An exciting new product from Ola has landed at Of Cabbages and Kings. These are Organic Cotton Wraps are inspired by the ancient Japanese art of Furoshiki, a traditional Japanese wrapping cloth used to transport clothes, gifts, or other goods. They make a perfect reusable alternative to paper when wrapping a gift.
Not only are these organic cotton wraps long-lasting making an ideal alternative to throw-away, single-use wrapping paper, as they are tied there is no need for plastic tape and unnecessary plastic waste. The wrap can also become part of the gift, perhaps taking on another life as a pocket square, hair scarf or table napkin. Each wrap measures 500mm x 500mm and is decorated with one of Ola’s unique patterns. The range includes four designs: Turquoise Shapes, Forest Green Lines, Salmon Blocks and Indigo Shapes.
The wraps are made in collaboration with Re-wrap, a social enterprise in India whose aim is to create sustainable livelihoods for rural women. With a philosophy of Re-cycle, Re-claim and Re-invent, they create hand-crafted textile products designed to have a positive impact on people and the environment. Rewrap are part of the World Fair Trade Organisation. Their goods are shipped by sea to minimise impact on the environment and they use Global Organic Textile Standard approved cotton. Organic cotton uses organic farming methods whereby farmers become more climate resilient, reduce carbon emissions and create healthier soil, and healthier people.
If you are unsure on how to tie your cotton wrap, don’t worry, included with each cotton wrap is an instructional gift tag, allowing you to write your recipients name and who it’s from. The tag is removable and can be repositioned wherever you like.
How long has the Georgia Bosson Studio been running?
I started the studio in 2013 after being offered a place to trade at Crafty Fox Market with my first batch of products, mostly cushions and a rainbow of hand screen printed tea towels. Since then I have taken on a huge variety of projects from developing my own line of products, to designing an outdoor canopy for a gallery and everything else in between! I am currently working on some new ideas after a trip to Mexico last October and I have just a launched a website for Makers House, a show that I curate and which I have big plans for in the coming months!
How did you become interested in pattern and screen printing?
I first screen printed whilst studying for my A-levels and always returned to it as a means of laying down colour and texture over a large surface before adding more intricate details during my Embroidery degree. I love the immediacy of the process and I really enjoy that there is a certain level of restriction within the design process especially when I am working through ideas with paper stencils.
You seem to be keen on the hands on process of making, how does that affect your practice?
More often than not I design through making, I’ll usually have a series of drawings in my sketchbook that I then convert into hand cut paper stencils to be screen printed. I then continue to develop these ideas often bouncing around between a variety of imagery and generating lots of samples before settling on a few key ideas that are really working. This allows me to be less constrained and enables happy accidents such as inadvertently overlapped colours to occur, which often end up in final designs! My screen printed work always feels like it has more energy than the digital work and I love the idea that almost everything I make is unique in some way.
We have recently started stocking your trays and notebooks, where did the inspiration come from for the design and patterns on those?
The notebooks were inspired by the remnants from industrially die cut felt that I have been working with since starting my business. It is a weird and wonderful material that is the waste product from when felt washers are cut out, the aim was to capture the shapes created when the patterns are overlaid. All of the books were riso printed and bound in London and are a limited edition of fifty. The tray pattern designs came from a series of drawings exploring the textures and patterns on a typical British beach, and the trays themselves were inspired by the sea defences in the sea side town where I have spent every summer since I was one!
You have an interesting colour palette that runs through your work, are there certain colours you are drawn to?
I love colour in any form, one of the best bits about screen printing is taking the time to mix colours, I have hundreds of scraps of fabric that are covered in colour swatches from past projects – they are one of the best archives of my process and I can never bear to throw them away. At the moment I am working on a new colour pallet based on a trip to Mexico, so currently there are lots of pinks and oranges on the print table spiked with soft teals and greens.
I am always drawn to an acid/mustard yellow and you can’t go wrong with a beautiful slate grey. When settling on the colours for a design I always think about the use of the final object and where it sits in the home, I felt I was able to be much bolder with my trays as they won’t necessarily be on display at all times and will usually have something on them!
We also stock your collaborative prints the ‘Landmark Locations’ series, a collaboration with Cecily Vessey. How did the idea for these come about?
Cecily was my mentor for my first market and since meeting we have worked on various pop up events and projects together including a live collaborative mural of the View from Peckham, which was done over a weekend at Crafty Fox Market. After the success of the Peckham mural and print we decided to look at expanding our collaboration and ended up working on twelve prints that we funded on Kickstarter. Whilst there are no plans for any more collaborative prints we are currently working towards a 100 mile bike ride together so I am sure some fresh ideas will crop up during the many training hours!
Your trays will be perfect for for serving drinks at summer parties! Whats your favourite cocktail?
In the summer an Aperol Spritz – very specifically served in a big glass preferably somewhere hot and sunny. And in the winter you can’t beat an Old Fashioned!
On July 6th 2017 we will be hosting the official launch of MESH Studio with Marcelina Amelia here at Of Cabbages and Kings in Stoke Newington. On the opening night there will be a special pop-up shop from 5:30-9pm and the exhibition will run from July 7th until the end of August. We spoke with Marcelina to find out a bit more about MESH and the idea behind the brand.
MESH is a multidisciplinary art brand and design studio founded by artist Marcelina Amelia: Meshing shit up!
Marcelina has taken her artwork beyond the confines of the canvass and has applied it to affordable art objects and wearable art as well as limited edition prints, books and other artworks in a range of different media. Rather than focusing on product design, Marcelina often combines her image making with found household objects to create a series of one-offs within a theme.The Mission Statement:
“Our aim is to embody the term ‘Renaissance girl’, and as the name suggests, we love mixing different techniques and forms, like screen-printing, fashion, painting, ceramics, publications, illustration, politics and activism, because art shouldn’t have any boundaries. We hope that this fluid and meshy structure of the brand, will allow us to collaborate more and make a lot of exciting work and happenings.
MESH’s first collection is titled The Unsatisfied Girls Club and is inspired by the recent movement of strong and powerful women who aren’t afraid to walk tall and proud, manifesting their thoughts, fighting for their rights at the Women’s Marches and other activist happenings all around the world.
The Unsatisfied Girls Club is a movement of women wanting and deserving more. Women uplifting each other, and rolling their eyes at the old outdated, stereotypical ways, not being ashamed of their ‘girliness’, standing for themselves and each other, because being a women isn’t a weakness. Research shows that many women are conforming to outdated stereotypes and acting ‘like an alpha male’ to succeed at work – including dressing like a man and hiding ‘girlie’ emotions.”
You can also read our interview with Marcelina on the blog from a few years ago when she had her last exhibition us.
We are excited to announce our next exhibition with Adam Bartlett aka Tigers of the Universe. You may have seen his prints in the shop over the few months, and we’ll be looking forward to see what comes next! Adam will be exhibiting some original paintings alongside limited edition giclée prints. The show opens with a private view on Thursday April 13th from 6:30pm, we hope you can join us.
Adam creates his paintings by building up many layers of painted patterns to create beautiful decorative artworks. We were able to grab Adam for a few questions to ask about his work and process.
What is your artistic weapon of choice? Pencil, pen, paintbrush, digital…. My weapon of choice is the trusty pencil, followed closely by the brush.
How long have you been painting for? When did you start out?. It feels like I have always been drawing and painting, although previously I was a digital illustrator for 8 years. It’s only been the in last 3 years that I’ve started painting again.
You often use a combination of media in your paintings, such as acrylic, spray paint, emulsion and even enamel. How do these combinations influence your final pieces? The various mediums are used in layers. Emulsion is the base and finally the enamel for fine details. It’s not a hard and fast process, but more something that i enjoy. Also the paints have their own strengths and combined have good contrast and character. I am often unsure of the paints influence regarding the final piece, but more often than not pleasantly surprised.
Many of your pieces have jungle animals and lush landscapes. Are they inspired by travel or imaginary locations? The animals and forests are pure fantasy. I long for a world covered in jungle and forests where the animals and birds can roam free. The natural world is so stunning and I want to capture this in my paintings.
You have also worked in fashion textiles and design, does this background influence your current work? More and more I feel the influence of textiles creeping back into the paintings, not only with introducing texture again, but thinking about fabric designs etc. It’s exciting to come full circle and bring these various experiences together again, but with a fresh perspective.
Do find you that you come back to certain motifs, themes and colours over pieces? Yes, I think its important to keep certain repetitive elements in your paintings. Sometimes I feel guilty about repeating things, as if I’m not pushing myself enough, in which case exploiting repetitiveness will suffice.
What is your favourite takeaway?
Mmm, fish n chips or shish kebab
I’m heading down to Glastonbury this weekend for Halloween. This autumn festival always used to be quite a big deal when I was growing up in Suffolk and I have fond and funny memories of nights out at Oaksmere and Thornham Magna, seeing John Cooper Clarke, being shouted at by one-toothed angry farmers screaming ‘Get off my land!’, and eagerly anticipating whether the witch on the zip wire would make her full flight. She never did!
It’s the first time in a while that I’ve had the chance to celebrate Halloween properly and I think I may have got a little carried away. My brother has just moved to the West Country to take on La Terre, a bar and cafe in Glastonbury town. This is their first big event, there’s a delta swamp blues band and the theme is Louisiana Voodoo.
So, maybe not your average housewarming gift, but here goes Voodoo! I’m going to make myself a custome and something for them to hang on the wall – Voodoo-style.
Wow! It’s amazing (and a little frightening) what you can get on the internet these days. I purchased myself a whole sheep skull. A tad grim, but after a couple of days in a bucket of bleach I felt comfortable it was truly dead, and a delicate little rabbit skull. I did also spot a taxidermy crocodile head going for a tenner! Then I took a walk around the park, gathered some sticks, fished some feathers out the duck pond and had a look through granny’s old embroidery stash. And a ha! I knew there was a reason I kept those horrid beads that looked a bit like bones for over 20 years!
We’ve had a couple of exhibitions at the shop recently that definitely influenced my choice of colours. Both Martha Copeland and Johnathan Reiner‘s female portraits exploring ceremonious dress and tribal skin markings tackle notions of beauty, worship and costume. I revisited those, sat down to a large dosage of True Detective and then set to task.
So after quite a lot of twisting, winding, braiding, weaving etc this was the result. The final touch being some of granny’s gold buttons that I attached to the sheep’s eye sockets. She’s currently in the shop window scaring away our potential customers! (The sheep skull – not my granny)
I thought the sheep’s skull might be a bit awkward to wear as a headdress so I decided to make something a little smaller out of the rabbit skull. My brothers always used to mock me for my ‘Jennifer Connelly in Labyrinth’ teenage tantrums. I’ve just got a bit closer to playing the part.
Our new exhibition opened today at the shop. Samples is a collection of stories about fabric, collected from people in Hackney and Newham, told through sound, text and images.
Samples aims to explore the textile objects we hold onto and reveal the stories and meaning they carry. Jessica put together a book, along with a sound montage and a series of images, which aims to bring these stories and communities together. Featured stories were collected from members of the community at workshops, which took place at local venues including; Hackney Museum, Rosetta Arts and The View Tube.
Samples was devised by Jessica Plant as part of an MA Arts and Design by Independent Project at the University of Brighton in 2012. Jessica has also made a series of designs inspired by the Samples project; these limited edition prints, postcards and textile images will be available to purchase throughout the exhibition. The exhibition continues until Sunday 3rd November 2013.
Over the weekend we had some new jewellery designs by Alice Bosc arrive on our shelves. Alice’s geometric statement necklaces by designer Alice Bosc have taken from the patterns of Navajo folk art, so I thought I’d take a closer look at some Navajo Indian craft just to get a bit of background to the pieces.
The Navajo, the largest federally recognised tribe in The United States of America, are famed for their weaving. I stumbled across this short film of elderly Navajo Clara Sherman carding and spinning. She was one truly skilled lady!
It’s been a long time coming, but today we finally finished the counter. Hurray!!! A contemporary take on the good old granny square. We were aiming for a floating box effect and I think that’s what we’ve achieved. The colours are rather stone-like, however it’s incredibly soft to touch as it’s constructed from Ushya, which is a chunky merino wool. Also, as the wool is only temporarily fixed, we’re free to change the look as we wish.