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Creative Direction for Fashion student visits newly opened G.F Smith Show Space

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Written by
Josh De Souza Crook
Published date
17 April 2017

Papermakers G. F Smith recently opened Show Space in central London, a multipurpose venue that will showcase the company’s products and history. Owen Davies, BA (Hons) Creative Direction for Fashion, was one of the first people to visit the new space and documented it for LCF News during an interesting transitional period for print based mediums.

To those concerned with print by Owen Davies

I was recently visited the new G.F Smith Show Space on Eastcastle Street, around the corner from LCF.  The central London space houses a plethora of exhibits including a collaboration with Mulberry, showcasing the bespoke colour Mulberry Green that G.F Smith created and the G.F Smith Paper Making Process. The exhibits give an insight into how their paper is made and why it is different to others.

G.F Smith, the paper merchant founded in 1885 by George Frederick Smith, has played a crucial role in the creative industry and academia, providing unique offerings and an unrivaled service to both industry professionals and students. G.F Smith continues to inspire with the beautiful direction of their communication and the innovative approach they employ towards their products.

The intention of the visit was to introduce LCF students to the G.F Smith services and convey G.F Smith’s focus on paper & palette.

At the Show Space, I met Paul Scharf, G.F Smith Specification Sales Manager, who has been at the company since 1986. Paul informed me that G.F Smith saw the opportunity early on to target the graphic design market as well as students in the arts.

Paul showed me to the window display installation titled, Turbulence, a truly stunning entry point into the G.F Smith Show Space, taking inspiration from the colour palette of G.F Smith papers as well as the subject of air. Open to interpretation, the piece is reminiscent of the fragility of paper when it comes to the elements.


The clientele of G.F Smith speaks volume. Global brands such as Mulberry, Apple, It’s Nice That, Monotype, etc. all entrust G.F Smith. So much so, that Johnny Coca, Creative Director at Mulberry, postponed the re-launch of their packaging by two months in order to accommodate for the slight delay G.F Smith experienced in completing the Show Space. Mulberry Green has now been applied to all of Mulberry’s packaging and stationery which can be seen inside the Show Space. Mulberry also produced a book for the exhibit using another one of G.F Smith’s many services called Make Book, a service which allows anyone to create a bespoke book using G.F Smith papers. The book features the many techniques and finishes G.F Smith offers. The Mulberry Green exhibit also presents a detailed insight into the construction of one of Mulberry’s iconic bags, allowing the viewer to understand the importance of craftsmanship, a fundamental characteristic both Mulberry and G.F Smith share.

The brand collaboration exhibit will change every three months to celebrate the works and relationships of another one of G.F Smith’s devoted clients.

The Show Space is a great opportunity for students to experience pioneering techniques and materials outside of our central London site. G.F Smith is always happy to welcome students to the space if appointments are made in advance.