What a funny little book about design! The pattern images are all the most basic examples of their kind. Not only that, but they're all printed in black and shades of grey, with a very few pastels thrown in.
Yet inside is enough to satisfy the curiosity and wandering mind of any surface pattern designer, on any venn diagram ever. There's history, sociology, cultural references, anthropology, mythology, poetry, mathematics...you name it! Name another pattern book that can tell you the real reason that some refer to the French as "frogs." (Hint: it's nothing to do with lunch!) Learn what "tribe" your choice of neckwear might be signaling. Or why, in 16th century Kashmir, the gift of an costly paisley shawl put you a rung down on the social ladder.
Throughout Patternalia, you'll find underlined text, rather like hyperlinks. You are encouraged to jump from topic to topic, as these "links" intrigue you. Small enough to reside on the corner of a desk or bedside table, Patternalia invites you to browse at will. Who knows how you might be inspired!
In another exciting first for the Surface Pattern Design Guild, we'll be broadcasting tonight's meeting live. Our members from around the world will be able to join us via the Periscope app. To find out more about how to connect, step over the forums.
We're pleased to announce our next guest, Burt Kallandar of Bradbury & Bradbury Art Wallpapers. At our next meeting Mr. Kallander will speak about the history of wallpaper and where it's going now. He'll also speak of the challenges of owning a small design-centric business, and the struggles and solutions that arise along the way. And of course there will be wallpaper samples to admire!
Since their founding in 1979, Bradbury and Bradbury have become THE purveyor of the sort of elaborate "room sets" you might find in a loving restored San Francisco Painted Lady. You may be surprised then to know that Bradbury & Bradbury's line has now extended to include papers suitable for early to mid 20th century eras, from Art Deco, Atomic Age, and The Mod Generation! They've recently added a Japanese inspired collection too.
At the Fashion and Textile Museum in London is a surface pattern designers dream! The exhibit explores Liberty’s impact on British fashion, from Orientalism and Aesthetic dress in the 19th century, through Art Nouveau and Art Deco in the early 20th century, and the revival of these styles since the 1950s.
Liberty, the iconic London department store, is celebrating it's 140th anniversary this year. Over 150 garments, textiles and objects demonstrate Liberty’s strong relationships with designers since 1875, from Arthur Silver of Silver Studio to collaborations with Jean Muir, Cacharel, Yves Saint Laurent and Vivienne Westwood.
Surface pattern designer and blogger Modflowers has a lovely write up of her private viewing experience of the exhibit with no less a personage than Sarah Campbell! (Look for our upcoming book review of The Collier Campbell Archive) There are several up close photos of exhibits showing initial artists' sketches, alongside the finished designs on clothing. Talk about your ultimate Sketch Chronicle!
Is it too much to hope for an airplane ticket to London in our Christmas stocking?
During this time period computers were not used in the design process. It was all drawing, blowing up the image to life size and laying motifs out. Birtwell’s process specifically was to draw a face, then the garment below, only then would she begin to design the fabric. “Most textile designers don’t think about where the print will end up, how it will work in three dimensions, but Celia always does,” says Linda Watson.
After 10 years in the fast paced fashion world Birtwell’s partnership with Ossie Clark ended in divorce. With 2 sons to raise Birtwell was looking for a change and found the slow process of designing interior textiles fit her perfectly. Celia Birtwell is still going strong, check out her website to see what she is up to now. http://www.celiabirtwell.com/
Enid Marx: Design
By Ruth Artmonsky and Brian Webb
Antique Collectors’ Club, 2013
Marx was a leader in engraving and drawing. She produced designs for textiles, pattern papers, end paper, book jackets, stamps, posters, labels, cups and saucers, and more. She wrote and illustrated books for adults and children, and authored articles, and was an avid collector of folk art. Her work was featured in exhibitions, and she took part in the design of textiles for the London subways and buses in the 1930’s-40’s, which were in use for decades, and created designs for the 1940’s
wartime Utility Furniture scheme to produce affordable furniture. Her designs were popular and had a singular, unique style. Her aesthetic is beautiful and fascinating—I love her abstract designs—and I found myself going through the color plates several times. The book is a wonderful read, outlining Marx’s journey from her student days to being an industry leader. She is inspiring as a designer and as a woman navigating business in a world of men at the time. If you love history and want to discover her work (or rediscover if you’ve seen her work before) this is a great addition to your library.
Covering walls and upholstered furniture with bold geometrics, beautiful birds, and flamboyant florals, her work has stood the test of time. Florence Broadhurst’s designs are again in the public eye, this time licensed by Kate Spade, who has applied them to everything from shoes, tableware, playing cards and Vespa scooters. It goes to show that classic designs can make anything more beautiful.
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pattern design related news, information, or tips to share? We want to hear from you!