Friday, 30 August 2019

Creative Quarters... Klara Hawkins

The next designer to be featured in Creative Quarters is Klara Hawkins.

Klara has been an illustrator for over twenty years.
Growing up she always loved drawing and this only increased when she received a set of watercolour pencils for her 8th Birthday.
It was the best present ever and she began drawing landscapes which she entered into competitions at the local village show and won.

Upon leaving school, Klara went to art college and it was there her tutor suggested she would suit illustration.
It hadn’t even occurred to her that being an illustrator was a possible career choice but the
seed was planted and she never looked back.

Leaving Lancashire for London, Klara did a degree in illustration.
Upon graduating she was lucky enough to land her dream job as an illustrator and designer for a top greetings card and gift company.
Here she learnt a huge amount and grew her skills developing best selling ranges for a well known UK department store.

After 16 years working as an anonymous designer Klara was yearning for more and embarked upon a
freelance career. Mostly working on greetings cards and children’s book she has also discovered the
wonderful world of surface pattern. Klara has falling in love with making patterns and enjoys the freedom that it brings to her drawing.

Inspired by different cultures, colour, nature and the great outdoors her work has a naive quality that
appeals to both children and adults alike. Now in her 4th year of business she has been lucky enough to work with clients such as The British Museum, Harrods, Marks and Spencer, Paperchase, Penguin Books, Selfridges, Scribbler, Waterstones and Woodmansterne.

Klara lives in Surrey with her husband and daughter and most days she can be found at her desk happily drawing pictures.
Alongside freelance, Klara is excitedly working on a new venture to launch herself as a publisher.
She’s busy designing greetings cards and gift ranges which she will wholesaling as well
as selling on her website.

Instagram - @klarahawkins

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I hope you've enjoyed reading a little about Klara,
and seeing a selection of her work.

If youre interested in working with Klara,
or want to get in touch, please visit the links above.

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Tuesday, 27 August 2019

Colour Crush...

I'll never get bored of these beautiful peachy tones.
Mixed with terracotta, mustard, dusty blues and deep berry, its definitely up there as a favourite!

(image credits clockwise from top left)

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

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Friday, 23 August 2019

Childrens books out soon!

There are some fabulous books coming out in this latter part of the year.
It doesn't seem like five minutes ago I was posting about children's books out at the beginning of the year!
Where has 2019 gone exactly?
Releases between now and the end of the year include 'Alma and the Beast' from Esme Shapiro which is sure to be a delight, much like her other books.
A new Oliver Jeffers book is always something to look forward to, and another addition to the Franklin and Luna series from Katie Harnett and Jen Campbell, yay!
Heres what to look out for...
Add to wish list, go go go!

Alma and the Beast written and illustrated by Esme Shapiro - published 3rd September
(Tundra Books)

The Fate of Fausto written and illustrated by Oliver Jeffers - published 17th September
(Harper Collins)

The Boy with Big, Big Feelings written by Britney Winn Lee and illustrated by Jacob Souva - published 20th August
(Fortress Press)

Franklin and Luna and the Book of Fairytales written by Jen Campbell and illustrated by Katie Harnett - published 19th September 
(Thames & Hudson)

Gus and the Greatest Catch of All written and illustrated by Victoria Cossack - published 22nd October
(Page Street Kids)

Little People, Big Dreams Bruce Lee written by Maria Isabel Sanchez Vegara and illustrated by Miguel Bustos - published 6th August
(Frances Lincoln Childrens Books)

My Tiny Pet written and illustrated by Jessie Hartland - published 1st September
(Nancy Paulsen Books)

Shadow written by Lucy Christopher and illustrated by Anastasia Suvorova - published 7th November
(Lantana Publishing)

A Year with Mama Earth written by Rebecca Grabill and illustrated by Rebecca Green - published 10th September
(Eerdmans Books for Young Readers)

The Cutest Thing Ever written by Amy Ignatow and illustrated by Hsinping Pan - published 10th September
(Abrams Appleseed)

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Friday, 16 August 2019

Friday Freebie...

A little desktop freebie for you today...happy Friday!

Click here to download the desktop wallpaper

(image above © Louise | Love Print Studio)

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Wednesday, 14 August 2019

Ella and the Roo...

Rachel Howkins is the creator of Ella and the Roo, a design-led brand handcrafting artisan woodland and safari animal head wall hangings and contemporary art prints for children's rooms.
Handmade in Oxfordshire using aged old natural hand dyeing traditions which create beautiful tonal imperfections, delicate hand stitching and embroidery, all helping towards creating a unique piece every time.
Established in 2016, Rachel has a passion for creating beautiful children's heirloom decorations to inspire young imaginations that can be handed down from generation to generation.
Currently available is a woodland collection which includes a badger, fawn, fox, mouse, bear and rabbit, and a safari collection including a leopard, giraffe and lion.
You'll need to get your orders in quickly as Rachel is closing her shop before she heads off for maternity leave very soon.
Last date for placing an order for animal heads is Sunday 18th August.
They can also be found at Liberty London.

Follow Ella and the Roo on instagram below...

(all images above ©Ella and the Roo)

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Monday, 12 August 2019


Whether you do it with art prints and illustrations or have rooms filled with potted plants, draped foliage and succulents, adorn your space with greenery for a happy home!

John Lewis home decor collection (2)
Beautiful textures in this piece by Alicia Galer (4)

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Friday, 9 August 2019

Something for the weekend...

I'm loving these painted blocks by Handmade Charlotte, and in such lovely colours too!
Metallic rose copper and brushed bronze alongside soft teals, sugary pinks and royal blue, and with added pom poms... say no more.
If you fancy creating this pretty little garland as a weekend craft project, head over to the Handmade Charlotte blog post for full details, shopping list and instructions.

(image above © Handmade Charlotte)

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Tuesday, 6 August 2019

Colour Crush...

A lovely summer palette of beautiful blues, apricot, coral and zingy lemon...yum!

(image credits clockwise from top left)

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

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Friday, 2 August 2019

Etsy shop finds...a chat with Alison Willoughby

This months etsy shop interview is with Alison Willoughby.
An Australian based graphic designer and artist who creates art and art inspired stationery.
Abstract shapes and colourful combinations are the order of the day in Alisons bold and playful designs.
Lets get to know a little about her shall we....

1. Can you tell us a bit about you and your background... 

I loved the art and design subjects in high school and went on to study graphic design at TAFE and Uni. When I was studying I was always keeping busy with little side projects, like making jewellery or collages. 
It was a super creative time for me, I was at design school every day and was excited to be making things and sharing to the early days of Instagram. 
I experimented a lot with different products I’d make for myself that my friends or other people were interested in - that was around the time Etsy was starting to really take off, so I created a shop on there to sell my little projects for some extra income. 
Once I graduated I spent a while interning as a graphic designer before landing full time work. 
I still kept up my Etsy store and started to create prints and artwork, as well as stationery like greeting cards. 
Even though my products were evolving, I have always had a strong focus on colour and colour combinations.
In the last year I have switched up my routine, and now work in house as a graphic designer three days a week, and then freelance for myself two days a week. 
On these days I either do graphic design work, textile design or work on my own products.
I have been doing a few more markets, have seven lovely stockists of my pieces and am loving the balance of it all!

2. What books/ magazines are currently on your coffee table?

Sitting on my coffee table are 2 books at the moment, ‘Eames - Beautiful Details’ and ‘Mid Century Modern Complete’
My boyfriend and I visited the Eames house in Santa Monica last year and it was the coolest experience!
I got him this book for Christmas as we are both really into mid century/modern design and Charles & Ray Eames are just so inspiring.
Also the cover is beautiful so its a great one for the coffee table.

3. Who are your design heroes and what inspires you?

I’m inspired by heaps of different people/designers/artists/fashion etc.

Marimekko is definitely a huge inspiration to me - the Finnish design house, for the bold and bright textiles that stand the test of time. It was founded in the 50's and was created and run by women, which is really cool.
I love Dick Bruna’s illustrations and the bold colours he used in his work.
Yayoi Kusama, of course for her amazing colourful artwork but also for her inspirational story of how she got where she is today - check out ‘Kusama: Infinity’ if you haven’t already!

4. Tell us about a typical day for you...

On one of my freelance days I usually start by going through emails and making a plan for the day. Sometimes I won’t have any urgent deadlines or projects so I just spend the day painting, creating collages or packing any orders for customers or stockists.

By lunch time I either create some strange concoction from my kitchen (CC: or sometimes I go for a walk to meet my boyfriend for lunch, he works close by to home, where my studio is.
I try to fit in some exercise and finish off anything else in the afternoon.

Most days aren’t the same which is the fun of it - I am quite routine driven as a person but am really trying to let that go and enjoy working for myself.
I’ve also been trying to put less pressure on myself to stick to a traditional 9-5 timeframe, because sometimes I am just feeling it more at nighttime and I just roll with it!

5. Can you give us an insight into your creative process?

My work usually starts from a physical place, I like to collect paint swatches and create colour combinations and compositions using collage.
Sometimes that is the finished product, or sometimes I scan or trace the shapes on the computer. These days I often just illustrate from the get-go on the computer too, it just depends what is working!
I kind of collect colour combos in my head, or take weird photos of stuff to document the colours.

For my painting work, I often have quite a strong plan going into a piece - I am still new to painting and really can’t go with the flow of it yet - the designer in me needs a solid plan. I usually rough sketch up the composition, and plan colours before starting.

6. Where do you work? Describe your studio/work area...

I work at my home studio, in Collingwood - in inner city Melbourne, Australia. I’ve got a big desk, with all my inspo books sitting above me on the wall. 
It’s usually an absolute mess in there but sometimes I try to tidy it up and it looks pretty again!
I often move around the apartment and sit wherever the light is nice. I’ve often got podcasts on to fill the quietness of working on my own - lately I’ve been listening to Bobo & Flex, all about relationships and the Wowee! Podcast by two Melbourne creatives, interviewing other creative people.

7. In three words, describe your work...

Colourful, bright & bold

8. What makes you laugh?

My boyfriend Denny is pretty funny and so are my family & friends! 

9. What are you currently passionate about or fascinated by and how is it inspiring your work?

I recently went to see a documentary about the Bauhaus design movement for the German Film Festival, called Bauhaus Spirit - and it explored how this movement and its ideas are carried into so many different things today. I thought that was really cool and I enjoyed hearing more about the experimental nature of Bauhaus. 
I’ve been trying to experiment with collage pieces consisting of only 3 shapes lately, I guess sort of similar to the 3 Bauhaus shapes, and finding the beauty in the super simple and minimal - its actually really difficult! You can check out some of these on Instagram -

10. What’s the most popular item for sale in your etsy shop?

Probably one of my greeting card designs! 

A huge thanks to Alison for taking the time to be part of the etsy interview series here on the blog.
If you'd like to follow her, here are a few links...

instagram | etsy | website

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