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In conversation with Cameron Design House

Introducing Cameron Design House: where Nordic and British elegance meet in lighting haven.

Cameron Design House Lighting
Lighting by Cameron Design House
In conversation with Cameron Design House
Clara Carlino de Paz
December 5, 2022

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Hi! We're so happy to talk to you. Could you give a brief introduction to Cameron Design House?

Cameron Design House specialises in sculptural, custom made chandeliers for commercial and high end residential clients. It was founded by Ian Cameron in 2014 and has developed into an international brand recognised across the globe for quality and design. Our studio is in St John’s Wood and our workshops are in Hertfordshire. 

What was the initial inspiration that led to Cameron Design House starting?

Ian studied Furniture Design and Product at university and from a young age was a maker. At the age of 16 he even worked in an electrical components shop and learned about electricity, which gave him the knowledge to progress into lighting. His inspiration comes from sculpture, always aiming to design something timeless and original.

Eight years after your foundation, Cameron Design House is already a globally recognised lightning supplier. How did you go about creating and growing the brand? 

Design, service, and attention to detail. Our workshop team is dedicated to quality craftsmanship, meticulously creating all our designs by hand, while our studio team excels at customer service and technical advice. Still, we always look at ways to grow and improve, for example, all our projects are regularly reviewed by our design panel to ensure that every piece we produce meets the aesthetic and technical standards we are renowned for. Also, working with some of the most highly regarded interior designers and architects around the world challenges us to push our boundaries in terms of design.

Now, to the shining protagonist: lighting! You're well known for your bespoke design process: could you walk us through it? From the first client meeting to the product delivery, how do you come up with the final result?

Lighting can truly change and transform a space and its energy. When we are developing a bespoke piece for a client it is important to understand the ultimate goal, will the pieces be the main feature or does it need to blend into the rest of the décor. Our sculptural pieces tend to highlight the drama of shadows and form, while our minimalist chandeliers tie in the rest of the elements in a room creating a comfortable, relaxed atmosphere. We enjoy the process of engaging with clients and together creating something unique for them and their space.  

How does Cameron Design House's workshop fit into this process? 

Cameron Design House workshops have always been at the heart of our operation and are extremely important to the running of the business – unusually we manufacture almost all components in-house allowing us to ensure quality and be totally flexible to meet our clients briefs. We have two workshops, one for production, and one in St. John’s Wood for design and prototyping. Our prototyping workshop allows us to develop and test ideas efficiently. It's also a great space to bring clients and designers to develop designs with them. 

What materials do you use for your lighting, and why those in particular?

We specialise in metal work, and our pieces are predominantly made from traditional materials used in the lighting industry. Brass is a stunning material to work with and we machine all our metal components in our machine shop using CNC and manual techniques. We also use glass; our pieces are contemporary, but also have an art deco feel in form and choice of materials.  

You've mentioned before your affinity for Nordic and British elements of design. How do you capture both styles in your lights? 

Ian shared his childhood between the UK and Finland, his mum being Finnish, and this has definitely influenced the look of our collection. We try to capture the elements of tranquillity and stillness from Finland and the design and manufacturing heritage of Britain and we feel our pieces hang in a sense of stillness and beauty. 

Could you tell us a little bit about your favourite brief or project you've carried out?

All our projects are special to us, and we are extremely lucky to have such a fantastic portfolio of international projects. One of our latest projects is House of Walpole, located at No.1 Palace Street, adjacent to His Majesty’s official London residence, with unique views of the Palace. The one-off residence features a curated mix of bespoke pieces from the best British luxury brands, including a custom-made Inari chandelier designed by us.

Your permanent light collection is stunning. Could you walk us through your favourite pieces?

Our current favourite piece is our latest chandelier, the Oksat. It is a sculptural exploration of light and shadow, consisting of illuminated glass tubes hanging at 90° angles and contrasting heights. We launched this in Milan in May and also showed it during Decorex 2022

It wouldn't be a 2022 interview without talking about the cost of living and rising energy prices. How have these factors affected the question of efficiency and the cost of production?

2022 has been a difficult year for many companies with the cost of manufacturing skyrocketing, but also the challenge of getting hold of raw materials. We have experienced difficulties sourcing our glass and metal and, unfortunately, witnessed some of our long-term suppliers having to close their doors due to the economic crisis. We’ve had to be very creative to remain competitive without compromising on quality.

We're almost at the end of the year! What does 2023 look like for Cameron Design House? Any sneak peeks?

Next year is going to be an exciting year for us as we are taking our first steps into furniture. We will be launching a few pieces in the early part of 2023. These pieces will be in our sculptural style and will incorporate a lot of high level manufacturing to achieve some truly special pieces.