright African prints in furnishings and accessories. We will also be launching our pallet range of furniture as a complement to our African Print range and hope to inspire visitors with our colourful display of contemporary items influenced by the rich heritage our continent has to offer.”
Another passionate colour advocate is Stacey Vermeulen of Design Ahead, an Umhlanga-based firm that has been decorating interiors for over 10 years. “This year we have taken a pair of stands at
Decorex Durban,” says the designer. “For the Get It Magazine stand, we have worked with just two Pantone Colours of the Year, Rose Quartz and Serenity, while our Design Ahead stand will go allout
bold with deep shades of pink and some contrasting turquoise. A feature of this stand will be a striking dining table custom made from the roots of a tree.”
“KwaZulu-Natal has a remarkable pool of design talent and we are privileged to showcase some of the province’s leading lights at Decorex Durban 2016,’ says Sian Gutstadt, Portfolio Director of Decorex SA. “In keeping with its brand-new theme, ‘Take it Home | Make it Home’, Decorex Durban promises to bring design hungry visitors more inspired ideas than ever before.”
Decorex Durban details:
Decorex Durban: 18 – 21 March 2016
Time: 18 – 20 March, 10am to 8pm; 21 March, 10am to 6pm
Trade days: 18 March
Ticket prices: R75 for adults; R65 for trade, pensioners and scholars; R20 for children under 12
Venue: Durban Exhibition Centre
Decorex Durban forms part of the Decorex SA portfolio and is owned by Reed Exhibitions.