Article written on 21st April, 2016
Featured in Fabric
I have recently come across some wonderful, brightly-coloured, bold-patterned fabrics, inspired by hot, far away places and I just have to share them. My instinct is “oh what a shame I live where the skies are grey most of the time and I can’t use these fabrics in any of my schemes, otherwise the scheme runs the risk of looking like a municipal playground”, but immediately checked myself. “Down with doom and gloom, I am going to specify these where possible, irrespective of the climate, and just enjoy them”.
And here they are…..
Taking influence from the natural world of South Africa, Halsted have come up with these playful, graphic but subtle designs in beautiful colour ways. A little goes a long way and a lot goes a really, really long way….meaning, go for it, be bold! I love these crocs.
Laura Hamilton has re-kindled the 60’s and 70’s fabrics of Jamaica, her childhood home. She re-draws the designs from scraps of the originals, destroyed by a factory fire in the 1980’s.
Their bold simplicity is achieved through the screen printing technique and a relatively reduced palette of colours. All designs are printed on 100% linen. OOOOooohhhh to be in Jamaica.
Provenance and narrative are key elements to my discoveries. Not only is each piece a work of art, it is functional and practical…
So says Paula Goodman founder of Porcupine Rocks, the go-to showroom in London for unique items and fabrics from Southern Africa. She represents a number of fabric designers who are inspired by the African textile tradition, but who give it a modern twist. Below for example, is an witty take on the traditional Toile de Jouy.
There is a strong heritage in Africa of using textiles to tell a narrative and celebrate important events by creating political and religious commemorative cloths. Inspired by this, Shine Shine fabrics are a fun, contemporary and more urban take on these traditional fabrics.
I love a bit of national pride, so whatever the weather, go and get yourself some of these playful and uplifting fabrics.
Or there’s always the Uxbridge Road.
In the words of Nelson Mandela’s Xhosa-speaking tribe…
Hamba kakuhle (go well).