Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Loving Alice + Olivia Fall 2013

Eeek...sorry for that gap in posts! I've been busy with some client work, but just so you know I'm still around and still scouting out some of life's most stunning surface pattern designs, here is my favourite image from Alice + Olivia Fall 2013:

Alice + Olivia Fall 2013 Ready-To-Wear

I'm in love with the wallpaper as much as I am the skirt! See the entire collection over at Style.com.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Good Things Take Time! Breathtaking Valentino Spring 2013 Couture

Today my inspiration comes from the Valentino Spring 2013 Couture Collection. It is extraordinary; no question. It is not just the final product that inspires me, but the story behind it:
In a fascinating review by Tim Blanks, it is said that it took 850 hours to embroider an organza jacket and skirt, and that is only one example of the incredible artisanal effort that has gone into this collection. It does not surprise me; the intricacy and beauty of the garments is astounding.

Valentino Spring 2013 Couture

Valentino Spring 2013 Couture

Valentino Spring 2013 Couture

Valentino Spring 2013 Couture

Valentino Spring 2013 Couture

If you love fashion, or are looking for inspiration, this is the collection to pore over! You can view the Valentino Spring 2013 Couture collection at the Valentino website or over at Style.com. Both sites offer close up views of the breathtaking details. Don't forget to read the review which offers insight into the inspiration behind the collection. 

Designers: Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli
Photography: Marcus Tondo/InDigital  GoRunway

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Two Very Different Styles, One Massive Impact! Martinich & Carran

One of my favourite reads on the net over the past week is an article over at The Design Files about creative partnership Rowena Martinich and Geoffrey Carran. The Melbourne-based artists have recently launched  Martinich & Carran - an amazing collaborative project that sees the artists' two very different painting styles, complementing each other brilliantly, on products for the homewares market.

Paintings by Geoffrey Carran 

Paintings by Rowena Martinich

The Rose Painting (below) was the pair's first collaboration, and was reproduced onto fabric by Michelle Francis from Frankie & Swiss. This striking result inspired further collaboration and the creation of the Martinich & Carran brand.

Rose Painting by Geoffrey Carran and Rowena Martinich

These outrageously gorgeous and unique cushions are the first pieces to emerge. The cushions are printed with natural pigment dyes on organic cotton/hemp and have feather down inners. More importantly though, they feature Geoffrey Carran's paintings on one side and Rowena Martinich's paintings on the other. The marriage of styles makes a great impact; the two complement each other beautifully. 

Sulphur Crested Cushion by Martinich & Carran

Sulphur Crests Cushion by Martinich & Carran

Joseph Banks ii Cushion by Martinich & Carran

Gough Cushion by Martinich & Carran

Male Gang Gang Cushion by Martinich & Carran

 Cocky Landing Cushion by Martinich & Carran

Grooming Cushion by Martinich & Carran

Rowena and Geoffrey's story has a delightful romantic element too. I encourage you to read the article over at The Design Files where author Lucy has presented a lovely account of the couple, their art, and their meeting. You can also view more of the artists' respective art practices by visiting www.geoffreycarran.com and www.martinich.com.au. The website for the pair's collaborative work is over at www.martinichandcarran.com.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Fresh and Colourful Fruit and Vege Prints: Bobo Choses Spring Summer 2013

Beautiful Bobo Choses; the Spring Summer 2013 collection is well conceived and beautifully executed. Can fresh fruit and vegetables be a super-fun theme? Bobo Choses makes it so. Meet Jean Gustav - gourmet elephant, and friendly neighbourhood grocer. Everything in his shop is fresh, healthy, and organic. Be inspired by this funny collection of colourful prints and comfy cuts.

Bobo Choses Spring Summer 2013 Collection

Bobo Choses Spring Summer 2013 Collection

Bobo Choses Jean Gustav Large Fit Tee Spring Summer 2013

Bobo Choses 3 Veggies Large Fit Tee Spring Summer 2013

Bobo Choses Milk T-Shirt Dress Spring Summer 2013

Bobo Choses Lemons Overall Spring Summer 2013

 Bobo Choses Lemon Body Spring Summer 2013

Bobo Choses Pear Body Spring Summer 2013

Bobo Choses Mr.Cook Sweatshirt Spring Summer 2013

 Bobo Choses Herrings Bloomers Spring Summer 2013

 Bobo Choses Spring Summer 2013 Collection

Bobo Choses Spring Summer 2013 Collection
Available at Noeuf.

If you are interested in purchasing something from the range or viewing more of the collection, you'll find a great selection at Noeuf. Or you may like to visit the Bobo Choses website and shop.

A Little Lesson for a Little Frog: That's Mine! by Michel Van Zeveren

That's Mine! by Michel Van Zeveren
Published in New Zealand by Gecko Press

I've had it said to me a million times in my life: "Be careful what you wish for". Here the lesson is for a little frog who finds an egg. 'Aha...that's mine', he claims. But other creatures in the mighty jungle also covet the mysterious treasure: "...ssssmine," says the snake. "Ack...ack...ack...actually, it's mine," says the eagle. "...tis mine,' says the lizard, and a fight ensues. But then in a sudden twist, no one wants it:

That's Mine! by Michel Van Zeveren

The story ends with an unexpected double twist completing the tale with humour. The illustrations are expressive and have a distinctly hand-drawn look that I think children find very appealing. This book is a hit with my three-year-old girl, but better suited a slightly older child (advertised as suitable for 4+, I would say that is spot on). This is a charming book told with clarity; another goodie from Gecko Press.

That's Mine! by Michel Van Zeveren 
Published by Gecko Press (NZ) 1 February 2012
Origin: Belgium
Ages 4+,  36 pages
ISBN: 978-1-877579-27-1 (hardback)
ISBN: 978-1-877579-28-8 (paperback)
About the Author/Illustrator
Michel Van Zeveren was born in Belgium in 1970. He studied animation (wanting to be the next Walt Disney) before discovering the joy of children's book illustration. He lives in Brussels, Belgium with his wife and daughter.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Step into a Child's Imagination: Anton and the Battle by Ole Könnecke

Anton and the Battle by Ole Könnecke

Something I haven't done for a while is look at the fabulous new children's books that are coming out, so I was excited to receive in the post two delightful books from Gecko Press. The first, Anton and the Battle by Ole Könnecke, is adorable and beautifully illustrated. 

Following on from the success of Anton Can Do Magic (the USBBY winner and ReadBoston Award Finalist) Anton and Luke are back in an epic battle of one-upmanship. Who will be declared the strongest? 

It seems this battle can never be resolved!

But then something unexpected happens and the boys' bravado is put to the test. Perhaps these boys aren't as fearless as they claim! Seeking refuge in a tree, the boys are back on equal terms and the battle is now at an end... 
Or is it?

Anton and the Battle is funny, cute, and a delightful journey into the imaginative world of children. I like that it is not super-soft and fluffy. No, here you'll find the true props of boyish play -  mallets and bombs, lions, tigers and dragons. 
Ole Könnecke's illustrative style is perfect for this story. He makes a clear division between what is real and what is in the imagination of the boys with his use (or absence) of colour. It is very effective. The strength and simplicity of the illustrations really pack a punch - which of course is very fitting!

Anton and the Battle by Ole Könnecke
Published 1 February in NZ by Gecko Press
Origin: Germany
Ages 4+, 32 pages
ISBN: 978-1-877579-26-4 (hardback)
ISBN: 978-1-877579-25-7 (paperback)

About the Author/Illustrator
Ole Könnecke was born in 1961 and spent his childhood in Sweden. He now works as a freelance illustrator in Hamburg, Germany. He has won the Jugendbücher prize for children's illustration 2004 and the Deutscher Jugendliteraturpreis (German Youth literature prize) 2005.

Pop back soon to see another fab new release from Gecko Press!