An overarching research theme of my fellowship in Venice was the everyday life and living conditions of Venice’s residents. The crowds in Venice are to be expected, but it is the obstruction to simple tasks, which tourists cause, which surprised me. Walking to work or trying to carry heavy bags home from the supermarket was made particularly difficult by tourists sitting on bridges and walkways beside the canals.
My canal seating design aims to tackle this problem in a fun and appealing way whilst encouraging tourists to leave walkways clear. The seats, made from recycled car tyres, are designed to hang off canal edges creating comfortable seating that leaves footpaths clear. Each tyre has a coloured wooden seat echoing the designs of Venice’s many mooring poles. A rope hangs below each seat to act as a footrest and to allow the user to push oneself back up onto the bank when they wish to move on. The tyres are durable and also act as a buffer for boats when the water is high.
Metal, leather, wire
As a designer I am always conscious of the amount of waste that my industry creates. Whilst working in a ceramic jewellery studio, between September and December 2018, I gathered and saved the leather offcuts and faulty earring hooks which would otherwise have been thrown away. I have used these “dud” forms to create new, original sets of earrings that encourage us to question the way which our society consumes and where our idea of value comes from.
Here the earrings are modelled by myself and Helena Megson who was also the stylist on this shoot. Shot by Sonny Barthley.
The company Little Inventors, set up by designer Dominic Wilcox, runs wonderful projects to encourage children to embrace their creativity and believe that their inventions are worthwhile.
I have been lucky enough to work with them at many of their workshops and events and am also listed as one of their ‘Magnificent Makers’. I have brought two children’s inventions to life over the past year.
The first is the ‘Pogo Pencil’ designed by Hali, age 8. I thought her idea was wonderful and had so much fun trying to work out how a pogo stick could be used to draw whilst bouncing.
My second make was the ‘Balloon Bike’ by Jessica, age 9. I so enjoyed bringing Jessica’s creative design to life and love the concept of encouraging children and young people to use lights when cycling at night, in such an original way.
I hope to continue working with Little Inventors in the future and you can find out more about their projects here:
The inspiration for this piece came from a book with curled dog-eared corners. I loved the form that the corners held and began thinking about how this could be translated in a stronger material that could hold this shape permanently. The Dog - Eared shelf can be used in many contexts to hang items such as coats and bags on the curled hook whilst also holding smaller items on the flat shelf surface. It comes in a range of colours and finishes and can be made in any size. The images here are A5, A4, A3 and 210x500mm.
The Dog - Eared hook embraces the same technique of curling metal and has been made in 1.2mm sheet steel. It is also available in any colour and is perfect in a variety of settings.
The Dog-Eared Shelf has been awarded 2nd Prize for the ‘Up in the Clouds’ brief set by Collaborate, Verco and Perkins and Will. It has also been featured in Mix Interiors Magazine:
These spoons were inspired by research into hand gestures and the feeling of different textures against the skin. I like the feeling of natural and organic objects and materials and I feel like this is an unusual texture to find in a kitchen. These spoons each feel different in the hand and this effects how you use each one.
Behind Closed Doors
Kvadrat Felt, Bondaweb, 1.2mm Steel
This design for a laundry bag which expands when in use was aimed at renters with small living spaces. Laundry bags, in my opinion, take up unnecessary floor space, and so keeping this bag behind a door allows it to be unobtrusive and practical. The shape embraces a traditional paper bag structure but the front panel is pleated to allow it to expand outwards and gain a greater volume when filled.
The bag hooks onto a simple folded steel hook which slips over the top of the door. When the bag has been removed it can be carried to the nearest washing facilities with the cut out handles.
Ceramic Tiles, Brushes Various
These are experiments and development pieces from the brief 'Gift' set by the ceramics company 1882. The idea behind these products is to add value to objects we use everyday and yet care very little about. They are attempting to stand against the throwaway culture our society generally embraces.
Not Paper Bags
Linen Scrim, Wax Paper, Nickel, Leather, Magnets
This design was inspired by paper-bags and their folding mechanisms. The material is made from laminated wax paper and linen scrim to create a strong and waterproof material, which maintains a paper-like quality. The bag is designed to withstand several uses but when worn out, the owner can remove the straps and eyelets and recycle the inner compartment. They can then reattach their straps to a new bag.
Each of these buttons are formed by the natural motion of pouring melted pewter over a sanded cuttlefish shell. The metal picks up the grains and patterns of the shell whilst forming in an almost perfect circle. This emulates the way in which water droplets form on a surface and I like the way the metal almost represents the freezing in time of such a common occurrence.
The shape was inspired by the Italian Christmas story of La Befana who is an old woman believed to deliver presents to Italian children at Christmas every year. She is always depicted wearing a headscarf or shawl and this was the starting point for the shape’s design. By experimenting with a triangle of fabric and a variety of paper models, I came upon this shape. The creases in the pasta emphasise folds in material and each piece is crimped at the base to give the impression of a knot being tied under the chin as if each pasta piece is a miniature old ladies headscarf.
The brief of designing a new pasta shape was set by Carluccios and I had the honour of meeting Antonio Carluccio to discuss my design.
These envelopes can be used to send invitations through the post and then folded into a vase when received. They can then be filled with soil and ‘forget-me-not’ seeds (which are included with the invite) can be planted. When the flowers are fully grown, they act as a physical event reminder. This product aims to reignite our love affair with sending letters and makes receiving an event invitation more engaging.
Leaves and Various Adhesives
These forms were created during my time in Boisbuchet working with the designer Lex Pott. I used a variety of leaves and glues to create different forms that could be used as vessels. Some leaves were more effective than others and I experimented with colour and shape variety. I like that when the dishes are cut to a geometric shape the organic nature of the leaves is removed.
This is an ongoing project and I hope to develop 'Leaf Crockery' into something more permanent.
Models made from wire, balloons, tissue and tracing paper
A series of concept lamps attempting to use a bulb's heat to inflate balloons and other materials. The project stemmed from trying to create a lighting system that was expandable and consequently good for compact living.
The Space Pocket
Folded Stainless Steel and Kvadrat Fabric
This product was designed to create a more efficient working environment and is used to enclose a desk area. The design works on the concept that isolation is a mind-set as opposed to a physical state. The small barrier that the pockets create allows the user to switch off from everything around them, without needing a permanent structure to separate them from their colleagues.