Monday, 23 December 2013

Happy Christmas

I think it's been the busiest Christmas season EVER. Thank you for all your orders. You have certainly kept us very busy in the studio. I'm going to take a break until the 6th of January when I'll be launching back into action to take my wallpapers to HOME London exhibition at Earls Court.

This lovely picture is at our friend Rebecca Land-Caves house. She has papered her living room in kraft Paper Meadow. I'm grateful to Sarah for her little Christmas photo-shoot and to Rebecca for being SO enthusiastic about my wallpapers. 

I'm grateful to many people for that and I can't wait to do more designs next year but right now I'm looking forward to a big, cosy Christmas rest. It's been quite a year.

Happy Christmas everyone and may all your 2014 wishes come true xxxx

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Angela Smyth - Sketching a Town (and my house)

It's really nice to have recently got to know this super talented artist and all round lovely person Angela Smyth recently. Remember the Valley of Lights lamps last year?...these were hers...or perhaps you've seen her amazing paintings or her fabulous South Pennines map?

A couple of weeks ago we had an evening drinking wine and nattering and at some point in the conversation we talked about my shop/house and how it's the only 'house' left on market street in amongst all the shop fronts and how she had always noticed it and wondered about it, just like me before I lived in it! WELL her keen artistic eye has certainly noted it and it was a lovely surprise when it 'Hannah's place' appeared in her video of her 'sketching a town'.

Look out for it.

Made me smile so much :)

Monday, 2 December 2013

Christmas Open Studios

This weekend there were Christmas open studios at Northlights and Brooklyn studio groups and we popped a long yesterday afternoon. I don't get round the studios in the summer because my own is open and usually I work in the shop every Sunday in December (not this year now we have the lovely Suzi) so it was a treat to get to visit myself. 

We started of in Brooklyn Studios and I really liked Angie Rogers work. Gorgeous papercuts, prints and dioramas.

We had a little conversation about lighting these up. I always want to illuminate everything! Papercutting and light just go hand in hand don't they!

Now this cute lady is Cathy Edwards or 'Cathy Bags' as we call her fondly. I have known Cathy since I first moved to Hebden in 1999 and got my tiny studio space at Northlights where she was a full time shoemaker crafting posh brogues for London gentlemen. 

Cathy was always the first one in the studio in the morning and the last to leave at night. Such a hard worker and super skilled.

Now, when she is not  in her little white cottage on the side of a hill tending her three small children she is busy making her own range of coveatable leather bags. She's a clever one.

Cathy is opposite lovely printmaker Linda Thomas (I can imagine there's quite a lot of gossiping going on) who has been making these lovely little printed books.

And let me introduce you to my friend Hannah Penguin. Well really she is Hannah Lawson but as she spends a lot of time in the Antarctic and doesn't make lamps this helps us all know which Hannah we're talking about!

Hannah has an incredible life as a wildlife guide on cruise ships in far flung places. She then comes back to her little studio in Hebden Bridge and creates woodcut prints and paintings of the amazing things she has seen.

She takes awesome photos too.

Then we popped next door to Northlights. This studio group is where I first started on my artistic journey all those years ago. They were good old days :)

Kate Boyce is still there. When I first knew her she was painstakingly hand painting colour separations for wallpaper design company. Now she is a sought after landscape painter and lampshade designer/maker (we sell her brand House of Chintz at Radiance).

It was exciting to see that she is now experimenting with ceramics too.

This is Rachel Hawthorn making some felt. 

And this is smiley Kate Rhodes. She is a jeweller but the picture I took of her earrings was all blurry. 

You'll have to look on her website instead!

Lastly we popped in on Andy Pointon and it was lovely to see all his gorgeous fifties inspired prints together.

I bought one of his pretty shopping bags. I'll be going to the Co-op in style.

It was a satisfying hour of seeing what everyone had been up to and having a chat. There are loads of artists who I haven't even talked about here too. Next year. End of June. We'll all be open for two weekends this time so you'll have to make a day of it...or even a weekend. 

Keep an eye on the Hebden Bridge Open Studios website for details.

Saturday, 23 November 2013

Yorkshire Post feature

The Yorkshire Post has been really good to me over the years and featured lots of my work and Radiance products too. Today my wallpaper is featured in the magazine. 

Customers have been requesting samples as a result already. 

Good work Yorkshire Post. Thankyou so much x

Monday, 18 November 2013

A visit from Japan

Many good things came out of writing Illuminate and one of them was meeting Ai Kawauchi. It was my editor who introduced me to her work. She had seen her exhibiting her at Origin London and thought I might be interested in writing about her. She was right.

Ai makes incredible jewellery and lighting out of silk organza which she painstakingly ties around beans and hardens in a special solution to sculpt these shapes. She lives in Karatsu in the south of Japan and when we visited the country last year we met up and had a wonderful day exploring the bamboo forests of Kyoto.

Last week Ai was visiting London and she came up to Hebden Bridge for a day and a night to see us.

We had a gorgeous walk with the sunrise 

and we soaked up all the Autumn colours.

We talked as best we could (her English is Japanese not so good) about life and work and making it as an artist. Ai has just had her first solo exhibition in Japan. I'm sure it will be the first of many.

Come back soon Ai. The cats of Hebden Bridge are missing you xxx

Monday, 4 November 2013

Wallpaper Giveaway

(Paper meadow wallpaper in teal with a Kirsty Elson house)
It's time. You have all been so supportive on my wallpaper journey AND I'm celebrating a fab Design Sponge feature SO I'd love to giveaway two rolls of wallpaper to one of you.  All you need to do is visit my wallpaper webpage and then comment below (or on the facebook thread if you prefer) letting me know which you'd like and where you'd like to put it. Time for some interior design visualisation! 

It would be super if you'd share it with your friends too.

I'm going to Syke until next Tuesday so I'll pick a winner at random upon my return.

The giveaway includes all the Paper Meadow and Beech Leaves designs but not 'In The Tall Grass' because I haven't got that one yet!

Remember to leave your email address if you comment here on the blog so I can get in touch if you're the winner.

Good luck. x


Everyone! The giveaway is closed now and we have a winner. Two rolls of charcoal meadow are going to Naomi Moy in Epsom. Thankyou soooo much for all of your entries. I loved reading every one!

Sunday, 3 November 2013


(Ffions learning Dutch and has been reading the beautiful Flow magazine to learn new words)

This year has certainly had it's share of excitement with spreading my wings in my beautiful new studio and birthing my first wallpaper collection. It has also seen sadness and pain as back in the summer I broke up with Robert. I hadn't mentioned it here on the blog before as it's so personal but I've always been open about my life and it's circumstances and readers of my blog will have heard me talk about him a million times. As long as I've been 'not mentioning it' it feels like my blog isn't my own somehow and I miss it.

Last week I came down with labyrinthitis, a dizzy virus which has the room spinning and makes you reach for the bucket. Ohhhh how horrible. I was forced to


be really still

be really quiet

get my lovely friends to look after me

and sit under a blanket and do pretty much nothing.

..and d'you know what this is exactly what I needed to do. It was just what I was crying out for after a painful emotional summer and a really exciting wallpaper journey. But, with a bursting inbox and a gallery order list as long as my arm with everyone wanting everything NOW I was just ploughing on ignoring the signs of a body and mind craving a rest.

This is day 5 and I've just got out of pyjamas for the first time and me and Ffion are going for a haircut. It feels nice to have my boots on again. It feels nice to have sat around with the cats and the kids, with a visit from my Mum and from friends bringing me tea, reading magazines, dreaming, reflecting and enjoying being calm. 

Matt and Suzi and my Dad have done so well at keeping orders ticking along. I am so grateful to them for knowing what to do. I have two quiet days in the studio and then I'm off on my annual trip to the Timber House on Skye where I shall continue to chill whilst watching seals in the loch and counting sheep walking past the window. 

Then I'll be back. Right as rain. Rested and ready.

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Wallpaper photos...

We've been busy! 

Winter lamp orders have kicked in. As soon as the nights get longer things go up a noticeable notch so it's been all go in the workshop every day. And as well as the lamp making we have our new baby to look after - the wallpaper. Thanks to Emma (her twitter feed is all about cycling but she is also a brilliant decorator) there has been lots of wallpapering going on so that Sarah and me could style and shoot some photographs.

Sarah and Suzi now have Paper Meadow in teal in their living room. It looks really lovely in there.

Shown here with their Kirsty Elson house. So cute.

We love this photo shot through a roll! Sarah doesn't miss a photo opportunity.

Our friend Beckah has the Beech Leaves in pebble in one of their bedrooms. Shown here with my Ikuko Iwamoto vases that I bought from the lovely Snug Gallery.

We needed to capture it's special sheen.

It's quite subtle this one.

The Kraft colourway looks so nice with the glow of my lamps.

The Beech leaves in mint is perhaps the hardest to communicate the colour of on screen but this comes close.

I've been pinning lots of pictures today. Feel free to join in.

....and I feel a giveaway coming on. Just working out where and when. Stay tuned.


Saturday, 19 October 2013

The Greatness of The Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair

I always come back from The Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair in Manchester inspired by all the wonderful makers and ideas, thankful to all the customers who took a keen interest in my work...and a bit knackered as it's five long days of excitement and commuting and it takes it out of me! 

There was a lot of interest in my wallpaper. Hooray! There were loads of people walking round with my samples. Thanks to everyone who came and made it such a fun show and thanks to everyone who came with compliments and lovely things to say. It was really nice.

 I realised at about 4.30 on the last day that I'd hardly taken any pictures for my annual blog post so I had a quick run round. There was soooo much beauty to be seen. These pictures are a tiny drop in the ocean of loveliness.

I was opposite a lovely ceramicist called Brittany Delany this year. Always nice to have someone to have a chat and a giggle with.

A Northern Light Claire was doing the show for the first time. 

Her stand (and her dear self) looked bright and lovely.

 We were across the aisle from Juliette Hamilton and we watched her create her beautiful willow creatures while she chatted to people on her stand. 

One minute she had made a sphere and next time you looked it had antlers! Impressive. She made all the visiting children magic wands too. Very sweet.

How sweet are these ceramic watch bracelets by Alice Walton? Very sweet indeed!

And we were entertained with the stories behind these plates by Katie Spragg. It was a mystery when these french bees started making blue honey...until they discovered they had been feeding on vats of blue m&m food colouring outside a factory.

...and this fox was found living on the 72nd floor of the Shard building in London, the UK's highest sky scraper, living on scraps of food left by construction workers! Wow.

It was nice to see by Kirtsy. We're going to be stocking her plywood Sphery's at radiance very soon.

Couldn't resist a photo of lovely Jane Blease's colourful embroidered brooches...I think I take one every year!

Suet Yi was there with her ceramics that I love.

I bought one of her beautiful bird tiles.

Ffion visited and bought a gorgeous ring with a spinning gemstone from Corinne Evans.

I was really glad to discover that Andy of Vinegar & Brown Paper was exhibiting for the first time too. I absolutely love his ideas (which he cleverly etches into glass).

Someone who didn't really get it asked him if he was a wizard. 

He said yes! 

Lovely! All in all.

Now I'm back and settled back in the studio the Christmas gallery orders are rolling in so we're making like loons! No rest for me!

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