Claire Norcross

Photography by Tim Ainsworth –

Yesterday we had a lecture taken by the amazing Claire Norcross, an award-winning designer who specialises in lighting. She talked about her time as an up-and-coming designer, how she started out, the materials she uses and her time working for Habitat. The talk was really interesting so we decided to blog about her work. She is best known for the range of lighting she produced whilst head of lighting at Habitat. These include Aperture, Spindle, Newton and Ribbon; which received the ‘Best in Lighting’ award from Elle Decoration magazine in 2006. Claire recently went back to her roots as a designer maker and was commissioned in 2009 to produce Bloom 296 for the Jerwood Contemporary Makers exhibition in London. She often works with industrial materials and found objects so there is also an eco aspect to much of her work.


She started off by talking about Eight-Fifty which is a light made from nylon cable ties, dyed to the required colour. The table lamp was launched at 100% Design in 1999 with Ferrious and received an award from Blueprint magazine. It continued to gain more critical acclaim and was included in permanent collections such as the Conran Collection at the Design Museum and the Made in Manchester Galleries at Manchester Art Galleries. The pendant version of the light was then mass-produced by Habitat and launched in 2001 and the design went on to win the Reader’s choice award for Design of the Year from Elle Decoration, 2002.

Limited Edition Eight-Fifty in Stainless Steel, 2001


Then she talked about Venus a light constructed from cable shrouds, this light was inspired by the interlocking form of the Venus Flytrap, 2002


Then she talked by Aperture, this sculptural paper shade was inspired by the nature of a pine cone and its ability to open and close according to the weather conditions. The user is able to open each aperture on the light to direct the light and create different effects as seen below. Designed for Habitat, 2003. The shade is produced in two different sizes, 58cm diameter and 32cm diameter

Ribbon Light

This critically acclaimed light was designed in 2004 for Habitat and won the Best in Lighting award from Elle Decoration in 2006. The light is available in different metals finishes and colours, also available as a smaller version.

Bloom 296

Bloom 296 was commissioned for the Jerwood Contemporary Makers exhibition in 2009. This sculptural light is made from 296 pieces of laser cut and hand pleated paper. It was designed to compliment the aesthetic of the energy saving bulbs, allowing them to become like the stemen of a flower. The light is currently on show in the Pavilion in Avenham Park, Preston.

For further information please visit:

Claire Norcross –

Habitat –