VERDEN by OTHER WORKS
On the corner of a ramshackle row of victorian terraced houses, and only a stones throw from the increasingly hip Lower Clapton Road is Verden, one of East London's newest establishments. Verden is a restaurant, wine bar and deli that has been beautifully designed by Pippa Murray and Simon Lamason of Other Works.
We remember the site of Verden as a rowdy and run down pub, the transformation is incredible. It has a minimal and Scandinavian inspired interior with cool colours and simple lines. Other Works have also made some of Verden's furniture themselves, from the leather back chairs to the clever hanging chopping boards which are used to serve the yummy cheese and charcuterie.
It was a pleasure to photograph and style Verden. We thoroughly recommend a visit to check out the stunning interior and try the delicious food and wine!
TELL US ABOUT 'OTHER WORKS'
SL Other Works is a design company that works across interiors and products, specialising in furniture and all things wood. Pippa has a background in interior architecture, an MA in design products from the Royal College of Art and has run her own furniture company for the last four years. I have a background in industrial design and design strategy, working both in-house and as a consultant. Other Works was born from our love of making; we have different backgrounds but complimentary skills and expertise, and take pride in crafting a lot of what we design.
HOW DID YOU GET INTO FURNITURE AND INTERIOR DESIGN?
PM I've been interested in furniture since I was little, and as a child spent a lot of time in antique shops with my parents and doodling interiors and buildings. I always dreamed of traditional furniture making and after my masters went to live in Cumbria to pursue my passion.
SL I have always been hands on since studying industrial design and working as a prop maker for Lord of the Rings. Unfortunately since then I had spent most of my time behind a computer, until I bought my own house which needed a lot of work and provided the opportunity to be more hands on. I enjoyed learning the ins and outs of designing and building which directly lead to the Verden bar project with Pippa.
WHAT INSPIRED THE DESIGN OF VERDEN?
SL Tom and Ed the owners of Verden wanted a space that was clean, modern and unique. To achieve this we kept a minimal palette of natural materials which allowed the wine, the food and the customers to bring the vibrancy to the space. We particularly love the protective burning or charring of wood in Japanese and Scandinavian architecture and also the beautiful English timbers that Pip has extensive knowledge of from her time in Cumbria.
PM Bringing out the best in the material for the specific function or use is what inspires us the most
THERE ARE LOTS OF BESPOKE PIECES OF FURNITURE AND LIGHTING MADE FOR VERDEN, TELL US ABOUT THEM
PM The bespoke pieces came from our desire to create a complete experience with continuity running from the design scheme through to the furniture, chopping boards and fittings. We know some great craftsmen in Cumbria and worked very closely with them. Jonathan Leach was the star in turning both the large lampshade and small pendants lights. For the large lamp he had never turned anything so big and had to customise his lathe for the purpose. We also designed and made the high chairs and barstools ourselves just round the corner from Verden in our workshop.
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT MAKING YOUR WORK?
SL Crafting raw materials by your own hand and seeing something you imagined come to life.
PM I love the satisfaction of creating beautiful, seamless joints that simply tap into place. And knowing that that extra bit of care will hopefully be around far longer than me.
WHO ARE YOUR DESIGN HEROES?
PM George Nakashima
SL Peter Zumthor
WHAT OR WHO IS YOUR DREAM JOB/ CLIENT? AND WHO WOULD YOU LIKE TO OWN YOUR WORK?
PM We were pretty close to it with Verden; a client that we had a strong shared vision with, who gave us the freedom to bring it to life as we saw fit. We are happy for anyone who values the story and craft behind what we do to own our work.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE SPACE AND WHY?
SL I loved Peter Zumthor’s Serpentine Pavilion from a few years ago. The inner courtyard and garden is an oasis of calm.
PM I love to visit Blackwell house, Cumbria, a beautiful example of spatial design and furniture from the arts and crafts era.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE BAR/RESTAURANT AND WHY?
SL I went to White Rabbit in Dalston recently after a long hiatus. I had forgotten how much I enjoy their food.
PM Tough question... I guess inspirationally, it would be Belgo in the early nineties. The interior blew my teenage mind! Nowadays I’m drawn to street food markets for the easy buzz and pick and mix of the cuisine – there’s no food envy when you share!