Decor Fest Preparation


, , , ,

This week I have been busy preparing my stand and ordering products for the Decor Cafe show on 23rd March in Wimbledon.

Decorfest Poster

After this wet and grim winter, I am planning to make my stand look as fresh and spring like as possible.  I will be re visiting my Spring / Summer Meadow Collection.

Here is an initial idea for the back wall, simple and striking.

Stand Design Decorcafe YellowI will also be showing a foot stool entirely produced by the Woodworks in Bath.

I am really excited about this show and am enjoying planning the stand.  I really want to give people a good idea how they can freshen up a room, ready for spring.


A Day in the Studio – Colour Visualisations


, , , , , ,

Hotel Rebstock ExteriorJust before Christmas I spent a couple of days at the Hotel Hofgarten in Lucerne Its sister hotel Hotel Rebstock has some wonderful old wooden interiors which remind me of the old chalets my parents used to rent in the mountains when I was a child.  Here are a few images to give you an idea.Rebstock for WordPress 1Rebstock InteriorRebstock for WordPress 3Unfortunately, I could not get into all the rooms I wanted to photograph, because they were occupied by guests.  However to give you an idea of what I had in mind here are a few “before” and “after” images.


Rebstock for Visuals BeforeAfter:

Rebstock for Visuals afterBefore:

Rebstock Visuals Before 2After:

Rebstock Visuals After 2What do you think?

Another exciting development is that the Woodworks Film with introduction by Ken Loach is now finally live on you tube.  Here is the link:  Very moving stories of redemption.

News from the Studio


, , , , , , , , ,

It has been rather quiet on the blogging front, but there has been plenty of activity behind the scenes.

My Autumn Collection is complete, there are just a few adjustments to be made.  My first task will be to cover this wonderful restored and upholstered chair.

Restored and re-upholstered chair

I bought it from the Woodworks which is a successful furniture workshop project for the benefit of those with mental health issues, those recovering from a history of addiction to drugs or alcohol and for people who are recovering from a major life trauma, such as a road traffic accident or stroke.

Recently there has been great excitement at the workshop.  The reason for this was the making of a promotional film, professionally put together by students of Bath City College with an introduction by film maker Ken Loach.  It is hugely moving listening to people’s stories about their journey to recovery. Watch this space for a link to the film very soon.

It is a realy privilege to be involved with this project.  Each piece of furniture has a story to tell.  Here is an example of a dining chair covered with my “Giant Rose” fabric.

Giant Rose Chair

Finally, I am pleased to report that I have secured my first licensing contract for iPad, Kindles and iPhone cases with the American Company Solid Line Products.   I love the way these cases are printed and produced.  Akin to a hardback cover, they use traditional book binding techniques to make the Keka cases.  Using eco-friendly inks, they start by printing the designs onto the same type of vinyl used on race cars.  They then add a cast overlaminate to make the case resist water, stains and tears.  The vinyl is then take the vinyl and wrapped around recycled book boards.  Here is the link:

A truly unique and personal cover for your gadget.

A Day in the Studio 2

Autumn Mist, Trees and Quilt Design

This is the final repeat for my Autumn Collection.  I have combined a quilt design, Dalia, autumn colours and mist all into one design.  I cannot wait to see the fabric samples and have chairs covered with the new designs.  As always the chairs will be re-upholstered and up-cycled at the Woodworks in Bath.

I hope I shall have the time to play around with the designs and experiment a bit more. It has been really interesting to take sections of the designs and enlarge them, showing the painterly marks and textures.  Here are a few examples:

Autumn Design Section 1 for Blog

Autumn Section 3

Autumn Design Section 2 for Blog

A Day in the Studio


, , ,

Autumn Flower Design

This could be a painting but I have been working on putting this image into a half drop repeat.  What a fiddle and quite challenging!

I have been thinking quite a lot recently about the boundaries and challenges of where fine art meets design and vice versa.  This has lead me to explore the textiles and paintings of John Piper.  Here is a link to a particularly interesting design of his put into repeat: This is certainly an artist I will research more in future.

I woke up this morning thinking there must be another way of doing repeats.  This lead me to play around a bit with one of my other designs.  Not only did John Piper’s image influence me, but also the way quilts are put together.  As mentioned earlier, I am a great admirer of the quilts of Gees Bend.  Here is a link to the image google page  This poor African American community in Alabama, creates amazing powerful art quilts out of their old clothes and fabric remnants.

Here is one of my experiments.  Very rough and ready, but I think there are possiblilties for development.

Autumn Quilt Design

Mood Boards


, , , , ,

I would not consider starting to design a collection before constructing a few mood boards.  They are an invaluable resource while designing.

For my new Autumn Collection the key inspirations are:

  • Autumn fog combined with colourful autumn leaves
  • Warm wooden interiors with an open fire
  • The structure and stitching of the quilts of Gees Bend
  • The paintings of William Crozier, Wolf Kahn, Emil Nolde and Judith Cain

Mood board 1 for Blog

Moodboard 2 for blog

Mood Board 3 for Blog

Weekend in Pembrokeshire


, , , , , , ,

Last weekend, my designer friend Louise and I, booked a cosy cottage outside St. David’s for a well earnt break, away from family and work. It all seems like a dream now, our sunny 10 mile walk along the Pembrokeshire coast last Saturday, especially as the weather here in Bath has been grey and wet all week.  It was quite a treat, after our long hard winter. We were delighted with our accommodation as well, booked through the company

Here are a few photos to give you a flavour of our walk:

Wales Walk for Blog 1

Wales Walk for Blog 3

Wales Walk for Blog 2

Who could fail not be uplifted by such a walk.

Autumn Collection Drafts continued


, ,

It has been a frustrating day with a lot of interruptions.  I spent all morning on my Autumn Flower design, only for Photoshop to crash which meant loosing several hours of work. However, I had another go this afternoon and here is the result.  I wanted to add some Autumn florals to my collection and I think this is definitely a design worth refining and putting into repeat.

Autumn Florals

Autumn Florals

First Drafts of the New Autumn Collection


, , ,

It is a grey drizzly February day, so working on my new autumn collection with the glowing colours is quite a contrast.  I really cherish the days when I can work uninterrupted on my designs. I have been thinking of foggy autumn days with the autumn leaves appearing as a brilliant contrast. Inspiration has also been drawn from  Wolf Kahns pastels with their scratchy colourful marks and the quilts of Gees Bend.

Here are my first drafts of the New Collection.  They still need a bit of work and I need to put them into repeat.  I am quite excited about how I combined the composition of a quilt with my hand drawn designs.  The intention is to make the designs “painterly” and quite free.  I hope I am succeeding with this.

Autumn Design 2 for Twitter

Autumn Gees Bend

Autumn Design for Twitter - Blog

Preparations for Lucerne


, , , , ,

I am really pleased to have made use of my fabric scraps.  A friend of mine has   transformed them into these lovely bags and purses which will make good Christmas presents.  Each one is unique and has a matching silk lining.

All the preparations have been done now and I am leaving tomorrow for Switzerland. The Expat-Expo is on Sunday 11th November in the Transport Museum (Verkehrshaus) in Lucerne.

Here is a small taster of the items which can be used as make-up bags, pencil cases and purses.