Dfs Design Foundation Competition…..

Design competition in association with GILES DEACON

Are you a final year design student looking to do an MA?
Enter your sofa design in our competition and you could have your MA tuition fees paid in full*. Plus, the winning design will be manufactured and professionally photographed at DFS’s production studio – and we’ll arrange a 3-month  internship with Giles Deacon. *In any design discipline up to a value of £12,000

DFS is one of the UK’s leading sofa specialists with more than 44 years’ experience of handcrafting furniture here in the UK. In recent years, DFS has embarked on a number of successful design collaborations and, most recently, launched a partnership with renowned fashion  designer Giles Deacon.

With strong shared credentials in British design and the ability to combine the worlds of fashion and home design, DFS and Giles Deacon are the perfect fit for a sofa collaboration.


Thinking about the concept of ‘contemporary urban living’ and all this entails, your challenge is to design a sofa that fits in with the theme of modern life. Think carefully about how you will create a stylish and functional sofa that will sit well in the smaller spaces that are often found in today’s homes.

As the sofa is the focal point of any living room, it should be design-led yet practical. Perfect for contemporary life, your sofa should have both comfort and style at its heart.


  • What trends are influencing furniture design and the wider world of interior design?
  • How will your design balance comfort, functionality and style?
  • Who is your target demographic?
  • How will you demonstrate differentiation from competitor offerings?

Don’t worry if you are unfamiliar with furniture creation – the competition will be judged on great ideas and entries that fulfil the ‘contemporary urban living’ brief. You are not required to design the internal frame of the sofa. If you win, we’ll help you with that element of the design.

Lipgloss sofa by Giles Deacon


Your creative response to the brief should take the form of a minimum of one mood board, plus sketches of your sofa and a series of fabric suggestions. In addition, please provide a one-page written explanation of your:

  • Thought process
  • Research
  • Design inspiration

Please provide your entry as a PDF document, with your name, college and contact details detailed clearly. Hard copies are also accepted.

  • Open to all final year BA students across any design course
  • All applications must be submitted by 31 March 2014
  • Enter via design.foundation@dfs.co.uk or by post to Krow Communications Limited, 80 Goswell Road, London EC1V 7DB
  • The DFS Design Foundation panel will then shortlist six applicants who will be invited to spend a day with Giles on 24 April, during which they’ll be able to refine their sofa design, receiving expert advice and support along the way.

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