Presented by the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce and co-produced by Novità Communications, BKLYN DESIGNS, held May 5-7 at the Brooklyn Expo Center, kicked off the first weekend of NYCxDESIGN. The events celebrate and showcase the impact of human-centric, Brooklyn-born design. The three-day show gave visitors the opportunity to attend panel discussions and workshops in addition to perusing exhibitor booths and special installations.
“With [BKLYN DESIGNS] being the only Brooklyn-focused anchor fair during NYCxDESIGN, the show attracted a diverse crowd of designers, buyers, vendors, and the general public,” said Andrew Hoan, president and CEO of the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce. “Our goal is to connect our local design community with larger business opportunities, and BKLYN DESIGNS provides an avenue to do just that.”
Workshops were complemented by a lineup of various panel discussions that explored the topics of architecture, design, social impact, sustainability, and technology for an audience of design trade and design-loving consumers. Panelist highlights included Ilias Papageorgiou, principal at SO-IL; Daniel Pittman, director of design at A/D/O; Vanessa DeLeon, owner and interior designer at Vanessa DeLeon Associates; and Genevive Gorder, interior designer and OXFAM Ambassador.
The show’s exhibitors were selected from a jury of industry experts, comprising an offering of the borough’s top creative and collaborative design community that is recognized globally. The BKLYN BUYS marketplace, a curated shopping section of the show, was filled with unique jewelry, ceramic objects, and accessories.
While reflecting on his experience at the show, renowned designer Todd Bracher, who kicked off the event with a keynote presentation, said, “It's important to have continuous dialogue with the design community, to learn, share, and challenge each other. Great design is born from culture and exchange. BKLYN DESIGNS provides a platform for which these insights can occur.”
In terms of product, some show highlights include textiles by Aimée Wilder Designs, Bolé Road Textiles, and New Market Goods, as well as technology pioneers such as Brooklyn Solar Works, OneButton, and Still Alive Lights. A handful of designers successfully launched their brands at the show, including Enitan Vintage, LWM Woodwork, and Frederick Tang Architecture’s latest line.