Friday, 27 May 2011

Private view invitation for I&L Futures companies

Post Gay Penfold
Interiors & Lifestyle Futures is delighted to invite our network of companies to Private Views of the work of this year’s graduating students from Birmingham Institute of Art and Design, Birmingham City University.

The private views are aimed specifically at industry/companies, giving you the chance to view the exciting work produced by students from our Fashion, Product and Interior design and Jewellery degree courses.

The Jewellery Show Industry Private View: Tuesday 14 June (6pm to 8pm), School of Jewellery Vittoria Street B1 3PA

Fashion, Product and Interior design Show Industry Private View: Wednesday 15 June (6pm to 8pm), BIAD,Gosta Green B4 7DX

Location maps are available here
To book for an evening please email:

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Business opportunity database to bring companies together

We’re always meeting new and dynamic companies within the interiors and lifestyle industries and many have synergies that could lead to collaborative opportunities. The trouble is that all this synergy data does not exist in a usable format that can help broker company relationships.

To this end, we’re working with collaboration expert Ken Thompson who has a track record of bringing together diverse communities of businesses to grow sales and enter new markets. He is helping us to develop an opportunity and business networking database to intelligently connect and match West Midlands’ interiors and lifestyle companies.

We recently ran a workshop with several Interiors & Lifestyle Futures companies as part of the development process. Given their very positive feedback we intend to drive this database forward.

Companies participating in the business opportunity database workshop

“The rationale of this database is to keep business alive within the West Midlands.” Chandru Ray, md Ecolec

“Growing sales is my aim and I’m happy to be part of this initiative.” David Hendley, md

We would welcome your comments and views. Is this the sort of thing that would interest your company? If so please get in touch with Navin Sood or 0121 331 7925.

Monday, 23 May 2011

Free promotion and networking opportunity 22 June

Post Frank Cooper
Everyone in the Interiors & Lifestyle Futures community is invited to 'The Big Show and Tell' on 22 June at the Hawthorns, home of West Bromwich Albion FC.

This will be an excellent opportunity for West Midlands companies to promote their products and services to other Interiors & Lifestyle Futures businesses. You are very welcome to bring along samples, examples, brochures or anything else of interest to other Interiors & Lifestyles companies and individuals.

Don't miss this chance to exhibit your company for FREE and make some potentially lucrative connections!

I'm also delighted that renowned broadcaster and author, Dr Carl Chinn, MBE, Professor of Birmingham Community History at Birmingham University will be joining us. Carl will be considering the industrial heritage of the Midlands and why he believes we are still a major industrial force with much to offer British as well as global markets.

Professor Carl Chinn, MBE

And, if you know of any companies that could benefit from attending this event and becoming part of Interiors & Lifestyle Futures, make sure you let them know. All are welcome and everyone attending will be entered into a prize draw.

Don’t miss the opportunity to meet new business contacts. This could be someone that can offer you a vital new business opportunity or that missing link or contact you have been seeking. Or, they may know someone who you should be talking to about your products and services.

Time:22 June 2011 9.00-12.00 followed by a buffet lunch.
Venue: the Hawthorns, home of West Bromwich Albion

To indicate your interest, please register at: Event Elephant

For more information phone 0121 331 7925
or email:

Friday, 20 May 2011

Showcase opportunity: Toronto Show 6-11 August

Post Pat Steele

This August there's a prestigious giftware and lifestyle show in Toronto. This is a wonderful showcase and collaboration opportunity for Interiors & Lifestyle Futures companies designing and manufacturing high quality, high value, innovative giftware and tableware.

Canada remains an important market for Giftware and lifestyle products, with a retail market worth approximately C$10 billion in retail sales. British made branded products have traditionally sold very well in Canada. British quality and design is recognised and appreciated, and there is always interest in products that offer something new and different to the current ‘mix’.

Benefits for companies
-participation in a group visit from within Interior & Lifestyle industries.
-opportunity to experience first- hand a high profile exhibition in Canada.
-opportunities to meet potential business partners or representatives in market
-excellent networking opportunity
-new contacts and shared market intelligence within the group.
-reduced costs through package offered.
-support of International Trade Adviser pre and post and during the event

Support Package includes:
-participation in Showcase stand at the CGTA show
-carefully targeted audience invited to the showcase stand
-in market support from staff of British Consulate Toronto and UKTI International Trade advisers
-travel grant subject to qualifying criteria

Any Interiors & Lifestyle Futures companies wishing to take part need to complete an application by Tuesday 31 May.

Please contact me, Pat Steele, for an application form and/or further information.

T: 01782 202222/224401

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Want to know how to make the most of tendering?

Post Adrian Burns
If you’d like to know a lot more about the art of tendering, there are a few places left on our expert one-day workshop, Maximising Tendering Opportunities on Wednesday 25 May.

Andrea Childs from Klick Solutions and Roy Casey, Success Train, are specialists in tendering and performance improvement.

Andrea will lead the morning session (9.00 -12.30), which will focus on sourcing business opportunities, responding to PPQs and the tender process.

Andrea Childs, Klick Business Solutions

Roy’s afternoon session (13.15-16.30) will address supply chain models, forming collaboration partnerships and strategies for winning tenders.

Roy Casey, Success Train

Venue: Birmingham Science Park Aston Holt St, B7 4BB

To secure a spot on this workshop, free to eligible companies, please go to:
Event Elephant or phone Interiors & Lifestyle Futures's Iain Acton on 0121 331 7922

Monday, 16 May 2011

Discount for I&L Futures members

Post Dawn Meaden-Johnson

Birmingham School of Jewellery is offering registered members of Interiors & Lifestyle Futures a 10% discount on its short courses this summer . Just click here to view all the courses in the programme.

To book please contact me, Dawn Meaden-Johnson, on 0121 248 4584 (Monday to Thursday 9am to 2.30pm). Remember to quote PWBCU10 and confirm you are a registered member of Interiors & Lifestyle Futures for your discount.

Here are some examples with descriptions, full fees and dates.

Tuesday 5 July Fee £175
3D SCANNING: FROM OBJECT TO COMPUTER TO MODEL: an ideal opportunity for hands-on experience of exciting new 3D technology. Gain practical knowledge about Roland LPX600 and Cimcore Infinite Arm scanning systems. 3D Scanning is not an entirely suitable for reproducing a complete item of jewellery but is an extremely useful tool for replicating a variety of single component items across various creative or manufacturing industries. No previous knowledge of CAD is required.

1-3 August Fee £345
CAD RHINO: AN INTRODUCTION: a reasonably priced Computer Aided Design (CAD) software package suitable for jewellers and other creative industries. Covers the creation of 2D lines and curves to produce 3D surfaces and solid models for client presentation, digital model making and/or manufacture. Generate a true 3D representation of your design and build your skills using step-by-step practical tutorials and tutor guidance. This course also covers Flamingo Rendering and Tech Gems. No previous CAD experience is necessary.

Image courtesy of Birmingham City University
28-30 June Fee £375
POLISHING FOR JEWELLERS & SILVERSMITHS MASTERCLASS: Precision metal polishing is one of the skills that can make or break in minutes a piece that has taken hours to make. Learn some of the tips and techniques of the trade that give a more professional finish to your work. Cover traditional methods, machinery techniques. Antique restoration techniques and the care of polished silver are also included. No sample jewellery items will be available for you to practise on, it is essential you bring your own. Suitable for students with jewellery and silversmithing skills, or those wishing to extend their knowledge from other disciplines such as design and sculpture.

Venue: Birmingham City University School of Jewellery or Jewellery Industry Innovation Centre, Vittoria Street, Birmingham B1 3PA