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Find vintage Polish posters, cute ceramic tableware and intricate architectural models at the Fed Square bazaar's tenth year

The Melbourne Design Market will gather Australia’s most innovative makers of fashion, artwork and all the unusual things in between. We spoke to five left-field designers you won't want to miss. Here are some of our top picks for the Melbourne Design Market...

Sklep

Describe your collection in one sentence.
Original poster art from the communist era of Poland.

What inspired you to start Sklep?
We purchased an amazing film poster in Krakow many years ago which led us to start a personal collection which soon got a little out of hand.

What surprises people about your collection?
Most people get really excited about viewing a range of posters which, in terms of graphics, design and colour richness, defies the fact that they're up to 65 years old. There have been a number of posters viewed by Polish expats which have stirred their emotions and memories and evoked poignant stories regarding their past life in Poland.

What do you love about exhibiting at the Melbourne Design Market?
We always look forward to having a dialogue about the history, the famous designers, the different genres and the role of the government which have all resulted in this fabulous collection of poster art.

Tufts Design

Describe your collection in one sentence.
Tableware with simple functionality and a playful aesthetic.

What’s your favourite material to work with?
Clay is a wonderful medium that allows for unlimited creativity.

Where do you turn to for inspiration when you’re stuck for ideas?
The environment around me: city streets, travel and music or reading.

What do you love about exhibiting at the Melbourne Design Market?
I really enjoy the atmosphere – it’s busy and energetic. Customers are really interested in how and where things are made.

A lot of your products are quite Melbourne-centric – you make Skipping Girl and Luna Park cups! Tell us about that.
Many of my pieces go overseas as gifts, so it’s lovely to feel that I can bring a little Melbourne to people who miss it.

Curator Company: photo display

Describe your collection in one sentence.
Elegant functionality using minimal form.

What inspired you to start the Curator Company?
I come from a mixed career of sculpture, graphic design, digital media, furniture design and IT. I wanted to set up a studio practice where each of these elements could inform each other.

What do you love about exhibiting at the Melbourne Design Market?
The designs being sold there are of a very high standard. When I first exhibited at the Melbourne Design Market, I was so overwhelmed! I felt like Ralph Macchio turning up to the National Finals for the first time in Karate Kid I.

In our world of digital photographs, do you think that the act of printing and displaying photos has become even more special?
On social media and image sharing sites, there is an unrelenting flow of photos. But if you place a printed image on your wall, you live with it. You walk past it daily, you glance at it occasionally and sometimes you focus and remember the occasion. These images don't move, scroll, get liked or commented on by strangers. Maybe this why they are special.

Secret River

Describe your collection in one sentence.
Home textiles in natural fibres which are beautifully simple and luxurious.

What inspired you to start Secret River?
I’d been selling highly decorative home textiles for a decade, but I found myself increasingly drawn to the base cloth: keeping the product true to the original fabric. I also went on several wilderness walks with my family, where we carried everything we needed for seven or eight days. I felt this amazing sense of freedom and clarity about what’s really important in life.

What surprises people about your collection?
The value for money. Because we work directly with fabric mills and makers, we’re able to produce a great quality product for a really competitive price.

Where do you turn to for inspiration when you’re stuck for ideas?
I go for a walk in the bush. I stop and look at the smallest things – a leaf, a piece of bark, patterns in water, rusting metal – I have so many ideas that I drive my family nuts!

Little Building Co

Describe your collection in one sentence.
Detailed architectural models that feel like they came from the architect’s own studio.

What inspired you to start Little Building Co?
While trying to renovate an old house I found myself studying every other house.

Where do you turn to for inspiration when you’re stuck for ideas?
I don't seem to suffer from a lack of ideas. My dilemma is always “how am I going to do that?” In these situations I go off and boil the kettle. I drink a fair amount of tea!

Your Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum model requires people to assemble it. Why this particular building?
I was actually asked by the Guggenheim Museum if I could make a model kit of their building after their marketing manager was sent one of my Queensland houses.

By Rose Johnstone   |  

Melbourne Design Market 2014 details

Address
Carpark
Swanston St, Melbourne 3000

Telephone 03 9655 1900

Transport
Nearby Stations: Flinders Street

Price FREE
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Date Sun 20 Jul

Open 10am-5pm

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