A jolly good start to the year…

It’s not even the end of the January yet but so far this year is on fire. And I don’t mean on fire like the 40 degree heat we have been experiencing in Cape Town (when will it end??) or the endless actual fires that have been devouring our countryside. What I do mean, is that Handmade By Me is having a very exciting start to the year!

I have been waiting to publish this post for a week now as we have some VERY exciting news, but it seems we may have to wait another day or two until it has been finalised, so I am so sorry to hold you in suspense…but watch this space!!

In the mean time, we would love to share with you some serious media love we have been lucky enough to have over the past couple of weeks.

In the online sphere, Plascon Spaces invited us for an online Q and A on colour and inspiration. You can read all about it here.

And Oh How Fiancé – wedding and lifestyle blog – wanted to find out more about the designer behind the business. You can read their interview with me here.

SA Garden & Home magazine featured our new African Aloes and Prickly Pears designs in their latest issue below.

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And Lééf met hart & siel magazine featured our Victoriana placemats which are perfect for dinner parties of all kinds. See our dinner table setting inspiration using our Birds of Paradise placemats below.

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This was last night’s dinner’s table setting below – featuring hues of red, orange and purple – using our Orange Squares Pattern table runner and our new Birds of Paradise placemats. Both available to order from our online shop.

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Send us your Handmade By Me table setting inspiration or colour way and we’ll share it on our social media feeds.

Find out more:
website: www.handmadebyme.co.za
facebook: www.facebook.com/handmadebymeblog
twitter: @handmadebymeSA
shop: shop.handmadebyme.co.za

 

A colourful commission for Cillian Johnston…

Last year I was approached by an Irish furniture and design company called Cillian Johnston who were looking for someone to help them design and create a unique print for fabric, that they could then make into cushions and lampshades. The brief was to come up with a graphic representation, but not a directly literal representation, of a lamp that was awarded best new product in the category “Table Top and Interiors” at Ireland’s premier design and craft expo, Showcase Ireland, 2012, The Aran Beag rectangle lamp. It has two Aran knitted panels with a distinct cable pattern on the front and back of the base, as you can see below, and that was going to be the inspiration behind my design.

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They wanted me to try and use the aran knit style and the purply colours like the first lamp above, but weren’t neccessarily tied to it. And so I did some research on different aran knit styles and the one that grabbed me the most was the honeycomb style, featured in the centre of the jersey below.

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I took 2 different ideas, one of making the basic repeat pattern very graphic and bold following the honeycomb aran knit style (kind of), and the other of highlighting the smaller finer detail of the actual knitting stitches themselves. I wanted to try and show the changing colours and textures of different angles of the stitches graphically, and did so using lots and lots of different purply and bluey photographic textures…

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Below is a closeup of the pattern…the difference in scales of the pattern, up close and at a distance, allows the pattern to be used to create two completely different styles that can work together as a team or completely on their own.

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Here are some of the pictures they took to show me their finished products. Note the beautiful hexagonal shaped wooden buttons which highlight and work so well with the honeycomb pattern. We decided to use use the bigger scale on the front of the cushion, and the smaller on the back so you could switch them around or feature them side by side.

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You can buy these lovely items from their online shop.

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“Award winning master craftsman Cillían Johnston spent many years in furniture making and antique restoration before being joined by his industrial designer wife, Lisa in 2003. Since then they have been servicing and supplying private clients, architects, interior designers and furniture contractors nationwide and in the UK with innovative and original furniture design.

 In 2011 they expanded their business into home accessory and giftware design when they began working on a range of lighting products called “Aran Beag” that are inspired by the traditional craft of Aran knitting.

 Cillían has developed a solid reputation for excellence in workmanship using the best quality materials, in particular Irish hardwoods and his Aran Beag lamps are no exception. The timelessness of Cillían’s products and exacting finish to detail are qualities maintained from the business’s inception.

 It is Cillían’s uncompromising attention to detail that sets him apart: “We are obsessed with quality; nothing leaves our workshop until I’m happy with it”.”

wall flowers…

I am so delighted to let you know that 2 of my lovely wallpapers have been featured in a beautiful and aptly titled “Wall flowers” feature in the latest issue of Garden & Home. Both the Spring Has Sprung, Peach Floral wallpaper and the Birdy Num Num in Purple Blue wallpaper have been listed amongst the “made to measure” section. If you’re in the mood for romance this season nothing says commitment quite like wallpaper : )

But for those of you looking for something a little less permanent I have found a new supplier as an alternative,  who offer fully removeable self adhesive wallpaper which is uses PVC-free paper, and is durable and eco-friendly.

See more detailed pics of my 2 wallpapers below…both are available from my new Handmade By Me online shop.

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Spring Has Sprung Peach Floral Wallpaper

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Birdy Num Num in Purple Blue Wallpaper

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Plum Crazy!

My friend Claire asked me if I would design her a wallpaper pattern for her new foodie blog called “The Plum Farmer’s daughter“. I thought I’d keep the pattern fun and modern because there are so many “same old” fruit prints out there. The beauty of digital printing is that it allows me to play around a lot more with photographs and textures and I wanted to combine the two with my very distinctive digital style. I also wanted to develop the pattern into napkins, tea towels and eventually aprons so the pattern had to be bright and colourful. I only found out AFTER I had created this design that Claire isn’t really into purple!!!! (ha ha I know!!!) So I created a slightly more blueish version for her to use.

Here they are below…soon to be available in napkins and tea towels for all people plum crazy : )

Handmade by me.

striking strelitzias…

I recently thought that my pretty proteas fabric (see below) needed a friend, something similar but different, that would work well alongside it, but also stand out on it’s own. I immediately thought of strelitzias (also known beautifully as birds of paradise) as they are absolutely gorgeous and really bright and colourful. And since they are also common to south africa, I felt they were perfect for the job. They also happened to work really well in the same geometric style I used for the proteas…and so after some seriously tedious repeat pattern work…I present to you…my striking strelizias pattern…

here’s a closeup…

Here they are together with my pretty proteas…sigh…

The striking strelitzias along with the pretty proteas are both available in cushion covers, napkins and tea towels at my Etsy store.

Handmade by me.

Pretty proteas

I must be feeling sentimental…or it was the gorgeous bunch of proteas I was eyeing out, but couldn’t afford to buy, in M&S the other day. Anyways they’re so beautiful and remind me of home…how could I resist being inspired?

Now available in cushion covers and napkins at my Etsy store.

handmade by me.