Decor and Design

Everything We Loved At Design Joburg 2019

From a return to terracotta and texture, to Houtlander's new bench and even HL's own stand, there was so much to love at this year's Design Joburg.

Sarah de Pina

The third edition of Design Joburg is officially over, leaving the city in the glow of a design-filled weekend brimming with exciting design debuts and cutting edge presentations from some familiar favourites (and the success of House and Leisure’s very own stand at the event). Here are seven of the House and Leisure team’s takeaways from the expo, and be sure to follow our post-show coverage over the next few weeks to get even more insight from Design Joburg 2019.  

1. Texture and Terracotta 

Design Joburg | House and Leisure
The Tonic Design stand welcomed visitors to this year's Design Joburg Exhibition.


From the hessian-clad Tonic Design stand right at the entrance, to the La Grange Interiors Moorish courtyard-inspired space a few steps away, and SAOTA, ARRCC and OKHA’s earthen architectural pavilion: there was an abundance of terracotta and texture in the halls of Design Joburg this year. We love the way Tonic paired the colour with other sandy tones, like its ochre-coloured velvet armchairs, and the way that La Grange Interiors contrasted lighter shades of grey against its dark, dramatic, terracotta backdrop. 

Design Joburg | House and Leisure
The La Grange Interiors stand combined terracotta and texture effortlessly.
ALSO READ: Tonic Design's Creative Masterminds

2. Donald Nxumalo’s Pavilion

Design Joburg | House and Leisure
Donald Nxumalo captured the breezy spirit of Lamu Island at Design Joburg 2019.


In stark contrast to the more moody feeling of the fair this year was the extraordinarily light and breezy Donald Nxumalo pavilion. Nxumalo worked with Hertex and other HL favourites Millers Antiques to create an all-white-everything space. In it, he launched two fragrances as well as a diffuser and a range of candles – all inspired by the Kenyan island of Lamu. Always a fan favourite, this year Nxumalo did not disappoint! 

ALSO READ: Donald Nxumalo Designs Again For Hertex

3. Talks in the Tonic-Designed Kohler Theatre

Design Joburg | House and Leisure

The talks at this year’s event would give any other design conference a run for its money, with an eclectic and exciting mix of local and international speakers inspiring audiences.

We loved laughing along with lighting and furniture guru Michael Anastassiades, as well as sharing insights into the passion that Nigerian-born designer Yinka Illori had for his chairs. And their talks were made even more wonderful by the fantastically graphic and architectural Kohler Theatre space created for the talks by Tonic Design. 

Design Joburg | House and Leisure

4. Julia Day’s Elegant Launch

Generation founder Julia Day launched her eponymous brand at the fair this year with In-Residence — a living room-style space with a curved, organic fireplace that made us fall instantly in love. It was framed by dark oak bookshelves and a mix of furniture by De Padova designers including Vico Magistretti and Kensaku Oshiro.

'I’ve mixed old and new in order to demonstrate that with brands such as these, if it’s designed in 1985 or 2005, you can’t see the progression of time, and it’s because of their ethos,' Day says. 

5. Spa Zar Specials

Design Joburg | House and Leisure
The Houtlander x Mash T Design Studio bench formed part of the Spa Zar presentation.


For many of the participants at the show, there was much excited talk about the support that the design trade itself showed up for the fair this year. The Spa Zar section, designed to entice more buyers to support local design, featured about 30 local brands showing products that are ready for commercial production. Included in the offering was a new bench by Houtlander and Mash T Design Studio, with the latter's lamps also being featured. 

ALSO READ: 5 Creatives Each Design a Joburg-Inspired Space

6. Douglas & Douglas’ Outdoor Extravaganza

Design Joburg | House and Leisure

House and Leisure was the proud media partner of the Douglas & Douglas stand this year, which debuted its outdoor Ananas collection in collaboration with Sunbrella outdoor fabrics. It gave us shades of Mexico and Spain, but with a distinctly African flavour, and we love the elegant yet easygoing Douglas & Douglas aesthetic. 

ALSO READ: Durban’s Douglas & Douglas Brings the Heat To Design Joburg 2019

7. House and Leisure's Here / Now

This year we partnered with the brilliant people at Everard Read, Anatomy Design, Yudu Rugs, Tonic Design and Pazz Modernist for our Here / Now activation stand.

Readers and fans very much enjoyed the unusual mix of colours, inspired by the Andrzej Urbanski artwork on the wall, and we loved seeing you photograph your own House and Leisure magazine covers, and sharing them with us on social media.

Thanks to our amazing partners – and all you visiting readers – for making this year's Design Joburg one to remember. 

ALSO READ: 5 of the Editor's Favourite Joburg Houses