The Commission for 2017

To design and manufacture a piece of free-standing furniture for a music room which will provide a focal point and practical storage for sheet music and music accessories. It may be made from any material or combination of materials, and should be innovative in its design, techniques employed or its use of materials. The materials used should be durable and strong, and preferably sustainably sourced or recycled.

Traditionally, music has been stored flat in drawers which contained as much music as could be easily picked up in one hand. The drawer front could incorporate a drop-down hinge to provide easy access and minimise damage to the contents.

The music collection contains a mixture of individual sheets of music and books (large and small), some of which are very old and fragile. The music collection is still growing, and is catalogued alphabetically by genre.

Technical specification:

  • a minimum of 2.5 linear metres of sheet music storage
  • the maximum size of a piece of sheet music is 36cm x 28 cm (NB this is larger than a sheet of A4 paper)
  • music accessories include a metronome, strings, resin, mutes, and tuning forks.


The finalists will receive:

  • £100 to enable them to undertake additional work on their applications prior to interview with members of the Selection Panel
  • the opportunity of exhibiting their design ideas for the Award at the GX Gallery in London in August

The names of the finalists will be published in Furniture & Cabinetmaking magazine.

The winner will receive:

  • a commission to make their winning design
  • £2,000 towards their costs
  • bespoke business mentoring during the making of the commission
  • a commission to write an article about the project for publication in Furniture & Cabinetmaking magazine. The winner’s name will also be published in the magazine
  • the opportunity of exhibiting the completed commission at the GX Gallery in London in August

The winner will work closely with the client throughout the making process, and will be offered guidance in practical business skills and effective communication.