Friday 30 October 2009

Riches from rags

I love this photo of Manon Gignoux's dolls.
For more soul-stirring, inspiring images and information about this French textile designer read Pia Jane Bijkerk's wonderful post here.

Photo via Zannestar

Let it grow

I came across this set of 3 plantable cards over at Simple Blueprint the other day and think it's a brilliant idea. Retro Whale's cards are embedded with wildflowers and made from recycled paper. Their packaging is also 100% biodegradable. What a wonderful gift to send to a child, a friend or a loved one. Not only will they have the pleasure of receiving a card but also of watching best wishes grow into beautiful wildflowers.

When I started looking into eco-smart cards I realised that there are all kinds of wonderful products available. Grace Graphics sell a huge selection of seeded plantable greetings cards and gift tags, for example:

These cards reminded me of the work of a social enterprise in England called The Secret Seed Society. Sophie, one of my French friends, showed me the Secret Seed's first adventure pack a while ago. Launched in July this year, "No Hens in the Pen" includes a story book, organic cress seeds, a growing guide, a recipe and a Seed Agent card. Tons of fun for kids in any space, both inside and outside, all year round.

Secret Seed Society from Rosa van Wyk on Vimeo.

I think this is a wonderful initiative, teaching children how to grow their own produce, making them aware of their environment and raising their consciousness of ecological issues such as pollution and climate change. An intelligent stocking filler if ever I saw one!

Caroline Dulko

Hand printed and painted Russian Doll plush toy/small cushions

Recent British textile graduate (Central St Martins) Caroline Dulko makes wonderful, eye-catching prints and cushions for children and the home.
Carole is passionate about screen-printing and illustration and her one-off limited edition textile pieces are original and refreshingly striking.

Handprinted Gentleman tea towel

Screen-printed cushion featuring the goose that laid a golden egg

Screen-printed cushion featuring the owl and the pussycat (back and front) from the story by Edward Lear

You can purchase Caroline's work from her online shop then pop over to her blog, where I found some fab pictures of past designs like these.


Digit dolls by Kia Hing Fay

Clothespeg dolls by Jill Bent

Handprinted finger dolls by Barbara Berrada, Les Zigouis

Digit dolls found via Bondville

Kareena Zerefos

I've found some lovely limited edition prints and gift-cards in Australian artist Kareena Zerefos' online shop. Sydney-based Kareena has a background in design and and now explores a variety of media, including pencil, gouache, tea and ink. Her work combines traditional drawing with contemporary digital graphic techniques and often features children and wild animals in magical situations.
You can see more of Kareena's sketches, commercial projects and artwork on her blog here.

Found via Bondville

Thursday 29 October 2009

Nigel Peake

Section through shed VII

I have long admired the work of Nigel Peake. As you know, I am drawn to collections of things and love colours, patterns and textures. Irish-born, illustrator/artist Peake is a former RIBA silver award commended architecture student from the University of Edinburgh, where he has also tutored and assisted in the design units. I discovered his work via the ever-excellent Analogue Books, and am intrigued by his choice of subject-matter. Nigel Peake's hand-drawn, highly-detailed ink and watercolour drawings explore the architecture of nature, its lines, boundaries, motifs and structures. They open my eyes to the beauty around me in every day life.

Ghost Houses
A set of drawings of Ghost Houses inspired by a trip to Philadelphia.

"Past the noise, glare and pop of South Street Philadelphia there is a church that is now a thrift store on every third Sunday. Where the congregation would have once knelt and prayed is now bundled trash; stacked and reinvented".

Maps book by Nigel Peake
Fields, paths, forests, blocks, places and surrounds

"Documenting small time adventures and excursions outwith a mile radius from where I call home. From train rides facing backwards, to crammed bus rides in tiny hill-top towns, to bike rides through the backyards of Europe. Records of the vast, unyielding concrete miles of Shanghai, to the paths between mountains and forests in late night French countryside to the old paint splattered wooden floor in London that I sleep on from time to time."

A Guide to Fifty Nine Fields Drawn by Nigel Peake

"A world renowned field expert, let Nigel open your unseeing eyes to the fields that surround you. Whether it's a field of leaves, bikes, beehives, or a conversation of birds, after familiarizing yourself with the Nigel's chart, a world of fields will reveal itself all around you".

Take a peek at his beautiful books on sheds , birds and patterns.

Nigel Peake's books are self-published or are published in collaboration with Analogue Books.

Julianna Swaney

So much beautiful work to see in US artist Julianna Swaney's shop Oh My Cavalier.
I also really like these two limited edition prints Julianna is selling at Little Paper Planes.

Check out her journal, drawing blog and wonderful ephemera collection, you won't be disappointed. And keep an eye out for more of these cut-out and assemble mechanical animals in her etsy shop, they look great fun to make and play with.

Wednesday 28 October 2009

Camille - Gospel With No Lord

My treat - the wonderful, original and passionate French singer Camille. More here and here.
Une chanson de Camille, parce que tout le monde l'adore à la maison.

Tuesday 27 October 2009

Books please

Chataigne, by Anton Chekhov and Nathalie Parrain

I'm asking Santa for books this year. I have a long list waiting for him already and I seem to be adding to it on an almost daily basis. I thought I'd share a few of the titles I'd love to find under the tree.

Dear, Sweet Home by Uchida Ayano
from Junku

Illusive, Contemporary illustration part 3
from Gestalten

Du Valjer, handmade notebook made from recycled European and African university envelopes, Swedish metro tickets and supermarket carrier bags.
by Bastiano

Jean Fil à Fil, Roger Mello
éditions Memo

Camilla Engman - The Suitcase series volume 1
Uppercase Gallery

Les Chaises by Louise-Marie Cumont
Les Trois Ourses
found via Vintage for Kids

Boro: Rags and Tatters from the Far North of Japan
You can also look inside and buy it through here
found via the Silly BooDilly

Grandfather's Envelopes by Fujii Sakuko
from Sri
Found via the Silly BooDilly

At Lytte Til Laeken "Listening to the Skylark", a collaboration between Danish textile artist Anette Blaesbjerg Orom and poet Eske K. Mathiesen.
from Ashes & Milk

And, last but not least, I'm so excited because I've just pre-ordered what promises to be an amazing, authoritative book about children's design between 1920 and 1970.

by Carole Daprey, éditions l'as de pique

more of which later when it comes out in November.