I can’t lie and say I wasn’t warned about the sheer scale of the Salone del Mobile, the annual Milano design festival! However, all the advice in the world couldn’t have prepared us for the miles we walked as we lapped up the best the design world has to offer.
We split our time between the Rho Fiera expo and the vast number of showrooms, installations and pop-up exhibits scattered around the city. It may have been a few weeks ago, but I feel like everything we absorbed in such a short space of time is only sinking in. There’s inspiration on every street and just so much to take in. Below are some of my highlights, things that will no doubt pop up over the next few months!
Valet Seated Bench; Stellar Works
Menton Desk; Pinch Design
Soft Edge Wooden Chairs; HAY
Vitra ‘Colour Machine’ installation; ©designkhora
MAD Architects ‘Invisible Borders’ installation; ©designkhoraBala Hi; Sé
‘Forest of Lights’ installation by Sou Fujimoto for Cos; ©designkhora
Armchair 03 Zant; Verywood
Essentiel Sofa; Saba Italia
Glas Suspension; Diesel with Foscarini
Square Trays; GAN
Surviving the Salone is no mean feat! If you’re lucky enough to be visiting in 2017, be sure to take some tips I was given, laughed off and was ultimately unbelievably grateful for the advice!
1. Establish a route. Whether you’re rambling through the city or tackling the expo, there is so much going on in so many places, knowing what you want to see is essential! In the days leading up to your visit, do some research on Instagram! There are plenty of hashtags to follow the week that help to define a shortlist.
2. Trainers. In one day we walked 20 miles. Enough said about that really…
3. Talk to people! There’s no better place to network. Give out your card to people you would like to work with, start conversations with someone if you like what they’re exhibiting. It’s refreshing to get the opportunity to have a conversation in person. At the same, beware of sales pitches and don’t be afraid to make a dash for the door!
4. Eat plenty of gelato – you’re in Italy!