Preston might be my Paris but Burnley is our Milan!

by

It was great to listen to Radio 4 last week and hear the guys from Preston is my Paris discussing their love for the city while describing their inspiration for their new exhibition.

Obviously taking their name from the classic Clarke’s shoes advert of some years ago, they run an ezine of the same name and had just launched their new exhibition. Wish I’d known about it earlier as I’d love to have gone to the launch, had it not been the same night as Design Conscious‘ private opening of their new trade showroom.

The Design Conscious Reception

Featuring the design world’s biggest names, Design Conscious stock everything the contemporary living space would ever need. The showroom has been open for a while but the new lighting section has literally only gone live this week.

Leon Lemmen (KFF), Jacqui Jones (Design Conscious), Janet Robinson (Inspire Bespoke) and Piergiovanni Longarini (Rotaliana)

Leon Lemmen (KFF), Jacqui Jones (Design Conscious), Janet Robinson (Inspire Bespoke) and Piergiovanni Longarini (Rotaliana)

Owned by a good friend of mine, Jacqui Jones, and business mentor extraordinaire, this was never going to have been an ordinary night.

For a start she hired award-winning chef, Iain Martin, to do the catering and to ensure that it reflected style, cosmopolitanism and exceptional taste. So it really was a case of Burnley meets Milan. We dined on mini pizzas, smoked salmon breadsticks, Lancashire cheese and gooseberry chutney tartlets,  mini fish and chips, black pudding, Italian sausage and tiramisu chocolate cups….among other things…..gastronomic heaven.

Iain Martin's divine selection

Iain Martin's divine selection

The evening was a stunning success – the showroom jaw droppingly comprehensive in its selection of design-led lighting.

Johnson Akinbinu relaxing in an outdoors wonderland!

Johnson Akinbinu relaxing in an outdoors wonderland!

If you love Flos, Foscarini, Rotaliana, Serralunga, B.Lux, Artemede, Kundalini, Luceplan and Kartell, then this is your nirvana! Drink up furniture by Starck, Castiglione, Giovannoni and, of course, the divine creations of Mr Grcic!

The NW's designerati flock to Design Conscious

The NW's designerati flock to Design Conscious

It’s amazing when you  get talking to people just how much creative talent resides in the local area and naturally, birds of a fleather…….

Admiring the iPod docking station with a huge difference - Diva, Rotaliana

Admiring the iPod docking station with a huge difference - Diva, Rotaliana

No doubt the design world will be talking about this night for a long time. Very interesting chatting to the likes of Leon (KFF) and Piergiovanni (Rotaliana) about how business is conducted elsewhere throughout Europe and Italian cuisine (thanks for the cooking tips!!)

MMU's David Edmundson-Bird enjoying some bubbles with Business Link NW's PR Office, Gina Rand

MMU's David Edmundson-Bird enjoying some bubbles with Business Link NW's PR Officer, Gina Rand

Outside Design HQ braving the wind and rain - Blofield and Lady Mary

Outside Design HQ braving the wind and rain - Blofield and Lady Mary

My favourite lights had to be the Lady Mary by Serralunga and the stunning conical Kampazar by B.Lux – oddly both outdoors but uber stylish! Added to which the Lutyens style bench by Serralunga an equal winner in the style stakes for me.

Gina Rand, PR and Marketing Officer at Business Link NW did not leave empty-handed either – her long lusted-after Stone Stool by Starck for Kartell finally came home with her!

Gina Rand falls for a Caboche light but walks out with a stool!

Gina Rand falls for a Caboche light but walks out with a stool!

Don’t forget therefore that Design Conscious isn’t all lights, there’s a huge selection of furniture and the wall of chairs is a sight to behold – and even then the wall is just the tip of a huge Chair iceberg! I’m lusting after the KFF dining chairs in white leather but my other half isn’t a fan of white.

The incredible wall of chairs!

The incredible wall of chairs!

It was a great night and thanks, Jacqui, for the effort you put into a throughly enjoyable evening.

(PS We were very pleased to be able to use the area as a backdrop for some of our own new stock, Saffron Winds, marrying their new recycled range of former Cambodian rice bags into stylish new bags with cutting edge Philippe Starck – groovy!)

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2 Responses to “Preston might be my Paris but Burnley is our Milan!”

  1. Rhonda Says:

    Thanks, that is a very good article. I found it via MSN and immediately incorporated into my feedreader. I am pleased to soon be back here to read again! Best greets

  2. Daniel Meadows Says:

    Was at Preston’s ‘Word Soup’ at the Continental last night with writer Sofie Fowler for the amusingly acronymed P.I.M.P event. You missed a really good night all round, and I hadn’t ever seen that advert, thanks for posting it.

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