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Once upon a time this was a must-see show, but the Ideal Home has been lacking lustre for a while now, and this year is no exception. This may reflect the growing competition from the internet's browsing and shopping experience, but the show seems to be getting smaller each year and visitor numbers declining.

It doesn't seem to be able to compete with Grand Designs Live or 100%Design for showcasing variety, innovation and trends in furniture and furnishing.

Nevertheless we spotted a few interesting exhibitors and feature some of them below.

One Deko were featuring their range of expandable furniture. We liked the idea of a coffee table that can be raised and expanded to form a dining table, two pieces of furniture in one! One DeKo

Expandable table
Majic J Coffee/Dining table

Expandable coffee table
Mascotte Coffee/Dining table
Dining table

Kitchen furniture makers Culshaw Bell were featuring their new kitchenette. It's a clever update on the butler's pantry, a design which goes back several centuries. The cupboard conceals a larder fridge, microwave, pots and pans. There is shelving for food and crockery, three dovetailed drawers and the granite worksurface has enough depth for kettles, coffee machines and toasters. It would make a great centrepiece in a free-standing kitchen. Culshaw Bell


Here's something for homeworking teenagers and students, the StudyBed converts from a desk to a bed in a few seconds without the need to remove any items off the desk or stow away any of the bedding. It's a well-made clever solution for smallish rooms that need to serve as both study and bedroom. StudyBed

Study Bed

Study Bed

Chinese manufacturing has really brought down the price of bathroom equipment without any compromise on stylish up-to-the-minute design. This p-shaped shower bath was exhibited by F.E.E.T International. The package retails at just £750 +VAT and includes the bath, shower screen, thermostatic shower mixer, body jets and massage jets. F.E.E.T International

Shower bath

Now here's something you didn't think you needed, but now it's being produced you might want to think again. If you're tired of boring halogen downlighters why not convert them into glamorous pendants? Design 55, the designer furniture and accessories company, are exhibiting the Snood adaptor that transforms downlighters into decorative light fittings with cascading glass beads. Design55

Snood Snood

If you are looking for chic retro style, take a look at Cola Red. They specialise in unique replicas of 50's American diner furniture available as separate chairs, stools and tables or as complete dininng sets. Cola Red

Cola Red dining set Cola Red dining set

Be the first to get rid of your dark granite worktop! Colour coated glass kitchen worktops are the latest fashion. Glass doesn't harbour germs and is non-porous and easy to clean. It comes in an amazing range of colour ways. It also has the advantage of being easily cut and shaped to your design. Contract Glass produce bespoke glass worktops under the GLASSACT brand. Contract Glass

Glass worktop glass worktop Glass worktop

If you would like to visit the EDF Energy Ideal Home Show, it runs from 20 March to 13 April 2009 at Earls Court, London. Ideal Home Show.

You can find dates for all UK home improvement and furnishing shows in the Homesources Forum Calendar.

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