Kelly Swallow, who is best knows for her colourful patchwork chairs and beautiful upholstered furniture, has taken some inspiration from one of the UK’s best loved artists…the unknown Banksy. For those of you who came across his street art you will probably recognise the image at the centre of this design. This chair’s simple soft colours, make it very versatile and perfect for a cosy stylish home.
Kelly Swallow’s Banksy chair. Photo courtesy of Kelly Swallow.
Islington has it’s fair share of Banksy treasures, decorating the walls a number of buildings on Essex road. Who would have thought that street art and upholstered furniture would be so compatible.
Islington is home to numerous vintage shops and stalls. I love to stroll down Camden Passage at the weekend and search through the little shops and antique dealers for a unique piece or a bargain. However Camden Passage is not the only place you can find vintage furniture in Islington. Walking along Essex Road past the Criterion Auction House you come to a more contemporary furniture shop.
Fandango has been based in Islington for the last 15 years, sourcing 20th century retro furniture and working with interiors designers.
The shop is a triangular shape and the small space is crammed with furniture, lights and mirrors. I wait outside on a blue bench made of metal piping. As I wait to take a peek inside I am joined by others waiting to take a browse around, I’m glad it’s a nice and sunny.
After some people come out of the shop I finally get to speak to the owner, John, who tells me how he got into the furniture business. John started collecting pieces for his own house, going to car boot sales and flea markets. While travelling in continental Europe he discovered his love for vintage 20th century design.
Since 2009 Fandango has also been representing the East London Art Collective Chish & Fips and their Neon Works.
So when you are next in Islington it may be worth treading off the beaten track onto Essex Road to have a look at what you can find.