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Uncovering History

We thought we’d share this piece of history uncovered during the refurbishment of our showroom at 554 Kings Road – a newspaper from 1897, parts completely preserved and stowed away behind a wall.

Newspaper

The Situations Vacant page has an interesting entry showing the rates of pay for various household staff – from £20-28 for cooks to a mere £10 a year for ‘girls’.

Newspaper (close up)

It’s been fascinating watching layers of history appear as the building has been gutted. Pictured below are scraps of wallpaper and paint revealed on the first floor.

Wallpaper

And most exciting of all the original sign for ‘Loud & Western Ltd’ laundry was preserved almost perfectly beneath the existing shop front.

Refurbishment


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Staff Profile: Sonia McEwen

The final member of staff to be profiled is Marketing & Social Media Manager Sonia McEwen who joined Deirdre Dyson last December.

Sonia McEwen

No two days are the same but a large part of Sonia’s time is spent managing Deirdre Dyson LLPs social media, including this Blog.

1) Looking back over the past year, what would you say was your most memorable moment working at Deirdre Dyson?

Having seen the design process from start to finish for the first time; the arrival of the 2015 Collection of rugs from Nepal.

2) From the choice of Deirdre Dyson designs, is there a particular favourite that you have and if so, why?

DAWN from the 2015 collection – at first glance it appears to be a really simple design but it’s so cleverly graded and the colours used blend so well that it creates an optical illusion.

DAWN
Deirdre Dyson Exclusive Carpets and Rugs DAWN

3) As a member of the CDQ, (Chelsea Design Quarter) is there a particular company or showroom within the vicinity that you like or would recommend to others?

VILLAVERDE for their elaborate lighting, it’s always worth a glance in the window.

Murano

4) Seeing that Christmas is fast approaching, what would be on your ‘Christmas wish list’ as the ultimate present?

I can’t think of anything for myself but if you asked my children it would be Lego, they can’t get enough of the stuff!

5) And what are you looking forward to in the New Year?

Moving back to our newly refurbished showroom, it’s been really exciting watching it’s transformation over the past few months!


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Staff Profile: Nichola Webb

Nichola Webb is the longest serving staff member and has worked with Deirdre since 2002.  Nichola is a CAD Designer and converts Deirdre’s hand drawn and coloured designs to digital artwork which is then used as a template by our weavers.

Nichola Webb

1) Looking back over the past year, what would you say was your most memorable moment working at Deirdre Dyson?

I really enjoyed the CDQ summer street party in June.  It was a fantastic evening, a nice celebration and introduction to our temporary showroom as we had just moved in.  I also enjoyed visiting Designjunction, it was so contemporary and inspirational. A nice balance between creative and commercial.

2) From the choice of Deirdre Dyson designs, is there a particular favourite that you have and if so, why?

I think all the ‘Butterfly Collection’ is fabulous but my favourite is FARFALLA. It is such a beautiful design, well balanced with a combination of natural colours and  lovely silk red spots. It makes you smile and could be used in various locations.

FARFALLA

3) As a member of the CDQ, (Chelsea Design Quarter) is there a particular company or showroom within the vicinity that you like and would recommend to others?

GO MODERN specialises in contemporary design-led furniture. They have really lovely, unique furniture for the whole home.

Go Modern

My favourite lunch spot is Jaks, hidden away in a basement on the Kings Road with amazing Mediterranean food, authentic décor and a great relaxing atmosphere.

4) Seeing that Christmas is fast approaching what would be on your ‘Christmas wish list’ as the ultimate present?

As I have all my family in New Zealand, spending time with my nephew, niece and family is my ultimate present.  Nothing comes close to this.  I’m so excited as it is so close now.

5) And what are you looking forward to in the New Year?

We are all very excited about moving back to 554 Kings Road, into our newly refurbished showroom next year. The showroom is going to be spectacular and a beautiful space to work in. Definitely a highlight of the year.


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The Intricacies of Grading

Over the past few years Deirdre has increasingly incorporated grading – where different coloured silk or wool is woven together to create graduated layers of colour – into her designs to achieve a heightened sense of depth and complexity.

Last year’s SEA WASH showcased Deirdre’s skill for selecting colours that seamlessly segue to create a unique, almost water colour, effect.

SEAWASH indigo
Deirdre Dyson Exclusive Carpets and Rugs SEAWASH INDIGO

The grading applied to this year’s DAWN brilliantly gives, what appears to be a very simple design, incredible layers of visual depth and contrast.

DAWN
Deirdre Dyson Exclusive Carpets and Rugs DAWN

The success of the finished carpet is a true combination of Deirdre’s singular eye for colour and the craftsmanship of our weavers in Nepal, Deirdre says of the weavers:

My 2015 “Illusion” collection presented my hand-knotted makers with the most difficult challenge to date.  The geometric designs may look deceptively simple, but the intricacy of workmanship involved is astounding. I have used colour grading in many directions and opposing paths. The makers, who work across the loom from left to right, row by row, have to change colour at almost every stitch. It requires them to think as if standing on their heads and reflects the complete labour of love that we dedicate to these exquisite carpets! The result is a dazzling contrast from light to dark, of shadows and optical illusions.

Here are some recent images of our weavers at work on a large-scale version of SEAWASH.

This version incorporates no less than seven different coloured silk threads and requires incredible skill on the weavers part to achieve the finished effect.

Intricacies of Grading

Intricacies of Grading

Intricacies of Grading

Discover how Deirdre has utilised this unique effect in the new collection.


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GEO SPRING in a Surrey Music Room

The bold graphic nature of this largescale hand knotted version of GEO SPRING works so well in a classic contemporary scheme, uniting the grand piano, armchairs and classical chimneypiece.

Geo Spring

Geo Spring

Geo Spring


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The newly refurbished 554 Kings Road is revealed!

554 Kings Road

On Wednesday 9th September Deirdre and Architect Timothy Hatton welcomed invited guests to celebrate the re-opening of our spectacularly transformed carpet gallery at 554 Kings Road.

554 Kings Road

554 Kings Road

The complete remodelling, masterminded by Tim, and undertaken by building contractors 800 Group, includes the addition of a dramatic glass box extension on the ground floor, a roof terrace accessed by a retractable glass roof and galleried first and second floors inspired by Kew Gardens Sackler Crossing.

554 Kings Road

554 Kings Road

Sally Storey of Lighting Design International created a bespoke lighting system to showcase Deirdre’s carpet designs to stunning effect.

The piece de resistance however has to be the patinated steel staircase designed by Tim Hatton and created by New York based metal worker William R. Nitzberg of Enzo Metal – the staircase was entirely hand finished by William and floods the stairwell with light.

554 Kings Road

554 Kings Road

On the first floor Colin Peacock‘s wonderful film captures the journey of Deirdre’s designs from their inspiration and Deirdre’s initial sketches and drawings,  through to the ancient artisan dying and weaving processes involved in their  manufacture in Nepal.

The film is interspersed with a visual feast, and possibly the last known footage, of Nepalese landmarks destroyed during the devistating earthquake which took place just as filming ended.

554 Kings Road

554 Kings Road

The entire space creates a light-filled, calm environment in which to browse Deirdre’s designs and delight in her inspired use of colour and texture.

More photographs from the opening event and gallery images can be viewed on our Facebook page.


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CDQ INSPIRATION PAGE

CDQ Inspiration page

We love the newly designed Chelsea Design Quarter website and particularly like the ‘Inspiration’ page – an ever changing moodboard featuring fabulous product and lifestyle shots from all CDQ partner collections.


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A Date for your Diary!

Now an established highlight of the season, the annual Chelsea Design Quarter‘s (CDQ) Summer Street Party takes place on Wednesday 7th June between 6-9pm.

This year’s theme is ‘Circus’ with the hub of the party running from the ‘bridge to the bend’ stretch of the Kings Road and late opening of all participating showrooms.

Browse the wide variety of interiors businesses the quarter has to offer whilst you enjoy drinks, nibbles and circus-inspired street entertainment.

CDQ has over 50 member showrooms covering carpets and lighting, fabrics and furniture, kitchens and bathrooms, antiques and collectibles, prints and paintings and bespoke galore. Classic and traditional sit cheek by jowl with contemporary and modern – the Summer Street Party is the ideal time to explore our very special part of South West London!

Follow @ChelseaQuarter for more information.

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Sale Inspiration

In his occasional interiors series Edison creates mood boards based on two carpets reduced in our Summer Sale.

Now that we’re into our sale period I’ve just taken a look at two of the latest designs that have been added to our ex display sale list. I wonder who will buy these gorgeous pieces of art for the floor?

Being bang on trend and both having a timeless appeal, here are two mood boards which take inspiration from the DAWN and FOREST MOSAIC designs.

Mood boards are great tools to help co-ordinate a look, piece together elements of a design or simply help you focus on a colour, theme or mood.

DAWN MOOD BOARD
“FROM CHARTREUSE TO MUSTARD, BOTH COLOURS WORK WELL AGAINST SHADES OF GREY”

L-R: DAWN hand knotted wool and silk carpet, ‘Ocean Mist’ ombre wallpaper by muralwallpaper.co.uk, chartreuse decor living room, Vintage Italian fauteuil, Ligne Roset vase from Heals and set four Orrefor glass vases.

FOREST MOSAIC BOARD
“WITH ELEMENTS OF ART DECO, THINK STRUCTURED GREEN FORMS WITH A TOUCH OF LUXURY”.

L-R: FOREST MOSAIC hand knotted wool and silk carpet, original Art Deco interior and furnishings, 1930s palm floor lamp, Ercol chairs, House of Hackney x Jeremy Scott for Puma trainers and original Lalique vase from amara.com £11,900.

 

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