When people ask what inspires my pattern designs, my answer may sound a bit unhelpful. That’s because in fact, I can find almost anything inspiring! In our product range, we have textile prints inspired by an architectural feature, and a silk scarf inspired by an apartment block. Also, textile ranges inspired by the way plants grow in cities, or by shadows on a rooftop.
If you ask me, all you need to do to get inspired is… stop and look properly.
You recognise these flowers, right? Plantago Lanceolata, or Ribwort Plantain is a common roadside weed you see everywhere, and it seems to be pretty common around the world. What I enjoy is the way the flowers travel up the head of the plant in a little ring, bottom to top, like a match burning up.
I spent time looking at them, sketching them, and thinking about them. One thought I had was how none of the ‘phases’ of the flowering plant is better than another.
All this led to my making a pretty floral print… with a bit of a difference. Can you see it?
At first glance, you may think it looks like a regular repeated motif. But look again, and you’ll see it’s more like a stop-motion animation, with each motif showing another step along the flowering life cycle of a Ribwort Plantain.
And in the end, it’s become a Skinny laMinx fabric design called FLOWER RING (get it? A ring of flowers… flowering?), now available for sale as a screenprinted tea towel, and as cushions and running metres too!
If you want to get better at noticing weeds (and other things), join me during 2022 in my new studio practice that I’m calling #TheAttentionHabit. Read all about it here.