Now in its second year, Design Joburg, featuring Rooms on View, has already become one of the most anticipated shows on the South African design calendar, with a choice selection of interior decorators, designers, homeware brands and industry suppliers presenting beautifully curated ‘roomscapes’ and new collections in impeccably styled settings. It takes place this weekend, the 25th to the 27th of May at the Sandton Convention Centre.

ELLE DECORATION is proudly presenting our own booth, boasting a sophisticated contemporary African flavour, curated by Deco’s décor Stylist, Sanri Pienaar and décor Assistant Pieter von Wielligh. ‘We wanted to create an inviting, interactive, gallery-like space that also serves as a lounge where visitors can take a seat and admire some of the design pieces on display while meeting the DECO team,’ Sanri explains.‘It’s a contemporary space that allows African design to shine through without dominating; we’ve gone for a subtle, sophisticated look that mixes contemporary and traditional pieces in an understated manner. The palette is the real “hero” of the space, rather than the individual pieces: muted earthy tones with bright pops of cobalt, olive green and terracotta. Texture is equally important, from basketry to the tactile linens used in the upholstery.’

‘It’s a truly South African collaboration, but with a hint of international élan,’ she says.

Our collaborators include family-owned, heritage company Woodbender, renowned for its traditionally handcrafted wooden furniture, all made at its factory in Cape Town. For our booth, Woodbender turned the table on its typical classic styling with an element of surprise, reinventing a well-known chair in a bold electric blue hue – echoed in its comfortable two-seater sofa in a bright pop of cobalt. The brand’s popular upholstered stools get a rethink in textured neutral linens. All the fabrics were supplied by Hertex, adding a pronounced tactile element to the custom-made pieces. ‘Hertex has an incredible range of woven fabrics in cottons and linens, which we wanted to celebrate in our booth,’ Sanri adds.

Beautiful and timelessly elegant wooden flooring by Oggie Hardwood Flooring creates the foundation for the look and feel of the space, both opening it up and lending warmth. The paler tones of the wood and the arrangement of the flooring in a classic length-wise configuration add a subtle touch of nostalgia. This is complemented by the subtle hue of the walls, painted in Heavenly Springs by Dulux, an off-white with an undertone of sage green.

A bespoke screen by contemporary furniture design brand Lemon makes a statement with its artful covering of wallpaper from its latest collection – ‘Horizon’, from Edition Two, a soft and serene forest-like scene – and walnut edging. The booth also features Lemon’s glamorous ‘Hope’ armchair in luxe sage-green velvet and the ‘Portman’ side table, introducing a pop of earthy pink to the space.

Adding to the mix is a super-stylish trio of geometrically shaped coffee tables in a variety of wood and marble tops with brass legs by Egg Designs.

Houtlander’s elegant round dining table is a perfect example of the well-crafted minimalist wooden furniture for which the brand is celebrated, signifying the essence of contemporary South African design.

Emerging South African artist Jeanne Gaigher’s painterly screen blurs the boundary between art and design, making art interactive and interchangeable (don’t miss her solo exhibition in November at SMITH Gallery).

On display in our gallery are woven baskets and ‘Hilford’ pots by Design Afrika; alongside beautiful wooden benches, stools and bowls from Amatuli – Johannesburg’s go-to spot for authentic African pieces. The immensely talented and original artist everyone is watching, Ben Orkin, custom made two ceramic vases especially for DECO (catch our Q&A with him in the June issue of ELLE Deco). Adding a playful and cool international design element are Seletti’s iconic Sitting Monkey Lamp, Palazzo Battistero tea set from the Palace Collection, and Seletti and Diesel Living’s Cosmic Dinner Brass Salad Bowl – all from Johannesburg design emporium Generation.

Lastly, our ELLE DECORATION signage was supplied and installed by the ultra-dependable Marnus Botha of SEEK Group, whom we can’t recommend enough!

Design Joburg is the not-to-be-missed event this weekend, so make sure you come down and say hello to our editor-in-chief, Leigh Robertson, and the rest of the Deco team. Tickets are available via Webtickets or through the Design Joburg site.

Images by Sarah de Pina.