Friday, 30 October 2009

There is always something satisfying about finding an image that makes you feel slightly uneasy. This photo from London based photographer Felicia Honkasalo (via booooooom!) reminds me of the terrifying thriller 'What Lies Beneath' whilst also conjuring up thoughts of serenity and beauty. Oddly lovely!

Some new Eleanor Grosch prints arrived over the last few days including these lovely new designs - which we like very, very much!

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

The rain is pouring down here on Victoria Street but we have got plenty of great things to cheer up the Grey day. What better way to stay warm this winter and keep a smile upon your face than with one of Donna Wilson's beautifully knitted lambswool scarves wrapped lovingly around!

Sunday, 25 October 2009

We seem to have in inundated with boxes of goodies from some wonderful artists over the last few days (back log from the postal strike) so it feels a little like Christmas is starting early this year at The Red Door. One of our favourite arrivals had to be the 4 amazing boxes from Brighton based John Dilnot. We have stocked his cards and screenprints for quite sometime now, but feel super lucky to have a selection of these gorgeous boxes featuring Holyrood Palace and The Isle of Skye to name a few. You really have to pop in to see the beauty of these pieces (which by the way differ slightly from those images above) before they fly out the door. Thanks John.

Friday, 23 October 2009

Ladies and Gentlefolk... Christmas is almost upon us and the good people of Susiemaroon, The Bowery and Wooden Tree have clubbed together to bring us the most exciting shopping and bopping opportunity of the season! Marche Marche will be all your favorite local designers, artists & makers in one room with tasty treats and late night beats it's sure to get your toes tapping. We hope to see you there, we will certainly be there supporting Red Door Favourites Elsie Dodds, The Dandelion Project and of course Susiemaroon herself. So go on... give lovingly made gifts....

Monday, 19 October 2009

Making us smile today is this 'Mr Britain & Monocle' pendant from She Draws. Love it!

Sunday, 18 October 2009

Two great new prints in from Scottish artist, screen-printer and designer Chris Macfarlane. Mixing digital imagery and traditional printing on high quality artist paper, Chris celebrates the wonderful eighties mix tape. Long may it live on.

For all those tape lovers here's some wise words from Nick Hornby's wonderful book High Fidelity on making the perfect mix tape.....

"The making of a great compilation tape, like breaking up, is hard to do and takes ages longer than it might seem. You gotta kick off with a killer, to grab attention. Then you got to take it up a notch, but you don't want to blow your wad, so then you got to cool it off a notch. There are a lot of rules.........a good compilation tape is a very subtle art. Many do's and don'ts. First of all you're using someone else's poetry to express how you feel. This is a delicate thing....."

Go dust that old tape recorder and get mixing! Ahhh....the memories.......

Friday, 16 October 2009

Being Chocolate week and all, we decided to post our two favourite chocolate recipes of the day. Making our tummies rumble this morning are an Italian Trifle and the amazing Hot Chocolate cake with Toffee Sauce. Thanks delicious, you once again, made out mouths water (and its only 9.20am).

Thursday, 15 October 2009

The Red Door Gallery would simply not be the same if it wasn't for the wonderful support of independent and emerging designers and artists dedicated to presenting original, inspirational and affordable artwork.

In amongst all of these talented folk is the very lovely and talented Katy Brown. Founder of olive & brown, Katy will be launching brand new work, including bespoke embroidered wallpaper, at the much anticipated Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2009. Held at Spinningfields in Manchester from the 22nd to the 25th of this month, the fair provides a unique shopping experience, showcasing creations from some of the most talented designer-makers in the UK today. A week ahead of the big event we were able to grab an interview with a busy Katy for our next regular designer/artist feature. Thanks for giving us a great read Katy!

Q - Please describe what you do. What materials/techniques do you use?

A - I would say I am a modern embroiderer. Recently my work had involved pencil drawings too. I have also been embroidering on to paper and have created bespoke wallpaper for the Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2009.

Q - Where do you live? How does it feed your art?

A - I live on the borders of Greater Manchester and Cheshire. I love Manchester, it inspires me whenever I go in to the city.

Q - Describe your studio. Where is it? How often do you use it? Do you work alone?

A - I currently create work in my bedroom (pictured above).....I sound like a teenager! I have recently moved back in with my mum and my bedroom is the only room I have to work in. It's not great and doesn't inspire me to get on and work. Since moving out of the home I owned with my ex boyfriend it has been difficult to be creative. Since getting the place at the Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair it has forced me to get on and work and I'm now back on track. It feels fantastic to be doing what I love again.

Q - What name do you work under?

A - My grandma's name was Olive. I loved her to bits. She died three years ago. She was a wicked person with a wicked sense of humour and her own personal style. I liked the idea of her being part of something that she would be proud of me for and would fully support me on. Sometimes I get sad knowing that she will never get to see how well I'm doing.

I also like the name Olive, although she hated it. Her full name was Olive Edna and she couldn't stand it...ha ha. I am obviously the 'Brown' bit.

Q - Have you always been a designer? How did you end up doing what you do now?

A - No. I did a Fine Art degree and was working with much more conceptual ideas. Prior to my degree though I did an Art Foundation course and focused on textiles. I wanted to do an embroidery degree at Manchester, however due to failing my A Levels (I was too interested in singing) I didn't get a place, so ended up doing Fine Art in Sheffield. I'm glad I did though as I met some of my closest friends there and two people I couldn't live without. I believe that there is a reason for most things.

Q - Where did you train?

A - I pretty much taught myself.

Q - What inspires you?

A - There are many artists on etsy that inspire me. My best friend and her lovely man often inspire me. They are two very creative souls and I often find them very inspiring. My mum, although she doesn't inspire me in the creative way, she inspires me with her hard work. She runs her own business too and I often get home from a night out to find her beavering away at her computer!

Q - Is there anyone or any style that you're influenced by?

A - I am mainly influenced my Fashion. Clothes are a big thing in my life, how I dress is very important to me (god, that sounds so shallow). My favourite fashion designers are Stella McCartney, DAY Birger et Mikkelsen (pictured above, top), Lyell (pictured above, bottom) and Beaumont Organic. I tend to read fashion blogs like stylebubble and The Sartorialist. I also love etsy and bloesem for craft inspiration. I read Antler mag, Elle Deco and Vogue on a monthly basis. I often draw the models from Vogue and use them in my work.

Q - What piece of machinery or tool could you not live without?

A - My sewing machine!

Q - Besides the products you sell at The Red Door is there anything else that you make?

A - Yes. Check out my website

Q - What are you working on at the moment?

A - I have recently been working on pieces for the Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair. This includes framed embroidered art work, pencil drawings and collage, wallpaper, cushions and brooches (pictured above) that I sell in the Red Door.

Q - What do you do when you are not working? Can you switch off? How do you unwind?

A - I do lots of different things. I like watching films (especially French ones), going to gigs, walking, going to the gym, spending time with the lovely man in my life, shopping, having a glass of wine or two, cycling......and many more things. I am not very good at sitting and doing nothing.

Q - What's your favourite pastime?

A -Watching people whilst drinking coffee, with a magazine or book in hand that I'll probably never read but at least I won't look weird!

Q - What do you like least about being a designer? Any occupational hazards?

A - Nothing!

Q - What do you like most about being a designer?

A - The feeling of achieving what I want in my life by being creative. So far I will never look back and think I didn't try to do what I've always wanted to do.

Q - What's your favourite possession? This can be absolutely anything!

A - I have a few but I am not very good with material possessions. I'm better at treasuring people. But if I had to answer then basically anything this lady (sunlight on closed lids) has given me and a beautiful old charm bracelet given to me one Christmas by Olive Edna.

Q - What advice would you offer to other creatives?

A - Stick at it. If it makes you happy then it is worth the hard work.

LINK LIST. Who's work do you love? Any artists/makers/friends/galleries/websites you'd like to share.

Thank you Katy! Wishing you every success at the Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair next week.

For more information on visiting the fair go to the Great Northern Events website.

Monday, 12 October 2009

New delicious textile treats just in from Gillian Kyle celebrating some true 'icons' of Scottish life! We'll be catching up soon with the wonderful Glasgow-based designer in our regular designer/artist interview, so keep those eyes peeled......

Thursday, 8 October 2009

We are very excited to announce that the new delivery from Biscuit Boutique, including some new midget gem pieces, has attracted our favourite Scottish comedian Billy Connolly to The Red Door Gallery for the second time. Who can resist the fun that comes with these delicious looking jewels!

Tuesday, 6 October 2009

On a recent visit to Berlin, I was treated to some of the best cupcakes on this earth. Now, these treats from the aptly named shop, cupcake, were no muffin impersonator - fluffy and light cake mixture with generous buttercream icing in the best flavours around, these sweet little bundles of goodness were very much the real deal. I left their wondering why on earth we don't have one of these bakeries in Edinburgh - oh well, more excuse to head back to Berlin and more specifically cupcake!

Friday, 2 October 2009

Roll up roll up! The second annual Art Walk on West Port and the Grassmarket is underway. Beginning at the newly opened Art Rock Hostel, its your chance to peer that little bit longer in some of the area's finest shop and business windows. Lorna, a final year student, has teamed up Edinburgh College of Art Graduates and students with local business encouraging artistic peeping tommary, and opening up our friendly and welcoming community to a new gaggle of art lovers and students.

The Red Door Gallery's hottest ECA graduates are gracing out windows at the moment, with the extended run of Alice's Avery Exhibition in one window and rising star, and children's home ware designer Elsie Dodds (pictured) vibrantly residing in our other window. If you fancy a walk this weekend and want to avoid the rain, the Art Walk is the perfect urban compromise.... come take a peep!

Thursday, 1 October 2009

We were very happy to find ourselves mentioned on the wonderful website daily candy, who recently featured Edinburgh (and The Red Door) as a travel destination. And a lovely shot of Edinburgh they used too!