Friday, 1 July 2011

The Friday Interview: Lisa from lisaghove

OK, I’m on an interview roll, and I’ve got another interview for you today. This one is with Lisa, who makes the most stunning cushions and bags out of vintage fabrics. I just love her style. Go and have a look at her etsy shop and tell me you’re not tempted. What I think is great about her things is the boldness of her colour combinations, because they’re adventurous but it all looks coherent and somehow a bit cool. And of course I always love anything patchwork, the idea of a tiny scrap of something being given a new lease of life in something else is wonderful. I mean, it does mean I can never throw anything away but that’s fine. I’m sure we could just move into a bigger house, especially as property is so afforable here, this is irony.

Take it away, Lisa!
Lisa with her stunning cushions, I love them so. Also that sofa is just like ours
What really hits me about your shop is the lovely way you combine colours. Do you have favourite colour combinations?
thank you! oh well, yes i am obviously rather fond of colour, yep! And indeed, it is combining colours that i find exciting - especially using unexpected combinations and crazy clashes, sometimes it just makes me giggle when i put some wacky pieces together! That said, it depends on my mood, some days i find myself going for muted or jewel tones. Turquoise, blues and greens with mauves is rather irresistable too... And somedays i can't keep away from the kitschy pink and yellow combinations, modern prints with vintage lace, bunny rabbits and bluebirds… I've gotten bolder with my combinations since i've been making the cushions, aided be the fact that my fabric stash has grown splendidly (happiness!).

The vintage fabric you use is fabulous. Does it take a lot of searching out?
oh yes, i have phases of seriously obsessive fabric hunting to boost my stash. And i get a tad miserable when i am coming to the end of a favourite piece. I hunt in boot sales and charity shops which i love to do - often what i find in these places are interesting textures, prints, wools etc from clothing. The truly mod floral type i mostly bid my socks off for on ebay - i figure if it ends up quite expensive then i can always sell a bit on, and keep a bit for my cushions, but i have a limit - some pieces are way out of my league. [Lisa, I am a fellow ebay-vintage-fabric stalker. I shall try not to bid against you. And yes some things are v expensive, Eames I’m looking at you].

Do you have a typical customer?
Hmmm, i guess i don't know the answer to that. I mostly sell on etsy of course so i don't get to meet my customers, though some i get to know a little through the process - especially those who make custom requests as we have more dialogue together. I have also just started selling at fairs and also an Open House event in the Brighton Festival, which i greatly enjoy. Some people will just love my work and i guess because we have a similar taste then we make a connection - i really like that. I think often that my customers are those who have been dreaming of making themselves a lovely patchwork but just haven't had the time or whatever, then they find that i have made one for them and we are mutually chuffed!

What do you like about the whole patchwork aesthetic?
Well, it's great that i can recycle old fabrics and bits of clothing, that pleases me to be at least a little green. Mostly i think i just love the opportunity to play around with the pieces i have and experiment with putting colours and styles together, mixing old and new. And i think theres just something so 'homey' and comforting about a patchwork, i like that too!

Are there other patchwork artists you admire?

Well i completely and utterly adore the work of design store Squint - you know those stunning upholstered patchwork chairs and sofas - i WANT one sooo much - i am quite sure one day i shall own one of my very own (probably not soon though!). And there are a lot of sellers on etsy who have superb traditional patchwork skills and make very exact and intricate items - respect. [Note from me, Squint are fabulous and I want one too now, perhaps I need to buy a lottery ticket].

What of the things you’re making at the moment are you most excited about?
I'm printing my own fabric!!!!!!!!!
ooh yes, i have been taking a course to brush up on my textile and screenprinting skills, at the moment i'm working on some gorgeous christmas decorations with intricate lacey prints on them (coming to my etsy store - um, soon) [Note from me, let us know when they come in, these sound really exciting!]. And i'm also working on some bird prints - this is a longer work in progress and i am working on them whenever i can find the time - but i doubt they will be ready till next year...
and i am trying to be very efficient and get lots of stock ready for christmas - last year the rush kind of took me by surprise, a big whooosh of activity in nov/dec - so this year i'm gonna be ready - i am, i AM!!
Oh, and some cute brooches are on their way,
and i am working on some painted backdrops to improve my cushions photos on etsy - constantly trying to improve my photography - its quite an uphill climb as i am resistant to 'technical' but it is my sincere aim to make it to the Etsy Front Page - oh yes..


Thank you, Lisa! Loved your interview and love your work, and I wish you all the best with getting on to etsy’s front page (your photographs are very nice. I hope you get spotted!). And get that screenprinted fabric in your shop (I mean, no pressure), it sounds great.

Have a fun weekend everyone x


Voie de Vie said...

Ok, those pillows are just da bomb! Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful.