Published on July 11, 2017 | by Alastair Gilmour


Not just good but dead good

Ever wondered where all that lovely café, hotel and bar furniture came from? Here’s one answer

It’s not quite in the realms of the old television advert where entrepreneur Victor Kiam liked his Remington electric shaver so much he bought the company, but an item of furniture had a similar effect on one of the directors of Wylam Brewery.

The Harvey three-seat sofas ordered by Rob Cameron for the reception area at its Palace of Arts headquarters inspired him into buying one for home.

The sofa was designed by Newcastle company Deadgood, owned by Elliot Brook and Dan Ziglam, who runs their London office. The Wylam commission is one of hundreds of “products with personality” that Deadgood has fulfilled in bars, restaurants, offices and hotels all over the world. And, where the parts or materials or construction don’t allow Elliot and Dan to manufacture in the North East, the insistence is elsewhere in the UK and not abroad. The Deadgood range consists of design-led furniture – soft seating, chairs and stools – lighting, tables for all occasions, and accessories such as bookends, mirrors and clocks. If you also need a stylish doorstop, Deadgood has one.

Elliot likes to call his team of eight designers and the freelancers he calls on “a family of lean, green and keen band of pirates”.

Deadgood had been working with North East-based interior designer Julie Chambers for a number of years – she has a long association with Wylam Brewery designing pubs and clubs – but it was a specification for another job that didn’t come off that introduced Elliot to Rob Cameron.

Elliot says: “He came to our studio and saw some of our products and was so impressed with the settees he bought one for himself. We had already been working with Wylam on cross-promotional events with our London office for three or four years, with them supplying beer for a Beer And Beats event celebrating Clerkenwell Design Week, so we had built up a great relationship which developed from there.

“Our angle is to support local businesses which we’ve been doing for ten years. We’ve always been quite agile in how we work.

“London is obviously the biggest market for us by far, but we’ve designed furniture for hospitality projects in Dubai; The Baltic Kitchen in Gateshead; The Core at Science City development and Toffee Factory main entrance, reception and meeting rooms, plus Live Works in Newcastle; Northern Design Centre at Gateshead Quays; the Taproom at Drygate Brewery in Glasgow; Mirabelle Bakery, Copenhagen; the Handmade Burger Co, Newcastle; Tyneside Cinema; Transpennine Express first class lounge, Huddersfield; BBC Broadcasting House, London, and a hotel in Azerbaijan which was a really interesting one.

“Our route to market is through architects and interior designers all coming from our UK networks and supply chains which makes it easier. We also recently got quite a big project from Liverpool FC – 300 pieces for a hospitality suite.

“Most of our business is in the commercial field, the workplace. Millennials want their workplaces and offices to be a home-from-home with sofas, booths and café areas, so our products will echo domesticity with an eclectic, design-led element.”

So, the next time you wallow in Wylam Brewery upholstery, wait for a train at Huddersfield Station, or check into the Boulevard Hotel Baku in Azerbaijan, think of your surroundings as Deadgood – created with style in Newcastle.

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Alastair Gilmour

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