The judging panel for the Best Stand Awards all agreed that Decorex Cape Town 2012 was a stand-out show, marked by a wide range of imaginative concepts and desirable products. “I was particularly impressed with the mix of the functional and the aesthetically-pleasing,” says Kim Gray, editor of the eponymous blog. Fellow judges – décor editors Mandy Allen and Vicki Sleet – commented on the clever layout that makes the show so easy to navigate.
The judges awarded Victorian Bathrooms as the best overall stand for the way the stand design took every aspect into consideration from the overall concept to the most basic design – even the shower was running. “Victorian Bathrooms took sanitary ware from a staple home product to the most desirable have-to-have,” commented Allen.
The trend and fabric-focused installation Contemporary Country, curated for Decorex SA by Laurence Brick Creative Direction, was such a strong contender in the ‘best on show stakes’ that the judges awarded the excellence of the stand with a special mention. “It should be shouted from the rooftops just how well-curated, inviting, cutting edge and chic this modern installation is. It is a world-class interpretation of mega-trends that will sit comfortably in any of Europe’s top design shows,” the panel said.
It was the attention to detail at interior designer Adriaan Lochner’s stand that won him ‘Best Small Stand’ accolade. “To make such a big statement in a small space, is remarkable,” according to the judges. “Lochner’s small, but beautifully executed stand touched one with its stillness. Its carefully considered use of old family photographs from his own childhood stood as a reminder of what matters more than material things and objects … life and family. This he did without being sentimental.”
Making such an opening statement with her debut stand at the entrance to the exhibition hall, Marissa Pretorius of Opus Studio clinched the award as the best newcomer to the show. Showing how earth, moss and plants can bring a breath of fresh earth to hard-edged cityscapes, Pretorius – who opened her multi-faceted plant studio in Woodstock earlier this year – created a contemporary hanging garden to showcase ‘Kokedama’, a fascinating Japanese gardening form often referred to as ‘poor man’s bonsai.
The earth-caring ethos of the Bamboo Warehouse won them the coveted Decorex Cape Town Green Award, while the riotous use of energetic brights won Ambiente Luce the Plascon award for the best use of colour. Says Anne Roselt, Plascon colour manager: ”this lighting stand used the energising and engaging impact of colour to the hilt. The use of on-trend tangerine, hot pink and colour blocking in a very tiny space is bold, daring and highly effective.”
Voted the most innovative product on show, the SMEG wine fridge with built-in iPod docking station (used in the Man Cave designed for brothers Bob and Dan Skinstad) blends cutting-edge technology with lifestyle. “While not commercially available, the response to this concept-product hopefully will convince SMEG to produce it in the future as everyone would want one”, says Angela Chatfield, who heads up Decorex’s sales division.
The judges were also most impressed with the way Furnspace 3D which specialises in design software for trade professionals and consumers, connected with visitors. This won them the award as the most interactive stand on show. “Drawing people in and getting them involved with a product is an art all of its own,” commented Sleet.
Putting the collaborative spirit together four of the country’s top design personalities interpreted the Plascon 2012 Colour Forecast in highly individual roomsettings described by the judges as “a collection of highly inspirational colour pods”. This installation won three Excellence Awards: one for the curatorship of the total installation (accepted on behalf of Plascon by LBCD). Another went to Aidan Bennetts for his mysterious take on a study which took its design cue from a 1950s detective novels to portray the darker, moody and mysterious palette. Furniture designer James Mudge, collaborating with other talented designers including his sister Rose Mudge, portrayed the Origins palette to rave reviews – clinching the 3rd excellence award related to this trend-forward installation.
Also part of this multi-award winning Plascon installation, Porky Hefer used his giant reed nest to interpret the Memories colour palette, which proved to be a big hit with visitors of all ages as they clamoured in and out of the nest.
Summary: Results Decorex Cape Town 2012 Best Stand Awards
Best Stand on Show: Victorian Bathrooms
Best Small Stand: Adriaan Lochner Interiors
Best Green Stand: Bamboo Warehouse
Innovative Product: SMEG wine fridge with built-in iPod docking station
Best Newcomer: Opus Studio
Plascon Colour Award: Ambiente Luce
Most Interactive Stand: Furnspace 3D