Something for everybody on the Brixton Design Trail

    Blast Skates in a new Brixton Station passageway shop – design-your-own-skateboard classes for kids during Design Trail Week

    Brixton’s second year as a London Design Festival district got under way at the weekend.

    From a railway arch in Loughborough Junction to the Department Store in the middle of town – the striking new HQ of Squires architects – events, installations and shopping opportunities reflect the range of creativity that makes Brixton unique.

    The Blog visited a small selection of what will be on offer until 24 September. You can see a full programme at the Brixton Design Trail website.

    Isabel Fletcher shows off her designs in The Department Store
    Isabel Fletcher shows off her designs in The Department Store

    Clothing created from recycled carpet underlay by designer Isabel Fletcher, who works in Simply Fabrics on Atlantic Road, shares the spotlight with the creation of a new typeface for the BBC by the internationally renowned type design company Dalton Maag with offices above Nando’s in the celebration …

    Hubb in Windrush SquareNot sheltering from the drizzle (right), but looking into Hubb, by AWMA Studio,  on Windrush Square. Hubb is the Arabic word for love. In Islamic communities, the mosque plays the role of a hub and the minaret is used to call the community for individual reflection and congregational gatherings.

    Brixton’s version takes the traditional minaret and flips it and clads it in mirrors – making it accessible for individual reflection and replaces the vocal call to a visual call for congregational gatherings.

    The #untranslation project supported by Market traders and Brixton Brewery is represented by banners translating words associated with love. The two below are
    Cafuné – to tenderly run your fingers through someone’s hair (Brazilian Portuguese); and
    Saudade – The presence of absence. A profoundly melancholic longing for something that is gone or lost. (Portuguese)

    Banners inside Brixton Village

    Ophélia Gisquet, head of interior design at UpCicle design studio, with the Roots Grow Love installation at Loughborough Farm, where she volunteers. Made from reclaimed wood – that will be re-used again – and designed by UpCircle in collaboration with the farm, it was put together by volunteers from the community and various organisations. It celebrates the joy of growing plants and the love this has produced in the community. Visit the farm (9am–6pm) or go online to see if you can win a pot by saying in one sentence what love means to you.

    Street artist ATM, who created the Chaffinch on the wall outside Loughborough Farm, is creating a thrush inside as part of this year's design trail
    Street artist ATM, who created the Chaffinch on the wall outside Loughborough Farm, is creating a thrush inside as part of this year’s design trail


    Made with love by the locally based  Art 4 Space community, the #lovestop installation in the former Brixton food court invites you to take a card with a wellbeing tip and photograph yourself with it by your favourite #lovestop.


    Silent ArchSilent Arch in the former Brixton food court by Brixton-based design studio Bharat&Jean is a pastiche of Network Rail’s arches the other side of Atlantic Road and reflects on recent developments in the area. The arches – scarred by evictions – have become a powerful symbol of love and support from the community, says the studio. Walk through the tunnel to pay tribute to the past in an installation that also echoes traditional triumphal arches and reflect on the future of Brixton.

    Silent Arch

    Ted HoughtonTed Houghton of houghtonnassiri working on his knitted designs in one of the new shop spaces in Brixton Station Passageway. A Clapham resident, he is moving his studio across West London from Ladbroke Grove to Queen’s Park – there’s nowhere affordable locally, he says.

    t-shirt sale
    Celebrating a first t-shirt sale in a passageway pop-up


    Take a Seat created by Edible Bus Stop, who are based in a railway arch in Loughborough Junction, is a celebration of public seating and its role it in positive social interaction and cohesion. Painting seats in Windrush Square is designed to draw attention to how we dwell in public space and relate to each other. Dazzle, aka “Razzle Dazzle”, is a camouflage technique that was developed for warships in WW1. The seats will remain stay in the square.


    Edible Bus Stop HQ in Loughborough Junction
    Edible Bus Stop HQ in Loughborough Junction


    The design trail has plenty of opportunities to get involved in design yourself. Kaylene Alder, who creates illustrations for Brixton Blog & Bugle, ran a lino cut workshop in The Department Store