chit chat

Hello everyone! I’ve been rather quite on here lately (well my work page!)
I’ve had a very busy start to a what’s looking like a very lucky 2013!
I’m just back from Birmingham where I was so lucky to be apart of New Design Britan Awards at Interiors UK. Very exciting!

Before that I was at a placement with Hallmark Cards in Bradford which was amazing. Very much like Disney land but for designers! I produced work that was so different from what was produced in my final year which surprised me and obviously impressed the Hallmarks team as I’ve been offered a freelance position!
So that’s 3 jobs in 3 different cities. Hogging much?!
Being at Interiors UK finally gave me the kick up the behind to get things going again with my work. So I will be selling my floral photography very soon. In time for valentines day! Buy your loved ones some flowers that will last longer than a few weeks!

Watch this space!


I know a few people who will be glad that i’ve finally had the time to sit down and write this. So so much has been happening that it’s taken me this long to grab the chance to write this up.

Firstly, i’ve been incredibly lucky. So so so very lucky with everything that has happened since i’ve left university. I honestly cannot believe my luck.

The last few months have been a whirlwind, with an increase in hours at my job in Lush resulting in shop keys and more responsibility which is great. And the hours increase will be great for my bank balance!
I have recently just come back to Dundee from a 2 month stay in Glasgow, living with my sister and doing two internships. The first at Timorous Beasties and the second at Bespoke Atelier.

I came home from New Designers and knew i needed experience if i wanted to get anywhere within the industry. I aimed high and wrote to Timorous Beasties asking if they had any places. Not expecting to be travelling to Glasgow two weeks later! It was by sheer chance that i got this placement so quickly, as i’ve spoken to other interns who have had to wait months in advance they are that flooded with requests.
It was such a wonderful experience, and my first week was the week before Design Week in London and new designs were being printed up to take down so i got to see both Ali and Paul printing and see the finished work. As you’d expect i was star struck. They are very much my Chanel of the interiors world. The work was exciting, dealing with huge amounts of sample requests and sending them out to customers and stockists. Which meant i got to see their huge range of designs up close and not just from a computer screen!
There was also drying of prints that the printers, Gavin and John had done to make it quicker for them to do the repeat process, again being up close to these designs and getting to see the full process of the way they print was very interesting and exciting.
In my last week i started helping Paul with the digital side of the companies designs. Feeling right at home at the computer! Fixing up little blemishes on new designs and helping to make new images from work created.
I was there for a month in total and it was such a great experience, but i was then straight off to work with Bespoke Atelier!

Bespoke Atelier is textile printing duo Marion Parola and Yvonne Elliott. This placement was very different to Timorous Beasties, as that it was very hands on and being very much apart of the “printing team” which was great, but so nerve-racking in the sense that if i messed anything up, id be messing up someone else work! Thankfully that didnt happen!
I would mix up pigment colours from their mood boards for their new collection and test them out by printing them and then deciding if the colours needed changed and what colours to add to make them right. I really enjoyed this as i had never done pigment mixing before at university (we used acid and reactive dyes and were never really told about pigment inks) so it was a new skill to add to the list!
I also did a bit of computer work for designs to be exposed on to screens and typed up a newsletter with help from marion and yvonne which was rather exciting!

But the placements had to end at some point, as my bank balance was running low and i needed to get back to work!

However, my trips to Glasgow are not at an end! While at Bespoke Atelier, i received a phone call from Dana at Timorous Beasties and all i could think was ” oh no, what have i done!” thinking id corrupted and important file or something! Thankfully Dana reassured me that everything was ok and that they wanted to bring me back in every Friday to help with some of the work load. Safe to say, i was and very much still am ecstatic about this. Proud as a peacock! I still can’t believe my luck and that i get to be involved with the work at the Timorous Beasties studio!

Some more news would be that i have been shortlisted to display my work at Interiors Uk next January at NEC with New Design Britain!

More about that soon. I promise!



My goodness, how time is flying. Before we know it i’ll be having my mid life crisis.

The past month has been a huge wizz and filled to the brim with exciting news.

Firstly, i have landed myself a lovely freelance job with Acorn Conceptual Textiles down in the gorgeous city of Nottingham.
I’m working from home to get 10 designs done for the end of this month just now so they can be looked at and possibly sent off with the company to Premier Vision/Indigo in Paris in September…very, very exciting! And that’s only the one of many trade shows that this company goes to!
I’ve been incredibly lucky with getting this freelance job as the director of the company actually couldn’t make it to New Designers this year, but one of her other freelancers saw my work and gave her my business card! The luck of that!
I’m pushing my floral work further as the director really liked what i was doing with them. And when i get a good scanner (as the one i currently have is awful and slowly dying on me) i’m going to push my cyanotypes further into digital designs.

So that’s one! The next is that i’m almost finished getting my work printed off and ready to send down to enter into Design New Britain Awards that will be judged at the end of the year.
Another is waiting to hear back from Sketch, as i was shortlisted for Creative Innovation Award 2012. Their judging takes place next month so everything crossed for that!

The job hunting, well more internships and graduate job positions hunting continues. Lucky to have things that are keeping me busy so i really can’t complain too much. Though maybe about the increase in train fares, but that’s another blog!

Here’s a design i’m not going to submit to acorn as i do have stronger, so i can safely post it here for you all to see. Just something a little different from what i’ve done for my final year project.

In the next few days my work is going to be put up in Duncan Of Jordanstone’s Degree Show and on Wednesday i have  to present my work to my tutors and examiners. Scary stuff, considering i hate standing up and talking in a serious note. Luckily I’m second in line to be seen so it will be over and done with in a flash. 

Then i can relax for a week until i receive my marks back. It will be like waiting to hear back from DOJ to see if i got in or not all over again!

I love what I’ve produced and very pleased and proud of it. That’s not something you’ll hear very often from me. Always critical of my own work. But most artist are, and should be. Otherwise we wouldn’t get anywhere.

There will be a huge relief after Wednesday, as I’d like to say id be able to jump on my new knitting machine that i received for an early birthday present, or start scribbling away on a newly purchased graphics pad. But, I’m having to clean, clean, clean.

My room is a tip (as every creative persons room should be 😉 ) with 4 years worth of, um well junk would be the word to others, but materials to me. Papers, pencils, paints, pastels, pigments and yeah, you get the gist.

Also cleaning the house from top to bottom, as with every year for the past 5, we are having a small gathering of people to celebrate the degree show and my birthday. And this year it’s my degree show 🙂

I’m glad i’m itching to get a start on a new project, as it terrifies me to think of not having that drive to design.

I’ll just have to buy out the college material shop of their sketch books before i leave first…

I’ve just had a very frank conversation with my mum, dad and significantly more intelligent sister about where my life seems to be heading, now the deadline is looming.

I said, quite simply, “I don’t care what mark i get. It’s not about the mark.”

An intake of breath i heard there as you read that line.

Now don’t get me wrong, I love what I’m doing. I really, really, love it. But i’d rather that showed through my designs, now and in the future, than what’s on a piece of paper.

I’d love a First. Hell, who wouldn’t?! But I’m realistic with a dash of pessimistic thrown in there. I know i have and will continue to try my hardest with my degree. So on effort, a first, yes? But who’s to say that i haven’t worked my hardest? And should that one mark reflect on the rest of my life and my work? I’m sure it doesn’t, but it means an incredible amount to the people out their who are about to graduate in the next few months.

I genuinely believe that in art and design, and something like textiles ( as i can’t well go blabbing my mouth off about this and say it applies to everyone if I’ve not tried all the subjects.) the mark doesn’t matter all that much. ( Please, tell me if I’m being too cocky and getting 5 sizes too big in my boots. ) It’s about what you are producing, and hopefully your passion, for what you are doing.  Id hope that future employees are going to look at my work rather than my mark.

Education is always about learning, but with me, studying textiles at duncan of jordanstone is a stepping stone to learning. Yes, OK, I am learning, and learning so much; I’m gaining all the skills i need as a printer in interiors right now, building up a portfolio and being shown some of the way on how to be a designer.
But it’s a bit like driving a car, we never really learn until we are out there, experiencing it all. Right?

Right. So who wants to give me an internship…?Anyone? Anyone?…

Like i say, i’ll never truly learn what it’s like to be an interior designer in the “real world” until i get my first internship.

Ah so I have been, again, rather neglectful of my little blog over here on wordpress. It’s a shame cause I do rather like writing. Anyway I digress, what spurred me back into the world of blogging was a lecture I was very lucky to attend this morning.

The third year’s have been so incredibly fortunate to have been given the chance to take part in a new design and marketing module. One that sadly the year I’m in didn’t get last year. Typical!
But I have been lucky enough to have been able to attend the lecture today and, well, lets just say, it’s one of the few times I’ve been to a lecture and only written notes. No doodling what so ever.

Mike Press took the lecture, and I’ve been lucky enough to see him speak on one or two occasions more.
Would it be odd to compare him to a striptease? No one seemed to stop from watching him or lose concentration. A friend of mine also said after the lecture that it was funny to watch, as whenever there was something to write down, everyone would be heads down and noting down what needed to be remembered.
This man knows how to lecture. And it’s great being taught in a lecture where you come out thinking “oh yes, I’ve got to blog about that!” instead of “ Right, back to bed.”

Had you asked me last week, or even as recent as yesterday, how I was feeling about graduating and leaving the comfort of the University, I would have either, a) vomited all over your shoes, or b) stood their and cried. I had absolutely no idea what was in store for me, and I still don’t. But what scared me the most was that I had it in my head that “If I don’t get into an interiors company that’s it. That’s it. I’m buggered.” It quite literally would have been “The be all and end all.”

Press asked us all to write down 6 jobs we could do after we left university. I sat there, as I knew the answer for me already. Anything. I can be anything I want. Ok so I’ll have to take another course to be my “dream job” of a marine biologist, but I could still do it. Or to be more textile specific, work with marine biologists to create a new fabric. A bit like Speedos “Fastskin” created by Fiona Fairhurst (A material that mimics the likes of shark’s skin.)
Mike Press made me realise that, as cheesy as it sounds, the world really is our oyster (in keeping with the marine theme).

I walked away from that lecture feeling a lot, and I mean a lot, less scared of the future. Excited about all the things that are going to happen, hopefully involving design, in my life.  If not, well I hear the Russians are looking for cosmonauts…

So next time you see me, ask me how I’m feeling about the future. Hey, you won’t need to wash your shoes this time.

prada menswear s/s 2012

An ever bold step for Prada again, taking on the bright and clashy “flower power” print in menswear for spring/summer 2012. I know a few men are thinking “the world is ending in 2012, it’s ok.” with a wipe of their brow.
Though i do love their take on a colour popping brogue.

And if I’m honest, men shouldn’t be afraid of colour. Take note of Brad Goreski
in this gorgeous orange suit by Jil Sander. He stands out from the crowd in their “stylish black”, and he looks great.