Katy Boden Textiles Designer
All Mapped Out

» Isabelle OC beat me to her mapped out post but the origin is the same.  My faithful Acne scarf printed with an old map of Stockholm on it has served me well in the printed map front.  The fresh influx of printed map activity from Carven’s resort collection has been tempting enough but when paired with captivating birds of flight made out of maps or pleated map dresses seen at The First Cut paper art exhibition, it only exacerbates the need to get some new mapped out garments in my life.  

Claire Brewster’s intricately cut-out vintage map birds made me wish I was the sort of person that put away money for a rainy day to buy an extravagant piece of art.  Brewster creates movement and breathes life into old maps and atlases with incisions, mimicking birds in flight, swarms of insects or tropical plants.  They’re often installed standing away from the wall or foundation board so that they cast complicated shadows that make the cut-outs look like they’re fluttering about on the walls.  I’ve got my eye on any one of the London map pieces by Brewster to start my spiralling downfall towards being one of those people who say “Oh, I’m a collector…”






Carven is no stranger to maps printed on garments.  Guillaume Henry’s girl has always tended to be a bookish creature, travelling in her head by flipping through atlases.  Last summer she was skipping around a bright chartreuse-tinged map of Maine.  This time round, she’s closer to her home turf, bounding about an old engraving of Paris.  Now’s the time to say cheesy French phrases like “Ooohhh…trés jolie!”  There’s no way you can’t feel that old cartography printed on to cute blazers, A-line skirts and blouses is anything but jolly/jolie.  The temptation would be to buy the whole lot and skip around the streets of you guessed it, Pareeeee…

Carvenmap2Carven printed jacket, skirt and wedges from Matches Fashion, Carven printed dress and shirt from Net a Porter.  

Elisabeth Lecourt is perhaps the most common answer on Google if you search for “map dress”.  Her famous series “Les robes géographiques" reach almost iconic levels, when it comes to being blogged and reblogged, so much so that I suspect some people are looking at these flat pleated dresses and wondering whether they’re actual wearable garments.  It would be criminal to leave Lecourt out in an exhibition about artists who cut, sculpt and manipulate paper.


13_caramel-elastique-chewing-gum 13_le-voyage-dans-les-entrailles

13_pierre-verte-rubis-rouge 13_coiffure-playmobil-et-bouton-fleur


Christopher Raeburn made some incredible new strides in his Deploy/Flight S/S 13 collection.  The signature lightweight macs and nylon outerwear is injected with femininity seen in the trapped lace parkas and a delicate looking ripstock lace looking like a camouflage pattern.  The most impressive part of the collection though was the “Remade” element, which is always present in Raeburn’s design ethos.  Raeburn came across a cache of old 1950s military escape maps that were printed on lightweight silk so that they wouldn’t get destroyed in the rain.  Raeburn didn’t even have to transfer any print to a wearable fabric as they were already printed out for him, ready to make playsuits, bomber jackets and dresses.  Up close, it’s fascinating to make out the physical geography on the maps but from afar, it’s a beautiful print that looks anything but upcycled or reused.    









This 1970s vintage Chloe dress has been hanging around the Merchant Archive website for a while.  What with their starry clientale these days with fans such as Florence “and the Machines” Welch, it’s surprising that there’s anything left to be honest.  I might falter and give in to this dress anytime soon though if nobody shares my love of this abstracted colourful globe pattern.  



Chris Kenny's piece Capella is based on a galaxy formation of found map pieces.  For him it's “a fetishistic accumulation of data” - an observation of human presence in a world divided up by unnatural territorial borders.



Finally, trusty Etsy (which has somehow become more interesting than eBay in terms of unique pieces…) has a mapped out specimen, printed with the highway routes of USA and set into a diagonal window pane shift dress.  



6:48 am  •  1 February 2013
The Little Big Reveal

When P. and I lived in Jaipur I got to know a remarkable family of traditional hand block printers in a desert scrub village beyond the city limits. If Rajasthan was a dry-heat Narnia, the printing village was my magic wardrobe, the threshold into a different world.

The visual feast of the place is vivid, but it is the sound of the place that’s especially lasting: the still air was filled with the rhythmic beat of men slapping cotton against the cool water tanks and the double-thump of printers pounding their wooden blocks. Old-timers stirred boiling vats of indigo dye with long poles like dhoti-clad gondoliers, masters of their craft, masters, it seemed, of the universe. Hindu women chirruped and chattered as they spread yards of sari fabric across the public square (a sweeping plot of scored earth) for the punishing Rajasthani sun to fix the natural dyes. I remember humming, singing, the sound of women shooing cows off the drying textiles. Punjabi pop songs drifting tinnily from someone’s workshop radio. Laughter.

Save for the gut-shuddering, soul-deadening, pride-shattering diarrhea I always got after those cherished visits (sorry to break the magic spell!), my days with the printers were hands-down the highlight of India Thymez.

Well one year later my sister Hopie is in Jaipur, picking up where I left off.

In my best Ira Glass voice: Stay. With us.

All photos © Lily Stockman / bigBANG studio. Please credit moi if you repost. Spanx!

(Source: bigbangstudio.blogspot.co.uk)

1:31 am  •  19 January 2013
Friday 31st August 2012, 9.39


The craftiest among you will have heard about our new range of Liberty Print Lifestyle craft fabrics, which have just launched in store. The Liberty Lifestyle collection is an exciting new range of Liberty Print fabrics which are suitable for crafting, patchwork and all sewing projects.

The first collection ‘Bloomsbury Gardens’ consists of five different colour palettes and eleven prints. Each print in the collection has been designed here in our studio by one of our in house designers Sholto Drumlanrig.

We catch up with Sholto who tells us more:

Tell us a little about yourself and what it is about designing that you love?

I have been a textile designer for 20 years and my first job was actually in the Liberty Print studio working alongside Emma Mawston who is now Head of Design at Liberty Art Fabrics. I love being a textile designer and feel very privileged to do something I enjoy so much. I like the creative aspect of developing prints and researching a subject for inspiration. I also love adding colour to the designs. Colour is very important as you can make a bad design look good with colour but you can not make bad colour look better with a good design.

How did the Bloomsbury Gardens Collection all begin?

When I started to design the current collection I used the area I live in which is Bloomsbury as a starting point. It’s a part of London with a rich cultural history. Home to the Bloomsbury set, the British Museum, University College London and Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts. The area also has some of the finest garden squares in London and an abundance of beautiful domestic architecture.

I found the Bloomsbury set a particularly rich source of inspiration and found myself
looking at Charleston, the country side house belonging to Duncan Grant and Vanessa Bell, with its unique interiors all hand painted and stencilled in wonderful soft yet intense hues. Along side this I researched the Omega Workshops the design collected started by Roger Fry. From this point I broadened my search for visual imagery and looked with the Liberty Archivist Anna Buruma at designs from this period. Then I began to redraw and put into repeat some of these designs. I also developed new prints based on my research. After numerous colour ways and incarnations of various designs I completed the collection.

How did you decide on the print names?

The prints were all named after various writers, artists and designers belonging to the Bloomsbury set.

What is your favourite design and colour palette?

My favourite two designs are Lytton and Copeland as I think they most represent the feel of what I was trying to create.

What will your next project be?

I am very interested in looking into the work of Charles Rennie Mackintosh Architect and Designer. I am planning a trip up to Glasgow and will also looking at Art Nouveau and de Stijl imagery from the archive

Bloomsbury Gardens – A closer look at how each of the prints came about

Lytton: An archive print created for Liberty in 1933, chosen and re-worked to represent a design of sketchy flowers and leaves dominated by outlines on a hand painted screen by Duncan Grant.

Dorothy: A design of floating flowers and abstract shapes amidst a large area of coloured blotch representing a fabric created by Duncan Grant called ‘Grapes’ upholstered on to Venetian chair backs. The design was originally created for Liberty in 1937 by Pierre Bres.

Catherine: A design inspired by a decorated abstract screen painted by Duncan Grant in the 1930s, the screen resided in the studio, a place where visitors always found something new and exciting. Catherine was originally created for Liberty in 1969 and printed in 1971.

Dance: This print represents silhouetted white florals on a darker ground painted on a screen by Duncan Grant in 1932, daisies on Duncan Grant’s bedroom door and painted on wall panels by Vanessa Bell in Clive Bell’s study. The design has been re-worked from a print created by Jack Prince in 1991 and used in the Fashion Fabric collection in 1993.

Copeland: This design was originally printed at Merton and designed in 1965 by Colbertaldo Dinzl, the design was selected to represent the bouquets of florals on more traditional upholstery within Charleston.

Garnett: Originally printed at Merton in 1971 represents the spontaneity of the painting and works of art covering the entire house at Charleston.

Virginia: Created by Sholto Drumlanrig, this design was inspired by the walled garden at Charleston. Vanessa Bell describes the garden in Spring as ‘a lovely moment, much more so than the summer and I wish I could paint it.’

Leonard: Created by Sholto Drumlanrig and inspired by a one coloured floral sprig on a hand painted box in the spare bedroom at Charleston.

Bell: Originally created in 1963 by Thalia Perceval and printed at Merton was chosen to emulate the beauty and simplicity of the stencilled paisley wallpaper designed by Vanessa Bell at the end of the war in the garden room.

Charles: Designed by Sholto Drumlanrig, this print is inspired by a checked chair throw in Maynard Keynes’s room.

Woolf: Designed by Allan Thomas in 1977 for the Liberty Fashion Fabrics collection in 1979, the design portrays the dots and square edges of decorated furniture in Vanessa Bell’s bathroom and a large pine cupboard in the studio decorated by Richard Shone in about 1968.

Feeling inspired to get started on your first project? Find the new fabric collection in store on the 3rd floor or shop online here.

Prices are £14 per metre.

12:47 am  •  11 January 2013
Feet Candy…06 January 2013

Let’s rewind to 2006 when these screencaps dominated our world.  Actually in some quarters of the internetz, they still do.  Manolo Blahnik’s frill-edged, tassel-adorned and ribbon-bound creations for Sofia Coppola’s film Marie Antoinette has spawned countless Tumblr/Pinterest/fashion blog posts as well as shoe tributes in the handcrafted world of Etsy.  If not for wearing, they endure as fantastical images to look at, gorge upon and savour as dreamer girl image fodder.  





Even the real shebang - i.e. Marie Antoinette’s actual shoes, inspired fetish of gargantuum proportions when they went to auction recently, with one singular pair fetching EUR50,000.  


These two shoe finds which almost mirror those memorable Coppola screencaps have to be credited to Elle Decor, which I’m now buying for my newly found obsession for all things interior.  They were smart enough t o pick up on this very Italiano collaboration between traditional shoe brand Santoni and the Venetian high-grade fabric manufacturer Rubelli.  Founded in 1858, this well known Venetian brand has been producing the most exquisite fabrics.  This capsule collection of slippers and brogues for both men and women is an ode to a bygone elaborate Venetian baroque style, with the use of traditional lampas floral patterns, as well as nodding to the famed Italian architect Gio Ponti with the velvet pointillist pattern, designer in 1934.  It’s pleasurable to be able to use words like “lampas” - the go-to technique of French shabby chic, achieved by metallic weft threads woven into different weaves on silk satin.  In the pastel triumvirate of baby blue, candy floss pink and pistachio green, it’s a win-win situation for the eyes as well as the feet.  The comparably more subdued Puntaggiato “dotty” fabric designed by Gio Ponti is reserved for the men to get decadent with their footwear.   A few of the styles arecurrently available on Santoni’s online boutique, alongside some limited edition shoe boxes, covered in Rubelli’s famous fabrics.  If you’ve got time to kill, Rubelli’s website is an exhaustive fabric resource where you can search back to designs from the eighties.  The promise of a brilliant physical archive has prompted an idea for a little trip to Venice should time permit.    









Manolo Blahnik is the more obvious go-to shoe designer for the delicate matter of mules, kitten heels and half-slippers but as an alternative, I’m finding these creations by Les Chaussons de la Belle quite charming.  I say “quite charming” with an Austen tone of voice by the way.  They seem to be the fanciful creations of a Giuliana Venerosi Pesciolini, who uses the Italian manufacturer Lanzoni & B to facilitate production.  The references are clear - Fragonard paintings, 18th century belles such as Madame de Pompadour and Georgiana Cavendish, the Duchess of Devonshire and their excessive spending on apparel.  Shapes such as the low-heeled half slippers appear to be derived directly from those 18th century petite chassures.  For the modern feet, they’re just a step further away from the fully enclosed gentlemen’s slippers that have flooded the flats section in the last year or so.  Les Chaussons de la Belle uses silk moirés, cotton jacquards and silks, sourced from - yup, you guessed it -Rubelli.  I’m particularly entranced by the pastel stripes and chintzy Colefax & Fowler-esque florals.  You don’t need me to lay on the hyperboles though when it comes to persuading us of these feet creations.  Pesciolini herself sets a hilarious scene for us to imagine.  If this isn’t a life of leisure, I don’t know what is:

"The point (most important, and often dangerously forgotten!) is feeling beautiful over breakfast. Ladies, how do we want to be remembered… from down? Think sliding with delicious ease into these Watteau-esque boudoir slippers wearing a whisper of silk and lace… A private, awfully chic elegance. Our chaussons and bags follow you from a marriage in Tuscany to glamorous Park Avenue cocktail parties, from tea under the palm trees to a fairy night’s ball. And dinner à deux, of course! Oh yes, men love them."

The shoe designer’s words, not mine. 








7:08 am  •  7 January 2013  •  1 note
rituals and potatoes and advance copies so.

i had a big post planned – about the things i’ve been up to lately. there has been quite lot: speaking at the semi-permanent conferences, visiting leah in tropical tweed heads, a shoot for inside out, ari’s 5th birthday. but of course all those things meant i have been manic, and have barely had a second to sit down. so you might just miss out on that stuff (unless you are on instagram – then you get to see everything). but i will quickly tell you about 2 exhibitions i am involved in in the coming weeks. the first is ‘Rituals’, curated by the ever-busy hungry workshop. all the artists where asked to design masks or faces – here is a sneak preview of my work combined with eirian chapman’s piece:

the exhibition opens on saturday at koskela showrooms in sydney (where the school also resides), and is up until the 7th of october. you can see a flashy preview of some of the work on the hungry workshop blog. (the show is rumoured to be heading to melbourne next).

the second show is at ganim store (61 brunswick st, fitzroy). as part of their upcoming kids week rae has asked 40 artists to customise a mr.potato head doll. they are not for sale, just for fun (which is great!). details below:

and another thing that happended last week. something monumental, something i could not not write about : an advance copy of my book “find and keep” arrived!

i am so happy with it. i can’t wait for it to be out in the big wide world and getting put to good use. it will be in bookstores from the 1st of november. keep an eye out here for some sneak peeks and also melbourne and sydney launch party details.

there you go – i did get to sit down long enough to write something. and as from tomorrow i will have many more opporutnites to sit down. or lie down even. possibly next to a pool, or on a beach, with cocktail in hand. yes – we are going on a holiday. were off to malaysia for some more tropical fun times. i plan to eat and lounge and then eat again. and oh my god do i feel as though i have earned it. see you in two weeks!

Tags: artwork, exhibitions, family, find and keep, holidays!, melbourne
Posted in General | 11 Comments »

(Source: beciorpin.com)

9:53 pm  •  26 December 2012


There really aren’t enough words to describe the way I felt when I saw Kate Moss’ wedding inVogue. With a code name GG - short for The Great Gatsby - coined by Moss herself, the 1920sinspired affair was dreamy and elegant, to say the least. Held at St. Peter’s Church in the Cotswold village of Southrop, the decadent ceremony and reception was attended by the likes of Stella McCartney, Kelly Osbourne, Jude Law, and fellow model Naomi Campbell, just to name a few. 

{Yes, that name tag is for Paul M., as in Paul McCartney. No big deal or anything. Just Paul M.} 
4:28 am  •  6 September 2012



So I was going back through some old posts and I came across this little entry….

[20/12/07 | 11:04am] Today I’m feeling all warm and fuzzy inside. I’m sitting at my desk listening to the storm outside and it makes me smile :-) (see big smiley) Also I’m feeling all inspired by the talented and wonderful people I have met through blogging, thank you (you know who you are).

Anyways it got me thinking back to all the people I have met either online or in real life through blogging. You all have been such an inspiration and I truely appreciate everyone who takes the time to follow and read my blog. Like Morganna, shes been reading my blog since I started…hehe I left the comments from the initial post behind that says she just found me, and she recently met up with my sister to tell her shes still reading my blog!! I was amazed to hear she is still reading along. Mainly because my blog has changed so much since then. Initially I was alot more crafty, but I havent had the time to be very crafty anymore, so I’ve posted alot more about what other people are doing. I’d love to hear from others that have been reading along for awhile, I feel like you have grown with me. Believe me this blog was pretty shabby to start out!!

Or even if your a new blogger comment me so I can read your blog too.

So enough warm and fuzzies, today I have to move furniture..yuk!!!

The collages featured are by Anna Wolf. Read an interview with her on The Drifter and the Gypsy.

(Source: daydreamlily.com)

11:30 pm  •  28 August 2012

Chiaki Moronaga, Coconogacco (Japan) - Ex-winners Mikio Sakabe and Writtenafterwards designer Yoshikazu Yamagata have set up a fashion school in Tokyo called Coconogacco and are gaining momentum with a few of their students coming over to Europe compete.  I wanted to go give Moronaga a big hug after her presentation as she trembled with emotion, saying things like “Fashion is my mother.”  You can chortle at that but you got the feeling Moronaga meant every word.  Her collection was a romantic and unfettered indulgence of all the things Moronaga loves.  More is more and gold is gold.  You could see some veins of Meadham Kirchhoff and John Galliano coursing through the clothes but I doubt Moronaga was conscious of those references.  Whilst technically, the collection wasn’t quite there, you couldn’t help but feel charmed.  


12:21 am  •  18 July 2012
Super Clash http://most-curious.blogspot.co.uk/search?updated-max=2012-02-22T12:01:00Z&max-results=10

Monday, 13 February 2012

I’m not usually one for strong prints in my own wardrobe…black and navy seems to have taken over, but I am loving this MGSM pre-fall 2012 collection.
They Italian label is stocked at both Matches and ASOS, I’m hoping that the sunglasses, dress and coat from first two pics are available…infact I don’t want to wait til after Summer, can I just get them now?!

12:29 am  •  8 June 2012

i’m still in new york city — and what a gorgeous day it was here yesterday! but today, two of my favorite taste makers neville trickett and his lovely daughter Sara are dropping in to share some paisleys and pastel. Neville and sara live in south africa — i shared their home here, and sara runs the beautiful blog it’s what i’m into. i’m so happy to share their great taste here today! some beautiful paisleys, and oh, how about that hair?

Images: one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten.

• All paisley prints are from this book, 1960s Paisley Prints.

11:10 pm  •  19 May 2012