Wooden Matters


It came and went in a whirlwind, but our week of events and workshops for London Design Festival in collaboration with Ma-tt-er brought together a fantastic mix of designers and researchers working with wood. We kicked off with talks by author of The Man Who Made Things Out of Trees, Rob Penn,  hearing all about his journey to create as many objects as possible from a single ash tree.


There were workshops exploring the process of kerfing with Lola Lely, natural wood dyeing with indigo thanks to textile designer Hazel Stark, and innovative joinery with waste plastics from Micaella Pedros.


Wrapping up with an evening of music from The Drones. Looking forward to doing it all again next year…




Following on from the success of last years Makers Playground, next week we’ll be hosting a series of talks and workshops for London Design Festival asking how wood can be pushed past tradition, past common knowledge and past standard use. How can it as a material be relevant to the moment and speak to the future?  We’ll have talks from TV author Rob Penn on his exploration of the ash tree, alternative joinery classes with Micaella Pedros, explorations of kerning (bending) wood from designer Lola Lely, wood dyeing with Hazel Stark, and discussion from ALP Technologies about the transformation of wood into an energy resource.

Check out our events page here to find out more and book your tickets.

Neon Know How


As Walthamstow is legendary for its Neon thanks to the fabulous God’s Own Junkyard, we felt it was about time to learn the secrets. So this weekend we welcomed Neon Workshops down from Wakefield to show us how its done.


Much harder than it looks seems to be the general opinion!


Glowing all the way home. To find out more visit: www.neonworkshops.com

Breaking Ground


We’re delighted to say that this month building work will start on a brand new extension that will house a new cafe space, education space, new ground floor studios and outdoor working area for members with additional storage. This is all thanks to the Mayor of London’s High Street Fund together with match funding from London Borough of Waltham Forest. We’ll also be welcoming back Turner Prize winning architects and design team Assemble who are leading on the design and build of the new space. So bear with us during construction, and we’ll keep you posted as the space transforms…

Underline Family Festival


Thanks to everyone who came down on Saturday for the Underline Family Activity Day with Art on the Underground.  Great bodging tools workshop, with new inventions such as a blackberry picker (shown above) for those out of reach berries!


Indigo dyeing experiments with artist Katharine May, toy boat building and more!


We’ll be hosting more family activity days soon, but watch out for our Wooden Matters series of events and workshops for London Design Festival. Check out our events page here to find out more.

Art on the Underground


It’s great to be located so close to the speedy Victoria line and we’re delighted to have been asked to be part of Underline – Art on the Underground’s public series of pop up events along its length from Brixton to Walthamstow. So on Saturday 3rd September, we’ll be hosting a special one of market (11-5pm) with kids activities and street food to welcome you back from your summer adventures.  Artist Jasleen Kaur will be running a family workshop called ‘Future Tools’ and the Blackhorse team will be hosting a special ornamental wooden boat making activity, (booking available shortly).  Head over to our events page to check out the full list of what’s happening.

Holiday Projects


We love this Ash coffee table made by new member Tim Aldridge, a chemistry teacher who knocked this up during his teacher’s summer holidays. Got some time off? Sign yourself up to the induction on the 21st or 27th August (Click here for the details) and get onto those projects before the holiday disappears!

London Calling

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Talking of playful installations, this one headed out of the workshop this week. Called ‘London Calling‘ and made by Mill and Jones for The Old Vic, it featured several phone booths which form part of an interactive experience relating to a new play ‘Rise‘. On answering the phone, you will discover a voicemail message left by a Londoner to someone in their life. The intriguing but anonymous voicemails include messages of unrequited love, gratitude, regret and confession.

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The phone booths will be installed down at Waterloo Millennium Green from 9 – 21 August daily from 10 – 9pm. To find out more, visit: http://www.oldvictheatre.com/news/2016/08/london-calling/

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Group Design’s WSO

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Who said August was a holiday? Many of our members are hard at work making new designs for this year’s London Design Festival in September (17 – 25 September).  Above is a sneak preview of Group Design’s new furniture collection: the WSO (Wedged Stool in Oak).
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The WSO Stool combines traditional joinery methods with a new take on the structure of the leg components to create an elegant and simple form. Made from Oak dowel and planks with Sapele wedges and dowels, they’ve used FSC certified timber and finished in a wax oil treatment to show the natural quality of the materials used. To place an early order or find out more visit http://www.groupdesign.co.uk or email richardwells@groupdesign.co.uk