Surface Design Show 2018: My Top Picks

Last week I went to the Surface Design Show 2018 in London at the Business Design Centre. I like going to exhibits or trade shows to see what companies and manufacturers are creating in the interior and architecture worlds, to see what is in trend, to find out about new materials, inventions and technologies, colours, textures, and I also love to see how they display these wonderful surface designs and ideas!

IMG_E4326.jpgSurface Design Show inside the Business Design Centre, Islington, London
(My own image)

This was my second year going to the Surface Design Show, and I did find that it was a lot of the same companies that displayed last year, which is not a bad thing! It means it’s great for that business, that they are so popular that they can exhibit again and grow their customer base or catch up with any existing customers and clients in person.

There were also some that I didn’t recognise from last year, which was cool to see and refreshing. With all that in mind and without further delay, below are my favourite displays and exhibitors from Surface Design Week and why!



IMG_E4361Innerspace Stand
(My own image)

Innerspace is a family run and independent company from Cheshire that create interesting, innovative, textural and stunning hard surface materials to be used in interior spaces, be it offices, restaurants or hotels.

IMG_E4365Close up of wall panels
(My own image)

This display was by far my favourite, and I’m guessing you can already see why! I had a lovely chat with their managing director, Richard, who designed the display. We talked about the display and the work they do. The display was designed by Richard and inspired by the work of artist Charlie Edmiston, with it’s geometric shapes in the different finishes and materials the company makes, which makes it truly eye-catching from any level in the Business Design Centre and a perfect homage to Edmiston’s bright, juxtaposing paintings.

IMG_E4363IMG_E4364Tile sized samples of the different wall panels and wallpapers they produce
(My own images)

They had these little samples out of their panels that can be installed at any size the client desires, some with coloured wood, hay, moss and even dried flowers. I asked about the moss and flowers, and Richard explained to me about how they are preserved. They dry out the moss and flowers, but they preserve them with non toxic chemicals and keep them bright and colourful with food safe dyes (so essentially food colouring) which is just amazing! This way it is sustainable and eco friendly, and you know that you aren’t exposing yourself to harmful ingredients or toxins with these installed in your office, restaurant or home. I loved that this display was so interactive, where customers and clients can really feel, look at, pick up and mix and match the samples to get some ideas for their spaces. This is something that’s really important when exhibiting at a show like this and Innerspace definitely delivered!

IMG_E4359Playing around with samples
(My own image)

I couldn’t help myself and started playing around with their samples that were out on the table there and then, creating a scheme in my head and looking at how these different materials could work together. It made me seriously consider having a moss feature wall or even a small board for my room. They can make these panels in a tile format so that it’s easy to install and you can mix and match with the different materials they have to offer, to create a unique design on your wall, or they can even create rolls of the hay and wood surfaces for even easier application if you wanted a whole wall of it, which is also then better for the environment as it’s using less materials but will still have the same effect as having solid wood on the walls. Find out more about Innerspace on their website!



IMG_E4340Finsa Stand
(My own image)

Another display that was eye catching! It was made entirely out of MDF! This MDF shown by Finsa is called Superpan, which has a chipboard core, allowing it to be able to carry a lot of weight, making this material perfect for kitchen cabinets, chairs, tables, counter tops, stairs and even floors and ceilings! Very impressive!

IMG_E4341.jpgTable top, plate and cutlery made out of laser cut MDF
(My own image)

Finsa had a table and kitchen set on display that was made out of the same material. The whole stand was designed as if it were someone’s home, which you could then interact with and explore through virtual reality! I’ve never done virtual reality before, not even in gaming, so I thought I’d give it a try. It was pretty genius! You could see what colours and finishes the MDF could be produced in. This material can be used in a variety of different interior spaces such as offices, residential, third spaces, used for doors, in vehicles and in retail design. They offer alternative finishes on top of the MDF boards such as melamine, laminates and veneers.

Find out more about Finsa here.


Petrus Stand
(My own images)

These concrete tiles in Petrus’ display really caught my attention, especially in these colours! They’re so gorgeous and I love that you can see a bit of texture where the concrete dried with a few air bubbles in them.

Close up of concrete wall tiles
(My own images)

Another thing I found amazing about these tiles is how 3 dimensional they are. Petrus have a whole range of tiles that are different shapes, sizes, colours and designs. Some have lines carved in to them, some have raised geometric shapes that create shadows and pick up on lighting in interesting ways, creating dimension and variety. Find out more about Petrus here.

Tile of Spain

IMG_E4330Tile of Spain Stand
(My own images)

I automatically fell in love with this display. I went to Spain back in October 2017 for the first time ever and loved seeing all the different tile designs they had in the towns I visited, so this display really called out to me!

Different Spanish tiles on display at Tile of Spain
(My own images)

Tile of Spain had lots of different tile companies from Spain exhibiting within the space, full of a variety of different styles, shapes, colour combinations, textures, 3-dimensional elements and patterns to look at. The companies on display are listed below:

Cas Ceramica
Ceramica Elias
El Barco
Equipe Ceramica
Harmony By Peronda
ZYX by Colorker

There were so many different tiles in the space that I couldn’t pick a favourite as they were all so stunning! Find out more about Tile of Spain here.



IMG_E4373Set up inside Pintark Stand
(My own images)

The whole of Pintark’s display was covered with panels and boards of upholstered shapes in leather and other fabrics, mixed with metals and veneers. The detail in some of their designs was amazing, like the fan shaped leather covered tiles, each had their own colour combinations and quilted or embossed patterns on them which could create a really unique and visually contrasting wall.

Different displays of materials and surface displays by Pintark
(My own images)

It’s fantastic how they have taken these materials and thought of new or inventive ways to use them, such as combining metal, leather and wood to create a tessellating triangular and geometric wall-cover design, or creating a lighting panel with the same materials in a honeycomb pattern. I also love the large rose artwork they created out of small bits of rolled up mixed colour fabrics and split them up on to separate tiles, creating something that could be a stand alone art piece in anyone’s home. Find out more about Pintark here.


IMG_4391Treniq Stand
(My own image)

Treniq is like the Facebook and pinterest of the Interior Design world. An international social network for professionals in the industry, where you can build relationships and make connections with other designers as well as find furniture and products to use in your projects. You can find out more about Treniq here.

Timber Terrazzo, Coffee Grounds Bowl & Mushroom Mycellium
(My own images)

Though I found that all really interesting, what fascinated me the most was the range of materials, surface designs and products they had on display that showcased new inventions and technologies in the product design industry, especially the products that were sustainable and made from recycled materials. A terrazzo made from left over bits of timber, a bowl made out of old ground coffee beans and a materials made out of mushrooms and plant fibres!? How cool is that!? I thought these were so clever and amazing! Click the images to enlarge and find out more about what these materials are made out of!

IMG_4387Faux tiles, planks and panels made from recycled or mixed materials
(My own image)

They had tons of things on display, such as magnetic putty, glass fibre concrete, recycled plastic that looks like wooden planks, eco-friendly panels made from combined newspaper, cardboard and office/forest waste products, there was so much to look at or fan girl over. Find out more about them in the pictures below!

Glass Fibre Concrete slab, Environmental Composite Panel, Recycled Plastic plank, fused and recycled Glass and Ceramic silicastone and Magnetic Putty.
(My own images)

There it is! My top picks from the Surface Design Show. Did you go to the show? If so, did you see any of these on display? What did you think? What were your favourite designs or displays this year? Comment below!

Have a great week everyone!

Danica x


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