It’s almost upon us: Liverpool Design Festival throws open its Scandinavian tongue-and-groove bleached wood doors tomorrow, and celebrates the region’s burgeoning creative community: with exhibitors jostling for your early Christmas spending cash.

But new this year is the chance to visit the studios of some of the city’s leading design lights: working in everything from web to gaming, branding to publishing, on Friday 7 October. Hey, we could probably do with a visit ourselves.

So, if you’ve ever wanted to peek behind the curtain of the shadowy world of Smiling Wolf, manhandle the mavericks at Mercy or mentally undress the creative director of Uniform, this is your moment.

Elsewhere during the festival there’ll be a Design Trail to follow across the city, offering opportunities to view exhibitions and installations of textiles in Crosby and Kirkby, and photography, furniture and fashion in a selection of city centre stores.

Partnering again with other Liverpool venues committed to contemporary design, the Design Trail will also highlight exhibits at the Bluecoat, the Tate and FACT.

The centre of attention, of course, is the festival’s main exhibition – at St George’s Hall – featuring over 100 independent designer-makers of furniture, fashion, lighting and ceramics, amongst many other tempting and delicious things.

Open Studios Information 
Liverpool Design Festival
6-9 October, St George’s Hall, Liverpool