Thursday, 28 May 2009

Hanging Out at Tate Modern

Walking along the South Bank, I noticed this installation being assembled outside Tate Modern. Lace curtains were being hung on a cat's cradle of string amongst the silver birch trees, their leaves rustling as the lace fabric danced gently in the breeze. The sun shimmered through the lace creating patterns on the ground. There was something so lovely and natural about the whole thing. An enchanted forest.

I was reminded of this installation when I read an article called 'Hang it out' in Selvedge magazine. The magazine has started a campaign to encourage people to be kinder to the environment by boycotting their tumble dryers this summer.

Photograph from Selvedge magazine

I know. I know. It's easier said than done during a British summer. And, it's not that easy for city dwellers with small or no outside space. Maybe we could all do our bit for the environment this summer, by hanging out at least one or two pieces of washing. Be inspired by the Tate Modern. Create your own washing-line installations.

Saturday, 23 May 2009

Honolulu Style

Summer is here!! Today's glorious sunshine calls for bright colours and exotic prints. I've pulled out this retro 1960's dress from Hawaii.

The dress has a loose A-Line shape but I've decided to wear it with an 80's white belt (the accessory colour and decade of inspiration for SS09). What attracted me to this belt is the chunky gold buckle. It gives this kitsch dress a little bit of hard edged glamour.

Friday, 22 May 2009

Basso & Brooke at The Design Museum

I love Bruno Basso and Christopher Brooke's work. Their SS09 catwalk collection was so inspiring in their use of colour and print together with it's softly structured silhouette. It's not surprising to me that they have been nominated in this year's Brit Insurance Design Awards being shown at the Design Museum.

The below images, from the exhibition, capture their talent. This dress is so beautiful. So technically clever. So inspirational. I love it!

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Made in Clerkenwell at Craft Central

My first post and I have a confession to make: I didn't actually go to 'Made in Clerkenwell' today. I visited Craft Central last Friday...almost a week ago. Does that matter? The designs and crafts that I saw there will continue to inspire me for some time, so I think it counts as an inspiration for today.

I'm an old romantic at heart (as opposed to the new romantic I was in the Eighties) and I like anything with a link to vintage. So it may seem odd that what caught my eye on Candice Wren's stand was a basic white T.Shirt. Candice had printed it with an etched floral and butterfly design, and a hand-written note. The note was an original love letter that Candice had found in a flea market. How romantic. How inspirational.

Helen Beard creates ceramics, cards and framed watercolours. There's a lovely fluidity to her work. I especially liked the ceramics with watercolour illustrations of bathers. They really made me smile.

Swithbert and Louis are textile designers with a wonderful eye for mixing colour and textures. There scarves were almost too beautiful to wear. I'd use them as wall hangings.

Kate Jones designs intricate, luxury knitwear. I have to admit I've never been a knitwear wearer...I feel as if it turns me into my mother as soon as I put it on. Kate Jones's knitwear does not have that effect. This is modern, sexy knitwear. It made me want to pull out my knitting needles and cast on.

Janet Stahelin's studio had a calm serene air. Shelves were lined with her tall slender jugs and cylinder vases. 'Torn' bowls were arranged on another shelf. All the pieces are made from porcelain and inlaid with designs from antique lace. Simply beautiful.

Julie Vermeille uses ink drawings and collage to create whimsical illustrations based upon folk-tales. Her hand-made books were particularly enchanting.