Designers on your doorstep

Thomas Halliday

Dictionary responds to the theme of Home by itself being a home for books. Dictionary is a place to store words. It is where you can keep the stories that are close to your heart, within a dedicated and special space, and celebrate the warmth and personalisation that they bring to your house. Based on a traditional barrister's bookcase, Dictionary is a pared-back, modern and minimalist interpretation of this familiar essential.

Dictionary epitomises understated elegance, yet its simple functionality belies the attention to detail and consideration that has led to its creation. The timeless design is versatile - the individual units can be easily stacked, used separately, and adapted to your needs, to fit the aesthetic of your home. Dictionary can display not just books, but the other personal elements with which you choose to decorate your unique space. Books make a house a home, and deserve to live in a proper place that honours the value they bring to your life. Dictionary offers a clean, elegant way to both store and protect your collection, whilst showcasing their titles and colours. Handmade with care and love, Dictionary can be custom made and sized to suit your needs and your space.

IMAGE > Thomas Halliday, <em>Dictionary</em>, 2021, pine and stainless steel, 120 x 110 x 40 cm. Image courtesy of the artist.
Not for sale

I’ve become more aware of my surroundings, and how to be even more innovative and creative with limited resources and minimal access to additional construction elements. This has forced me to reimagine the boundaries of design, while refining my interpretation of home and what it really means to us all.

I primarily create and develop my pieces from my home base. I’ve had more unrestricted time to work through my designs, away from many of the distractions of everyday life and competing priorities we all find ourselves experiencing. I’ve noticed more time to consciously reflect on my work and the emotional connections different materials and elements elicit in me - something I hope to tap into more, both for myself and with clients, to inform and enhance my future pieces.

I’ve noticed more time to consciously reflect on my work

In walking around my wider neighbourhood, I’ve found an unexpected piece of creativity in an otherwise fairly standard residential area - an amazing corner building covered in full-scale graffiti-style artwork. It features natural tones of green and brown, including a larger-than-life kookaburra. I love the way it’s completely surprising when the unsuspecting passerby first glimpses it, but also how it somehow blends seamlessly into its environment. I feel it makes a statement on how human design often replaces the original natural elements of an area, but that it doesn’t have to be this way - design can be sensitive to the environment and honour nature and its importance.

While it’s not technically a room, I love the indoor/outdoor section of my home - almost a protected patio area, it’s a great space to relax and unwind, and feel more connected to nature and the plants around me. With extended lockdowns, it can be hard to feel you’ve actually ‘been’ somewhere different, but sometimes you don’t have to go very far at all. I’ve enjoyed some al fresco meals and a quiet space to just decompress and appreciate the small things, like a gentle breeze or local birds singing in the morning.

My favourite design object is an Alessi Marli bottle opener. It’s a simple one piece stainless steel figure 8 - I find it reminds me of both the infinity symbol and a mobius strip. My inspiration in design is always finding the simplest items (one piece) that will remain timeless and durable. It’s the challenge I find most impressive and energising. I get so much pleasure from reducing the complexity of a design and removing an element and this is a piece I've always admired.

My favourite drink at the moment is a cocktail. I take two ounces of Frangelico, a healthy squeeze of fresh lime juice, and lemonade and throw it all in an old fashioned glass. It's delicious, refreshing and light enough not to dull the senses when inspiration strikes!

IMAGES [Top to bottom] > All images courtesy of the artist. Recipe image source: unsplash.

+ Visit Thomas Halliday's Instagram account + Visit Thomas Halliday's Website

Designers on your doorstep

+ View the full list of works