[London Design Festival encounters]: Imprint at Craft Central

BLOG_STRIP_Imprint-Exb_WEB-3Last Tuesday, we went along to the private viewing of the Imprint Exhibition (as part of the London Design Festival and the Clerkenwell Design Quarter) held at Craft Central in Clerkenwell – our first LDF13 event of the week –  that showcased the works of a broad range of designers who use various methods of printing or mark-making to their designs. With glasses of fizz in hand we meandered through the many displays of ‘printed design’ that ranged from screen prints and letterpress to digital and 3D printing, ceramics to furniture and many many more. It was a wonderful evening, buzzing with creativity and excitement, that we left feeling so inspired ourselves! And how cool are the screen-printed posters for the exhibition by Turnbull Grey?! I just LOVE the flourescent orange exclamation mark against the somber grey background colour – very slick indeed!

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And here are some of the designers that caught our eye that night.

BLOG_STRIP_Imprint-Exb_WEB-1 1. Marby & Elm  |  2. Bronagh Kennedy  |  3. Esther Coombs   |   4. Kate Sutton  |  5. Katie Brown  |  6. -7. Regina Heinz

BLOG_STRIP_Imprint-Exb_WEB-6BLOG_STRIP_Imprint-Exb_WEB-2 8. Karen Lowes   |  9. Laura Slater  |  10. -11. Kethi Copeland  |  12. Annabel Williams  | 13. Katherina Manolessou  | 14.  Fanny Shorter

BLOG_STRIP_Imprint-Exb_WEB-7 BLOG_STRIP_Imprint-Exb_WEB-8 BLOG_STRIP_Imprint-Exb_WEB-9 [Image credit: Made by Molu]

[What’s On] I’m a Piece Showcase, London

invite-stc-25th-april-2013Last Thursday, was the ‘I’m A Piece’ showcase in London which took place at Craft Central in Clerkenwell. Well, I was delighted when I first heard that it was coming to London seeing as I had missed the big installation launch in Manchester last month. I was even more delighted when I knew I had nothing scheduled in my diary for that evening meaning I could actually attend this event! :) So I popped along, after work and came face to face to all those amazing and painstakingly hand-sewn jigsaw pieces created by hundreds of crafters across the nation (and beyond, I’ve heard!). Seeing the installation in real was such a remarkable experience!! And I must admit there was a teeny-weeny sense of pride too when I spotted mine amongst all those jigsaw pieces! ;) I am so glad to be a part of this wonderful campaign and was even more chuffed to hear from Save The Children representatives that night how well it did to grab the attention of many local MPs :) So lets hope it makes some difference in time for the G8! As Margaret Mead, the American cultural anthropologist, rightly quoted, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”

Anyway, here’s a few shots I captured via my iPhone that evening! (© Made by Molu) xxx

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(PS. can’t believe this is my 100th post already!!!)

[Workshop Shenanigans]: Japanese Gocco Printing

So we went along to our first craft class at Craft Central last week eagerly looking forward to trying out this method of screen printing which I’ve heard so much about. I had been feeling really under the weather for the last few days but I was determined to soldier on and not miss out on this! Anyway, just a quick recap of what Japanese Gocco printing is about – it’s an art that is slowing dying out due to the discontinuation of the compact Riso Gocco printing kit back in 2005. These were introduced back in the 70s and almost most households in Japan owned one of these for the convenience it brought. So since being an almost extinct art folk are now jumping at the chance of either obtaining the machines for themselves or signing up to workshops…..like ourselves!

The Class was run by Xtina Lamb of Printed Wonders who’s work includes a lot of Gocco Printing. Five minutes into the lesson we learnt, much to my disappointment (and boy was I disappointed because I had created a few artwork) that this course didn’t actually include the creation of our own screens from our personalised art work…..i.e. actually using the compact machine and the light bulbs to transfer our artwork to the mesh screens due to the misprint in the course details!  That was what I had been waiting for since signing up! Ah well…we were, nevertheless, given a large choice of Xtina’s own fabulous screens that she had designed and got straight into printing. We had an abundance of materials, cards and notebooks to get us in the spirit and so the production line process began!   I am SOOOOOO tempted to get myself one of these machines as it really seems ridiculously convenient and fast to use and I’m hoping that one day these Riso Gocco Printing machines will be relaunched seeing as there’s a recent rebirth of this art!

Here’s a nosey at what we were up to. More photos of the final products; the bunting, wall art and cards that were made will be posted later but hope you like what you see so far and let me know what your thoughts on this style of screen printing!

BLOG_STRIP gocco printing low res

Weekend Encounters: ‘Made in Clerkenwell’

Last Friday we popped along to Craft Central to check out their biannual design show ‘Made in Clerkenwell’ where designers and makers showcased a lot of their bespoke and beautifully crafted designs….just in time for the Christmas shopping spree! Here’s a brief review on what we saw and the designers that caught our attention.

Designers that caught our attention:

Tobyboo is a textiles illustrator known for her ‘thread drawn illustrations’ that has been seen on many homeware products such as cushion covers, tea towels, ceramic teaware, children’s toys, and even cellotape! Her fabulous and unique products, namely her signature range called ‘Oranges & Lemons’, which I learnt from Tina (the lovely designer-maker behind all this fabulous stuff) are stocked at the Museum of London, Mary Portas shop in House of Frasers, Somerset House and online stores Not-on-the-HighStreet including her Etsy store. Im still stewing over what to buy from her – whether its the fabric figurines or her teaware. Anyway….do check her stuff out by which can be done by following her blog or her facebook page!

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Maxine Sutton is another textiles designer-maker who incorporates machine embroidery, screen printing, appliqué and needle-punch techniques into a variety of artwork and homeware products. She uses sustainable and ethical materials such as organic cotton and natural linen creating products that range from lampshades to cushion covers. I personally love the way she ties in gorgeous colours with abstract prints, perfect for a neutral backdrop! To find out more on her work visit her website or you can directly buy her products off her online shop.

Made In Clerkenwell 2012_4

Emily Sidwell‘s jewellery was not only fun and highly whimsical (inspired by what is quintessentially English, vintage and eccentric) but after talking to her for some time (and what a delightful person to talk to!) I soon realised the extent of workmanship that went behind these beautiful pieces where no two pieces are the same! Working from her studio at home, she moulds the wax that makes each individual piece, by hand (a method called lost wax casting process) which is then sent off to be cast in silver or brass. This is then polished up or tarnished further by hand to form the final products that are simply unique!  I had my eye on a beautiful Robin brooch which I now regret not buying so I will keep my eyes peeled for more of her lovely bespoke jewellery such as her Alice in Wonderland collection which can be also purchased off her online store.

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Selina Rose (image 1 below) is an award-winning designer that specialises in bespoke felt surfaces and homeware. I loved the vibrancy in the colours and the intricately cut patterns of her products. Her felt cushions from the ‘Flutterby’ range (seen below) have been extremely popular and understandably why as they are so beautifully cut where the folded butterfly wings to reveal a contrasting felt lining behind and create the most stunning three-dimensional cushions I’ve seen! You can purchase her products through her online shop,follow her on Facebook, or even contact her for bespoke commissioned work. PS. I must say how much I loved her packaging too which was so elegantly designed!

Kate Clarke London (image 2 below) designs some of the most cool and contemporary hand screenprinted homeware that is most definitely ‘fresh, bold, and colourful with a retro twist’. To buy any of her awesome products (which are reasonably priced!) visit her online shop here or follow her on Facebook.

Ane Christensen  (image 3 below) and her metal sculptures are definitely eye-catching. Her ‘crumbling’ silver bowls from her ‘Negative’ Series was my favourite which explores the concept of negative spaces cut out of a surface. If you would like to know where to find her products, here’s a list of London shops and galleries that stock her, or alternatively, you can just drop her a line!

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Hope this has given you a good but brief insight to some of the designer-makers we saw that night. Unfortunately there are FAR too many we liked to mention in this one post so I may just feature a couple of others in a separate post!  For more visual treats however, please visit Craft Central’s photo album on their Facebook page. Enjoy!! xx