Where some folks see scrap wood, metal or rusty old bike parts, The Rag and Bone Man sees a whole world of potential. He finds those unloved bits of something else and transforms them into wonderfully evocative Art Deco/Machine Age-inspired lighting, each one unique. He’ll be at Tent London, but luckily enough for us, he’s here on our blog first…
When did you know that you wanted to design? I grew up in a family of makers, so design was definitely in my genes, however The Rag and Bone Man was gradually built on my love of metal and that mainly came from tinkering with bikes when I was younger.
What are you most proud of in your work? My proudest moments are when I have completed a new piece. Each item is unique and fitted with a small metal plaque, which includes the date of completion and individual serial numbers for everything I make.
What kind of material do you think has great possibilities? I like to think that any material has potential, especially scrap! It’s where I get my inspiration. Looking at the way objects or component parts are originally designed and applying new ideas and functions to them.
Which product would you redesign if you could? In a sense each of my designs is a redesign of the scrap parts that I source. I regularly use components from old Push and Motorbikes in my lamps which has given me a new way of looking at bike design as a whole but ultimately I want keep on pushing my lamp and furniture designs further and further.
Which designer has inspired your work? I am inspired by urban environments and love living and working in London. The Lloyds building in the City of London designed by Architect Richard Rogers inspires me every time I see it. I love the way he externalized all of the fundamental elements of the building such as the lifts and the staircases.
What designers you know should we watch out for? I really love the wooden Washi Tables designed and made by Adam Connolly and Matt Copeland with Family Tree London. I believe they are also exhibiting a new series of tables this year at Tent London.
What are you looking forward to about being at Tent? Launching The Rag and Bone Man – it’s the first time I have had a stand and am looking forward to meeting other designers, the public and anyone who would like to know more about what I do.
What’s your next grand plan? I would be really interested to start collaborating more with interior designers on case by case projects, making lighting, furniture and fittings. I love to personalize the pieces I make so fabricating for individual clients would be a natural addition to making the lamps.
What do you get up when not being a brilliant, cutting-edge designer? Describe your perfect day off… I have too many bicycles so I would probably get out of the studio and discover a new part of London on two wheels.
Tell us a secret. Ornamental Conifer
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