Designers Fair, Cologne 2011

The first thing to say about Designers Fair 2011 is that it was smaller than last year.

The second point to say is that the location was a lot poorer than last.

The first point is in itself no bad thing – the second is.

Now you know us. For us one of the genuine joys of a design week is the chance it offers to explore a city and to visit those areas that one otherwise wouldn’t see.

And the 2011 Designers Fair location in Ehrenfeld was in that sense good as it provided a focal point for our visit to the various satellite shows in Ehrenfeld.

But we would have gone to them anyway.

We’re us.

However, for many visitors IMM is the principle attraction and raison d’etre for the journey to Cologne.

And for them Designers Fair – as the principle show for organised, professional young designers -needs to be accessible.

Otherwise they won’t go.

We know that there were problems finding a location – and that Designers Fair weren’t the only one ones with geographic challenges – but for 2011 Designers Fair needs a location that doesn’t involve such a complicated journey from the Messe.

Otherwise one loses opportunities – and in a worst case scenario exhibitors.

Which is a shame – and would be a real problem.

Christian Lessing @ Designers Fair 2011

Christian Lessing @ Designers Fair 2011

Especially when one sees the quality that is/was on display.

In addition to familiar faces such Christian Lessing, Tim Baute or maigrau, Designers Fair 2011 also introduced us to a couple of new design studios whom we plan to explore a litte more including Stadtnomaden, Yankei and Möbelchen. And then of course the chance to finally learn about SuperSputnk by Sisman.

If we’re honest there wasn’t much in the way of new products – but then Cologne isn’t there for new products. Cologne is there as German designers “home” furniture fair.

For us a little disappointing was “Wahlverwandtschaft” – the special section devoted to young Dutch designers. For us many of the designers selected were just a little to obvious and often failed to present a sustainable or coherent concept .

However on the whole Designers Fair 2011 was well worth the, long, trip.

As we say we just hope that next year they can find a more central and accessible location.

Designers Fair 2011

Designers Fair 2011 - not busy

maigrau @ Designers Fair 2011

maigrau @ Designers Fair 2011

Tim Baute @ Designers Fair 2011

Tim Baute @ Designers Fair 2011

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