I won’t lie.
Checking out Instagram accounts and looking at beautiful objects is not the worst job.
I’m currently penning biographies for independent UK designers at Good Design Matters.
The client wanted to focus on fresh, talented British designers and make luxury, bespoke pieces more accessible.
I research and write about each artist’s craft, values and inspiration, style and creative process.
Please see some samples below:
“Grains, gnarls, and knots are what inspires Rosie Brewer.
The Devon-based designer creates beautiful, wood-crafted pieces of kitchenware, the material of choice influenced by her parents’ sawmill where she played as a child.
Specialising in serving boards and spoons of traditional English hardwoods, and branching out into coasters, knives and cake servers, Brewer’s British contemporary designs marry minimalism and functionality. Walnut, elm, sycamore, cherry, oak and maple are just some of the woods regularly worked with. Their earthy, varied textures, warm colours and tones give rise to the unique design of the pieces. As the designer says ‘all wood is a natural story and no two stories are alike’.
Some popular pieces include the half-half sycamore boards that combine the caramel-coloured heartwood of the sycamore to contrast with the blonder outerwood of the tree to produce an understated, yet visually stunning board for everyday use. Brewer’s elm knot boards make use of the trunk’s different shapes and natural design, with the knot forming the board’s handle, while a new set of coasters exposes contrasting ring lines by cross-sectioning a trunk of a young tree.
Sleek lines are a feature of the pieces, finished with natural, food-safe oils. All FSC or sustainably harvested and produced, rest assured that your unique serving boards, spoons or pot stands are not just gorgeous but have a minimal impact on nature.”
“Clay and porcelain become putty in the hands of Sue Pryke, an artist that has designed and produced ceramics ranges for commercial giants such as Ikea, Marks & Spencers, Waitrose, John Lewis as well as Sainsburys. Pryke specialises in creating high-quality, simple and beautiful tableware and homewares.
The latest Mr & Mrs collection exhibits Pryke’s fine attention to detail and superior craftsmanship in creating classic and striking pieces with perfect symmetry and smooth surfaces. Pared back and understated in appearance, each piece is made from vitrified earthenware which is slip-cast and then kilned at high temperatures. The range of milk pourers, teapots, teacups and mugs are inspired by the traditional English countryside, and come in a variety of muted colours – stone, pale and dark grey, and indigo.
Gleaming white porcelain, elegant, clean lines and perfectly balanced in proportion, the fine bone china collection comprises delicate yet durable creamers, dinner and side plates, mugs and bowls. Void of extraneous decoration or colours, these pieces are free of pretension and prove that less really is more.”
“Jack Havelock Bailey founded his Kent studio in 2015 and hasn’t looked back since. Creating contemporary homewares from concrete and wood, his pieces are geometric and balanced, with some clearly also bearing the stamp of Japanese architecture and design.
The process of creating these objects is just as much a part of the story as the end result for Havelock. Without discriminating between objects formed by modern technology or traditional, more manual means, the designer is solely focussed on ensuring each of his products is perfect.
Havelock believes that ‘Furniture, products and objects are just like buildings in the respect that they need to be meticulously designed, interrogated, considered and refined’, and hence his background as an architect serves him equally well in his current vocation.
His favourite so far? The Origami Paperweight which weighs a meagre 225g, but packs a punch in terms of its minimalistic beauty. The diamond-shaped facets are formed by an origami paper mould, and each is unique due to the drying process when bubbles form on the concrete. Using a similar pattern, Havelock’s Origami Concrete Coasters are backed by cork to protect surfaces from scratching. The muted grey of the concrete gives it a modern, sophisticated, yet elegant look.
Other popular pieces include the Champfer oak boards resembling traditional Japanese mokoshi roofs. Made from FSC certified oak, and covered with a food-grade safe beeswax and linseed oil, they come in sets of three, of varying sizes, but can be bought separately as well. The beautiful grain and warm tones of the oak comes through, symmetrical and even.”