How I Create & Design...
Having a B.A. Hons. in fashion and textiles creating designs is what I do. Originally everything was hand-painted, and I must admit I was a little sad when digital took over, but to go forward I had to evolve and embrace it. My daughter, Harriet, taught me Photoshop and Illustrator which allowed me to combine all my art skills, opening up a whole new world of design allowing my imagination to run wild with colour and compositions.
My first ranges were home accessories on decorque.com which is now incorporated into this new website. The name Decorque was derived from Décor and cork with a twist! Yes, my first collection was a unique range of digitally-printed Cork Placemats and Coasters. Cork was a popular natural product, which went out of fashion and deserved a revival with a new look. Its qualities are that is natural, eco-friendly, heat resistant, and practical; with some fantastically colourful detailed designs printed digitally, it now becomes an amazing product for the home. From these first designs came new ideas for art-prints, plastic placemats, lampshades, cushions, mouse-mats, greetings cards and gift tags.
When designing for the Home Accessories range there were elements of certain designs that I knew I could take further – selecting, adapting, redesigning and recolouring – they were reinvented on to cards. I always wanted to design my own range of greetings cards, as it has become increasingly difficult to find cards with originality, that are not mass produced and have the quality of artwork that you would want to keep.
The sending of cards is a very important part of the U.K.’s social culture. People still want to celebrate special occasions with loved ones and connect with others by sending a card. We feel pleased when we have found that perfect card for someone and hope the amount of time and thought is reflected in the pleasure they get from our choice.
Decorque Cards has a stunning range of digitally-printed cards, sold in singles or in packs, many are blank meaning that they are perfect for many occasions. They can be viewed in collections, so you see the full impact of the design group together from which to choose. My hand-crafted cards are more individual, being uniquely designed and made with many of those extras you may be searching for with personalisation and embellishments. I am always willing to take on commissions for cards; you might be searching for an individual card, a ‘one-off’ for a very special person or an occasion.
I do love selling directly to customers at shows, fairs and festivals; receiving their response is immensely gratifying and confirms that there are like-minded people out there! At recent shows the comments expressed were: “wonderful to see something different’, “I never expected to find such beautiful cards”, “Wow, now that is colour!” and “These cards are too beautiful to send”. My response to the latter is, well why not buy a frame and have one on your wall, after all these are original designs!
A tremendous amount of work goes into my designs and as you can see, the inspiration comes from nature. I love mixing indigenous British flora and fauna with the exotic, adding interesting texture and pattern. The majority of my subjects, animals and birds are hand-painted, other images such as the beautiful roses and shrubs are photographed in our own garden. I like to keep the freshness of nature alive, whether hand-painted, photographed or drawn in Illustrator, and when brought together in Photoshop they come alive again in print.