Amelia’s Magazine | New Designers 2013 Jewellery: The Best Graduate Designers

Annie Lucilla wearing her etched earrings
New Designers show 2013-Annabelle Lucilla
I always discover a huge number of brilliant new jewellery designers at the New Designers exhibition, and this year was no exception. Firstly, at the One Year On section I was blown away by a wonderful display from Annabelle Lucilla, who recognised me from twitter – always a strange but rather lovely thing when it happens! This multiple award winning jewellery designer is currently a resident of Cockpit Arts, thanks to a recent bursary. I love the way that she uses her own illustrations to create unique statement pieces; here she is wearing a pair of her beautiful etched dangly earrings in front of an illustration that features in one of her pieces.

Silicone jewels by Isabelle Busnell in oneyearon
I was also drawn to this beautiful display by Isabelle Busnell, who recreates traditional designs such as cameos in deceptively flexible silicone.

beaded knitted fringed necklaces by HannaBalloo
At Central Saint Martins Hannah Newell, who designs under the name Hanna Baloo, created these immensely cute beaded, knitted and fringed necklaces featuring ghostly letters.

Simona Kubertavivacuite - jewellery
New Designers show 2013-Simona Kubertaviciute
This year there were were loads of designs inspired by lifeforms found in the oceans, which seems to be an ongoing trend in jewellery. Simona Kubertaviciute from Bucks New University was inspired by sea creatures that overtake shipwrecks and other underwater manmade structures. She works with brass and Fimo to create peculiarly shaped gems that look oxidised and eroded, as if they have indeed just been hauled out of the ocean.

New Designers show 2013-clio may davies
I’m a sucker for a good dangly earring, and love these organic offerings from the Crustacean Collection by Clio May Davies, a graduate of UCA Rochester.

New Designers show 2013-alma sophia
Alma Sophia was inspired by the tactile feel of jewellery to create her Touch ring collection, which come with convex or concave fronts that are meant to be explored by the thumb.

New Designers show 2013-Kirsty Isla Nicholson oversized rings
Giant white chocolate pearls by Kirsty Isla Nicholson
At the University of Dundee Kirsty Isla Nicholson had created an extremely imaginative collection working in unorthodox materials and unexpected scales: giant white chocolate pearls and oversized rings inspired by the construction of earring backs and jewellery boxes were particularly clever. Her beautifully made 187 rings wall installation asked visitors to donate to the Cystic Fibrosis Trust in exchange for a ring.

New Designers show 2013 fay mcglashan
Fay McGlashan worked in porcelain and metal to create large pendants that mimic the carapaces of mottled and ridged insects.

New Designers show 2013-Mirka Janeckova
The deepwater inspiration continued with the White Collection from Mirka Janeckova, featuring rings that seemed to sprout like exotic corals in all directions.

Oversized gold flock ring by Nadia Deen
This oversized Alien gold and brass flock ring was made by Nadia Deen at The Cass.

Olivia Creber beard jewellery for men
Edinburgh College of Art graduate Olivia Creber‘s Veni, Veci beard jewellery for men was used to style an award winning catwalk show earlier this year. These certainly make an unusual and eye-catching accessory that push the traditional definition of jewellery, so it’s no surprise to discover that she begins an MA at the Royal College of Art this year.

New Designers show 2013-Caitlin Gregory-Thomas
New Designers show 2013-Caitlin Gregory-Thomas flock pins
At the well appointed stand for the Jewellery Futures course in Birmingham Caitlin Gregory-Thomas was inspired by the plight of dairy cows to create this highly unusual collection of pins and bracelets in metal and flock. The centrepiece is a jelly mould character with cow hooves, guaranteed to prompt questions of the wearer. Check out CVGT Jewellery here.

Rosalind Clara Bryan
Over in the stands supporting different disciplines I discovered Rosalind Clara Bryan‘s delicate geometric collection, which is supported by a super professional website.

Karl Robert Gundstrom
On a more conceptual front Karl Robert Gundstrom put together this beautiful display of jewellery made with expanding foam. He will be pursuing his fine art career in Berlin.

I’ve still got 3D wall art, ricrac madness, ceramics and crafts to cover… and that’s just from the first New Designers exhibition…

*Many of these images first appeared on my instagram feed, where you can view my pick of design graduates as I find them.*

Categories ,187 rings, ,2013, ,Alien, ,Alma Sophia, ,Annabelle Lucilla, ,Birmingham, ,Bucks New University, ,Caitlin Gregory-Thomas, ,Central Saint Martins, ,Clio May Davies, ,Cockpit Arts, ,Crustacean Collection, ,CVGT Jewellery, ,Cystic Fibrosis Trust, ,Edinburgh College of Art, ,Fay McGlashan, ,Fimo, ,Hanna Baloo, ,Hannah Newell, ,Isabelle Busnell, ,jewellery, ,Jewellery Futures, ,Karl Robert Gundstrom, ,Kirsty Isla Nicholson, ,Mirka Janeckova, ,Nadia Deen, ,New Designers, ,Olivia Creber, ,One Year On, ,review, ,Rosalind Clara Bryan, ,Royal College of Art, ,Simona Kubertaviciute, ,The Cass, ,Touch, ,UCA Rochester, ,University of Dundee, ,Veni Veci, ,White Collection

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Amelia’s Magazine | London Fashion Week AW15 Exhibition Stands Report: Jewellery

Imogen Belfield jurassic ring
After nearly 20 years of attending London Fashion Week and supporting emerging designers the British Fashion Council denied me a press pass for the exhibition stands because I forgot to register online (it went to spam mail). After conferring with a manager upstairs I was told that my website was ‘not influential enough’ to warrant a pass and I should reapply next season, which is pretty galling given the amount of time I have spent promoting designers in Amelia’s Magazine over the past decade, many at the start of their careers. The only way I was allowed in was to drag a designer out from the stands so that I could be allocated a plastic wrist band as a visiting friend. Thanks for the show of appreciation for all my hard work BFC!

Jewellery has become a major fixture at the exhibition stands, so there is loads to report on. Read on if you love jewels as much as I do.

Imogen Belfield
Much gratitude to the lovely Imogen Belfield for leaving her stand in the Rock Vault to sort me out with an exhibition pass. Her new collection is amazing as ever, featuring rough diamonds, black diamonds and an array of new fine metals as well as solid gold pieces designed to appeal to her Far Eastern markets. Her chunky Jurassic ring (at the top) is chock full of rough diamonds. Yum yum! Read my first interview with Imogen Belfield here, we’ll be doing a catch up Q&A soon.

Alice Cicolini
This season Alice Cicolini (read more in this round up here) showcased a concise new collection named Summer Snow, featuring fine quartz crystals which spin on the inside and outside, with precious gems such as tourmaline and sapphire in the centres. So different and beautiful.

Ornella Ianuzzi
Also in the Rock Vault I was wowed by jewellery from Ornella Iannuzzi for the first time. These opal cage earrings feature a beautiful round gemstone that rolls around inside a gold shape inspired by the Platonic Solids. Find out more about Ornella in my upcoming interview.

Goddess Aviator goddess aviator
This gigantic Goddess Aviator showpiece by art jewellers Yunus and Eliza is not for the faint hearted! What an awesome piece.

Shimell and Madden
We first met Shimell and Madden way back in 2011, so it was nice to see them now doing so well – I love the new collection, featuring these unusual cabochon garnets and finely set diamonds.

This is what they do! Stratus rain earrings dancing away at Rock Vault

A video posted by Jo Hayes Ward (@johayesward) on

Jo Hayes-Ward has not let a new baby get in the way of her prolific output, first profiled in Amelia’s Magazine in 2010 – creating swathes of new designs in her signature building block style. An inspiration to us all! These earrings dance so beautifully, as shown in her video. Just imagine them in the ear! Magnificent.

Beth Gilmour
Beth Gilmour is a Cockpit Arts based designer, I absolutely adore her Dichroma Collection, featuring bi coloured gemstones set in similarly toned metals.

Lily Kamper
Lily Kamper enamel pendants
Moving on to other rooms… Lily Kamper has also been busy creating a vast new collection, including this glorious pendant in her colourful Art Deco style. Also new for this season are new abstract enamel initial pendants, which she began sketching out last season.

Kattri pendant
This bold pendant comes from the new Assymetry collection by Kattri – find out more about designer Amanda Gerbasi in my recent interview here.

Ruifier face pendants
So sweet and unusual: these gem face pendants are by Ruifier, which is the new jewellery brand from Central Saint Martins graduate Rachel Shaw. Her distinct pieces feature precious gems in layerable designs that marry wit with luxury.

Alighieri is Dante inspired jewellery from Oxford University graduate Rosh Mahtani, who set up her brand in 2013 with no formal training but a burning desire to translate her love of literature into jewels.

Eshvi bracelet
This bracelet by Eshvi showcases the brand’s individual aesthetic, featuring chunky resin shapes in bold designs.

Brooke Gregson constellation pendants
Brooke Gregson is another designer who is new to me. The American designer works with some fabulous boulder opals and her Astrology collection is such a unique and wonderful idea.

Ros Millar rings
These gothic rings are from Ros Millar, also based in the Cockpit Arts studio, and whose work I admired a few years ago at the Treasure Jewellery Show.

Kirsty Ward
Kirsty Ward necklace
It’s always a joy to catch up with Kirsty Ward, especially since she hasn’t show at London Fashion Week for a few seasons. As well as churning out a full collection of clothing her jewellery range has also grown hugely since she first started out with Fashion Scout. I absolutely adore her unique statement pieces.

Only Child necklace
Over with Black PR I discovered these serious druzies on a chunky gold chain by Only Child.

Gina Melosi
Designer Gina Melosi (discovered last year at the Off Strand showcase) specialises in ethical jewellery, creating distinctive looks such as this raw beehive geometric design on a necklace.

More from the stands soon…

Categories ,Alice Cicolini, ,Alighieri, ,Amanda Gerbasi, ,Assymetry, ,Astrology, ,AW15, ,Beth Gilmour, ,Black PR, ,british fashion council, ,Brooke Gregson, ,Central Saint Martins, ,Cockpit Arts, ,Dichroma Collection, ,Eshvi, ,Exhibition Stands Report, ,Fashion Scout, ,Fine Jewellery, ,Gina Melosi, ,Goddess Aviator, ,Imogen Belfield, ,jewellery, ,Jo Hayes-Ward, ,Jurassic, ,Kattri, ,Kirsty Ward, ,Lily Kamper, ,London Fashion Week, ,Millar, ,Off Strand, ,Only Child, ,Ornella Iannuzzi, ,Oxford University, ,Platonic Solids, ,Rachel Shaw, ,Rock Vault, ,Rosh Mahtani, ,Ruifier, ,Shimell and Madden, ,Summer Snow, ,Treasure Jewellery Show, ,Yunus and Eliza

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Amelia’s Magazine | Inspired by Illustration: An interview with jewellery designer Annabelle Lucilla

Annabelle Lucilla by Laura Hickman
Annabelle Lucilla by Laura Hickman.

I first ran across the beautiful illustrated etched designs of Annabelle Lucilla at the One Year On exhibition at New Designers 2013, and her work instantly caught my eye. When it turned out that she knew me from using social media an instant rapport was born. Here Annabelle talks us through her inspiration and design process: and explains why you must never underestimate the power of online networking in building your career in the creative industries.

Annabelle Lucilla hovering hummingbird design
Annabelle Lucilla: hovering hummingbird design.

When did you start to combine your love of illustration and jewellery to create ‘Metallic Graphics’, and how did it all start out?
I have always drawn intricately; my mum is an illustrator so I acquire that from her. I started to create jewellery when I was around 13, but I didn’t combine these two techniques until I was in my 2nd year of my Jewellery and Silversmithing degree. I initially set out to study Surface Pattern design at London College of Fashion. However, I felt like I could always come back to textile design, after I had learnt a technical skill that would set me apart from others. Discovering etching was a ‘bingo’ moment for me as I was always chasing after the idea of making an illustration into a wearable, permanent object, which had character and form. My Illustrations started out as large ‘motif’ stories, and then I created certain singular characters to go in the story. They are based around mythical tales, ancient cultures and lands and symbolism.

Annabelle Lucilla Jewellery by Daniel Alexander
Annabelle Lucilla Jewellery by Daniel Alexander.

What was the best thing about studying at Sir John Cass?
I very much enjoyed my 3 years of study at the Cass, especially being able to explore a wide range of processes and techniques. Most of all I was allowed to find my niche aesthetic, as many find that difficult when producing their final degree collection. I was quite sure about what I wanted my collection to look like, as well as what techniques I wanted to combine. I was given the opportunity to take part in a range of competitions and selling opportunities which helped me learn about creating a commercial collection. I also worked with a wide range of materials and finishes, such as resin, horn, aluminium, leather, rubber, powder coating, anodizing and not forgetting etching!

Annabelle Lucilla Jewellery, Peacock necklace
Can you tell us more about the inspiration behind your first major collection?
My debut collection, Oriental Embodiments is very decadent, yet classical. There are definite hints of Ancient Grecian and Indian patternation and form. I got a lot of inspiration from looking at Indian bodily adornment, and how they decorate every part of their bodies in jewels and chains and droplets. I wanted to reinvent some traditional techniques such as Filigree and stone setting, and so I contemporized and refined them to give them a modern feel. The collection features etched, hollow Peacocks, which originate from my hand drawn illustration. This was the connection to India, and they have a very regal, majestic aura, which I wanted the collection to reflect. I juxtaposed these curvilinear forms with geometric forms to give a sense of balance and modernity.

Annabelle Lucilla Jewellery by Zo Bevan
Annabelle Lucilla Jewellery by Zo Bevan.

How do you envisage your jewellery been worn?
The purpose of my debut commercial collection was to give the consumer a more wearable version of the large, decadent items I made for my degree collection. I want my jewellery to be worn as everyday staple accessories, with an added hint of glamour and luxury. The designs I created were envisaged to be worn by all ages, not one particular group of people. The collection consists of some classical, dainty earrings, large statement necklaces and cool, contemporary rings and bracelets.

Annabelle Lucilla Jewllery, Gold Oriental Peacock Earrings
What did you learn on the Crafts Council Hot House programme?
This programme was an amazing experience. Subjects ranged from making a business plan to pricing your product correctly. From learning about how to plan financially for the year ahead, to learning about what your work is all about and then in turn who your target market is. What was helpful was that it was spread over 6 months, and tailored directly to your specific practice. You could improve your business as the course progressed. I met so many wonderful people, and having my Hot House ‘Buddy’ Imogen Belfield was so much help, as I could have regular meetings to go over aspects of my business. Overall, it is a programme I would wholly recommend to anyone wanting to start or improve their business.

Annabelle Lucilla by Annabel Dover
Annabelle Lucilla by Annabel Dover.

Which other creatives do you recommend we should check out?
I would recommend people to take a look at Sophie Harley’s jewellery. She is someone I admire greatly, and who creates exquisite, storytale pieces. I love that there is real meaning behind her designs, and people always connect with her designs for this reason.

Oriental Peacock Earrings Annabelle Lucilla Hastings
What is it like working at Cockpit Arts?
Cockpit Arts is a fantastic collection of designers and makers. Being part of a large community makes you feel like there is always someone to help you if you need advice. It is a wonderful start for me as I only launched my business in January 2013, and the collection was finished in April and so having a professional studio to go to and work makes all the difference when you want to be taken seriously with your profession. The Open Studios in June and November are great selling opportunities, as the public is brought to you, and they are fascinated to see the designers in their working studios.

Annabelle Lucilla Jewllery Silver Oriental Peacock Necklace
You’ve already done extremely well; securing loads of awards and bursaries in a very short time period. What are your top tips for gaining recognition as a new independent jeweller?
I would recommend entering lots of design competitions, and to try and be part of larger organisations, as these can help spread your name for you. Nothing happens instantly, but collectively, each achievement will help people recognise your brand. Social media platforms are also great for reaching a wider audience, so plan to tweet or share news on facebook everyday, as regular comments and posts help more people find you. Also, Social Media is what it is, ‘Social’ so interact with people, and make connections. Lastly, be original, and find your unique selling point that will keep your designs fresh and instinctively associated with your brand.

Annabelle Lucilla Jewllery Purple Agate Necklace with tassels
What next?
I am very much looking forward to exhibiting at International Jewellery London this week, which will officially launch my debut collection. This is the largest show I have done so far, so it will be good to show my collection to such a wide range of retailers, buyers and stockists from the U.K. and abroad. I am launching a few new etched designs in late September, so keep a look out for that. I am also showing at London Fashion Week as part of a collective with one of my online stockists, Wonsuponatime, which I am very much looking forward to. I am also taking on a few more established online stockists in the next few months. Christmas is going to be busy, with the Cockpit Arts Open Studios in November. I will also be exhibiting as part of an exciting curated exhibition about ‘the diverse and eclectic cultural influences present within the British craft scene‘ in the new year.

Categories ,Ancient Grecian, ,Annabel Dover, ,Annabelle Lucilla, ,Cockpit Arts, ,Crafts Council, ,Daniel Alexander, ,Filigree, ,Hot House, ,Imogen Belfield, ,Indian, ,International Jewellery London, ,interview, ,jewellery, ,Jewellery and Silversmithing, ,Laura Hickman, ,London College of Fashion, ,London Fashion Week, ,Metallic Graphics, ,New Designers, ,One Year On, ,Open Studios, ,Oriental Embodiments, ,Peacocks, ,Sir John Cass School of Art, ,Social Media, ,Sophie Harley, ,Surface Pattern, ,Wonsuponatime, ,Zo Bevan

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Amelia’s Magazine | Christmas Gift Ideas 2013: Babies and Toddlers

Slugs and Snails tights for boys blue

Slugs and Snails tights for boys.

So, what do you do if you need to buy something for the little person in your life at Christmas? We buy very few new clothes for Snarfle (and are very grateful for the many hand me downs that he wears) but when we do buy new we often buy from smaller independent designers who create unique looks that you will not find on the high street. These wonderful pieces are more often that not designed with love by someone who is a mum themselves. They know what little people like, and they create with passion.

Mini Magpie London upcycled wool gilet

Mini Magpie clothes are all created from upcycled adult garments by mum Kimberley. I am particularly hankering after this little knitted waistcoat that is adorned with plentiful pompoms… but do take a look at all her clothing for little ones… such cute stuff, including little denim jackets, leggings and much more.

Slugs and Snails tights for boys

It is no secret that Snarfle lives in his Slugs and Snails patterned tights (see my instagram feed). After a summer off (during which he grew out of his last selection) I literally don’t know what we would do without them during the cold weather. Nothing is as snug and cosy as tights – socks always seem to crumple off in little deposits all over the house to leave behind freezing cold tootsies (not that he seems to mind, they bother me a lot more). I was a bit worried about how he might ‘style’ them (don’t laugh) now he is a fully grown walking mini person, but actually they look bloody great under baggy pants, or peeking out from under leggings (which he also lives in, most of ours come from Oh Baby London). My new favourite design is Storm, featuring clouds and rainbows on a steely grey background. Utterly fab: these really are the best gift you can give a little one, boy or girl. You can read my interview with creator Kathleen Redmond here, she’s an inspiration to all us mums.

The Bright Company - Knapp Blanket for babies

When Snarfle was smaller he was always tucked up (in our bed) inside a sleeping bag. How did we ever manage back in the old days, before these genius inventions? Ours were all second hand, but if I was looking for a very sweet and unique version I’d go for one by The Bright Company, all handmade and printed in the UK. Their Kipp Sleeping Bag for £38 is covered in a very retro modern hexagon design in their signature bright blue and orange colour way. Or how about the Knapp Blanket for £30 in unisex colour ways, a great gift for little people that can be used to swaddle them in the Moses basket (if yours will sleep in one that is, our basket was passed on very quickly) or to keep them warm in a buggy or in the carrier. Later on it could even become a fantastic den maker!

Day Job Katie Johnston hobby horse toys

Hankering after a toy that’s not garish and over the top, that will allow your child’s imagination to run free for many years to come? Then why not consider a Hobby Horse. These ones are by Katie Johnston of the Day Job collective, and come in a host of possible colours. You choose! It’s just like the good ol’ days…

The Baltic Baby Leggings by Modéerska Huset

Kyna Boutique specialises in organic children’s clothing and many of the brands are sourced from Scandinavia, which seems to specialise in the kind of bold patterned clothing that I love so much but which English designers shy away from. I really like The Baltic Baby Bodysuit and Leggings by Modéerska Huset, covered in islands, ferries, waves and swans. Swedish designer Jenny Modéer works in a slightly more subtle but nonetheless unusual colour palette. Kyna Boutique offers free delivery within the UK, and free returns too!

Ruff and Huddle varsity jacket with zakee shariff

Ruff & Huddle has had a super busy year, with successful launches in Selfridges and great press all over the place. Their collaboration with ace illustrator Zakee Shariff has produced some wonderful clothing, and I am particularly in love with this London Varsity jacket that has ROAR embroidered on the front and a lion on the back (see left in the photo above). Why should the Americans have all the fun? At £50 it’s a considered purchase, but one that is bound to be a practical favourite with your little one.

Sian Zeng - Blue duvet set and sew your own bear

Sian Zeng is a Cockpit Arts based designer who creates a variety of objects and homeware items that span the generations. Her classic bespectacled Office Bear comes as a kit you sew up yourself for £25, and here they are seen in a variety of colour ways lounging against a duvet set, also designed by Sian. Snarfle has one of these, but it did have to be sewn up by an adult (his dad!) – so this is a fun gift that could kill two birds with one stone (so to speak).

Lil Beans red baby fringe moccasin booties

Lil’ Beans is a new online kidswear retailer that was set up with the aim of selling brands that offer high quality design, uniqueness, comfort and durability. Due to their American connections they have also brought some lesser known brands to these shores and I am just a little bit in love with these adorable red fringed moccasins for babies for £35. Adorable. Also look out for their Thrifted section, featuring second hand loveliness for bargain prices.

Lastly, I’ll be bringing you my ideas for the prettiest and most unusual homemade decorations that I’ve found on my travels around the web. Here’s hoping that I get time to make a few myself as well.

Categories ,2013, ,Babies, ,Babywear, ,Christmas, ,Cockpit Arts, ,Day Job, ,gifts, ,Hobby Horse, ,Jenny Modéer, ,Kathleen Redmond, ,Katie Johnston, ,Kipp Sleeping Bag, ,Knapp Blanket, ,Kyna Boutique, ,Leggings, ,Lil’ Beans, ,London Varsity jacket, ,Mini Magpie, ,Modéerska Huset, ,Office Bear, ,Oh Baby London, ,Ruff & Huddle, ,Sian Zeng, ,Slugs and Snails, ,Snarfle, ,Storm, ,TBC, ,The Baltic Baby Bodysuit, ,The Bright Company, ,Thrifted, ,Toddlers, ,Zakee Shariff

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Amelia’s Magazine | Christmas Gift Ideas 2013: Fashion

Snowy Owl scarf by Nkoyo

Snowy Owl scarf by Nkoyo.

In the first of my Christmas gift round ups I give you the best ideas for lovers of bespoke high end fashion from a selection of talented up and coming designers. All of them will be selling on my new website when it launches in the New Year, but in the meantime you can buy from their own websites, I do hope you will support them and buy your loved one something special to treasure for years to come (or perhaps hint to your loved one what you would like…) Here are my recommended picks: be quick, Christmas is not far off now.

Ever Rêve - Vida dress

The Vida Dress by Ever Rêve features a stunning geometric print in soft flowing silk crepe de chine. Michelle Urvall-Nyren developed her trademark patterns through a fascination with her grandmother’s batik dresses, and I love the way she mixes strong lines with flattering shapes. Order yours for a bargain £175 quick! Read more about Ever Rêve here.

Nkoyo snowy owl silk scarf

If you are looking for an accessory rather than a garment how about an illustrated piece from Nkoyo? I am just a little bit in love with this Snowy Owl scarf which comes in a cosy winter mix of wool lawn and silk with a fringed edge, and is yours for just £120. Read more about Nkoyo in this interview with designer Alice Nyong.

Jano_Jumper_Anna Popovitch

The Jano silk jersey jumper by Anna Popovich has a luxe lace sleeve detail and makes perfect winter wear for lovers of all things bespoke and beautiful. Order it now for a reduced price of £195 until January, and with free shipping in the UK. In fact the whole collection is beautiful, so I urge you to check it out. I will be interviewing Anna Popovich soon.

Beautiful Soul AW13-Mi Playsuit

Beautiful Soul is offering free worldwide delivery up until Christmas. I recommend the cute and sexy Mi Playsuit which comes in silk georgette in the Ladybird Black statement print of big blossomy hydrangeas. The plunging neckline means it can be dressed up or down for day to night wear: what a stunning outfit for a loved one. It costs £360 here. Read more about designer Nicola Woods in this interview from 2012.

Vita Gottlieb lizard scarf

Finally, Vita Gottlieb‘s Lizard scarf comes in a subtle beige and brown colour and features a hand painted watercolour design that is printed in Como, Italy. Como is the centre of printed textiles in Italy where I spent 3 months working in a small studio during my degree (random fact). This scarf comes in a micromodal wool mix so it can be worn in all seasons, and costs £195. Read my recent interview with Vita Gottlieb here.

Next up, my recommended jewellery gift ideas. Stay tuned!

Categories ,Alice Nyong, ,Anna Popovitch, ,Beautiful Soul, ,Como, ,Ever Rêve, ,Everreve, ,Italy, ,Jano silk jersey jumper, ,Ladybird Black, ,Lizard scarf, ,Mi Playsuit, ,Michelle Urvall Nyrén, ,Nicola Woods, ,Nkoyo, ,Snowy Owl, ,Vida Dress, ,Vita Gottlieb

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Amelia’s Magazine | Christmas Gifts: Ethical Fashion and Skincare Ideas

I have no idea how this fella’s haircut works. I don’t know what bit of hair is attached to what bit of scalp. But I do know that you and I and the whole of London will soon be sporting this very style upon our heads because this… chap… is… the guy from… DD/MM/YYYY, search and those guys play music better than other people.

DD/MM/YYYY at Old Blue Last

They also write music that is pretty much unreviewable. It’s not that they don’t ever sound like any other band, erectile but when you do clutch at a glimmer of sound overlap, that’s not where these mighty Canadians are coming from.
So here is a list of the irrelevant comparisons I thought I could hear: Deerhoof, but less songy. Battles, but more songy. Early Foals, but tighter and more complex. Six Finger Satellite, but less clownish. Boards Of Canada, blatantly… for about three seconds. Tortoise with charisma. Perry Farrell in the bath. Squarepusher with the munchies. Forward Russia having attacks of Chik Budo. Zoogz Rift puppeteering Purple Stag on the grave of Truly. Gong molesting The Mars Volta for the amusement of King Crimson.

DD/MM/YYYY at Old Blue Last

All of it completely irrelevant since, as I had been warned, DD/MM/YYYY have a “no-style” approach to music-craft. I didn’t believe it, but it’s not far off as a description. The one idea I did have which stuck was that the whole band was synchro-hallucinating Frank Zappa wielding conductor’s baton above the audience’s heads. And they have practised really hard for a million years. In the rhythm of N/N. Most of these songs seem to exist to prove how bouncably groovy any time signature can be. Higher maths. One tune calculated Pi to 1000000 decimal places. But it comes out more as autistic space-jazz than math rock. Almost every song is rhythm-based, there are no solos, not too many motifs even, just additions to the groove, and instrument-interplay key-changes. The drums dominate, followed by guitar detail and big fat synths. Solid basslines and the variety-guy (sax/spare snare and beaten-up crash cymbal) fill the rest of the space, with cartoonish zero-ego vocals sitting on top..
Enough analysis. How did I feel? Did it work? Well… I felt entranced. It worked stunningly well. Nobody knows what any of the songs were supposed to be about, but I was so deeply cuddled up in their slipper of sound, and amazed by how thoroughly well they chugged. There was no attempt to tug at a emotional heartstring, just to uplift your tantric verve with hypno-intensity and complex brain-shuffling. Like I said, they’re nearly unreviewable. Go and listen to them.

Hymns at Old Blue Last

Support on the night came from two equally noisy but quite different sources. Hymns are a very sharp two-piece (guitarist vs. drummer) from the midlands. Without any notion of enjoying themselves, they martyred themselves upon their instruments, in precise fits of religious agony. “More bile, please” chanted one reveller as a song came to an end. “May the Lord have mercy on your soul” came the answer for the next three minutes. These beautiful, but perfectly serious, joyless songs of Apocalypse rely on the vocals of the guitarist, who screams as convincingly and genuinely as I ever heard. He surely watches the Exorcist every night. No smile or thank you after a song, just a swig of beer and twang-brap-”Wrrrrraugh!” again. Well worth a pilgrimage to get preached at with enough vitriol to fuel a thousand Death Metal acts.

Hymns at Old Blue Last

Opening the night were Part Dinosaur, who are insanely ambitious and courageous, winning them my coveted “one-to-watch” medal. If you, like me, feel a deep sense of loss at the passing of Youthmovies, perhaps you used to be in Youthmovies or were touched by the music they made, you will want to follow the trajectory of Part Dinosaur. It’s the same approach to rocking out with neglected time signatures, dynamic changes and instruments filling each others’ gaps. I’ll review them properly someday. It wouldn’t be fair now, as they were a man down, and were a little plagued by techie trouble (an out-of-tune guitar/a broken monitor failing to guide a vocal part). But I will come back for them, and I know it will be good. A first-rate drummer commands the other fellas through a strangely sensitive landscape of out-of-nowhere jolty emotion. Attention to detail and a very obvious excitable rapture in playing interlocking segments of thrilling musical action define a band that is part dinosaur, part hope, all rock!

Part Dinosaur at Old Blue Last

Illustration by Timothy Hunt
Illustration by Timothy Hunt.

A couple of days ago *ahem, ask more like a week* I put a callout on twitter for people to send me their fabulous ideas for Christmas presents – here, finally is a round up of the best clothing and skincare gifts alongside some of my own recommendations. My second post will cover art, homewares and jewellery.

Bonbi Forest equus scarf

Lee May Foster of Bonbi Forest never fails to produce delightful stuff, my current favourite of which is this stunning Equus scarf, new just in time for Crimbo. It comes in either a pink or blue colour way and will certainly catch people’s attention with it’s lovely sustainably handprinted pattern of horses and zebras.

Natasha Rae Richardson hankie

At the upper end of the market check out this rabbit skeleton organic cotton hankie from Natalie Rae Richardson at Tout Nouveau, a website which offers the work of some fantastic emerging designers – perfect for a super stylish man to flourish when out and about.

Natasha Wood cardigan

I wish I had discovered ethical clothing designer Natasha Wood in time to include her in my book… but alas it is too late. These upcycled leather trousers are made from old leather jackets and above is her special two cardigans coatigan. Just fab.

Bradley Beanie Hat and Bow Brook Top by Maria del Carmen Smith
Bradley Beanie Hat and Bow Brook Top by Maria del Carmen Smith.

Continuing on an ethical clothing bent I really do love the simple good designs of Liv. I’ve been wearing her delightful Bow Brook top non stop this winter, and her Bradley knitted beanie is oh so cute. Liv works exclusively in fairtrade and organic materials. Better still she is running a wee Christmas competition – just join her on Facebook for the chance to win a lovely Shell Ford Cardi in her Berrrry Christmas competition. (but make sure you do it this morning as the offer ends at noon today)

Dr Hauschka bath care kit interior
Dr Hauschka bath care kit

Over on the beauty gift set side of life I recommend the Dr. Hauschka bath oils set – I am a real sucker for a hot steaming sweetly smelling bath and these smell just divine. A Bath Care Kit contains small starter versions of the oils and costs just £12.50. What a blooming’ bargain for the bath lover in your life. Dr. Hauschka is running a similar chance for a Facebook fan to win a beautiful make up set. Just join their Facebook page before noon.

Dr Hauschka rose tea

Many of Dr. Hauschka’s lotions make use of the wondrous properties of rose, and I particularly like the Rose Body Hamper Body Moisturiser Gift Set, which includes Organic Loose Tea with Rose Petals – since I started drinking black tea on it’s own I’ve discovered that rose tea is absolutely my favourite, yet it is still relatively hard to come by in your average supermarket, making this gift all the more special.

Pai serenity kit

As you can probably tell I am a big fan of a long luxurious bath, especially in this cold weather. Pai Skincare is another fabulous organic brand that has produced a bath care kit – and the Serenity Bath and Body Collection will go down a treat with anyone like me.

Savonnerie-Naughty Weekend Kit

For the lover in your life, there’s always the Savonnerie Ever So Slightly Naughty Weekend Kit. Why wait for the wedding anniversary or Valentine’s Day when you can drop a ginormous hint at Christmas? This boxed kit includes yummy Love Soak bath bits, Vetiver massage oil, a tender kissing glaze… and a blindfold and feather for a truly erotic experience. All this pleasure for both you and the recipient comes at a very reasonable price.


Savonnerie specialises in high end hand made soaps encrusted with all sorts of delicious goodies, and their beautifully packaged luxury handmade soap box makes the perfect gift. They are based over in Brushfield Street near Spitalfields Market so if you live in London there is still plenty of time to go and visit them. Yum yum yum.

For fans of yummy skincare products there are plenty more Christmas gift suggestions in some of my previous blog posts about ethical beauty brands, so do go check them out. And you can check out the companion blog to this one, featuring art, jewellery and homeware ideas, right here. My best art books round up can be found here.

Categories ,Beauty, ,Bonbi Forest, ,Bow Brook Top, ,Bradley Beanie, ,Brushfield Street, ,Dr. Hauschka Bath Care Kit, ,Dr.Hauschka, ,ethical, ,Ever So Slightly Naughty Weekend Kit, ,fairtrade, ,fashion, ,Fickle Fate, ,Lee May Foster, ,Liv, ,Luxury, ,Maria del Carmen Smith, ,Natalie Rae Richardson, ,Natasha Wood, ,organic, ,Organic Loose Tea with Rose Petals, ,Pai Skincare, ,Rose Body Hamper Body Moisturiser Gift Set, ,Rose Petal Tea, ,Savonnerie, ,Serenity Bath and Body Collection, ,Shell Ford Cardi, ,Skincare, ,spitalfields, ,Timothy Hunt, ,Tout Nouveau, ,Upcycling

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Amelia’s Magazine | Coco

The eponymous release from New York based The Pains of Being Pure at Heart has everything you could want from a summer album. A certain been-in-the-sun-too-long hazy-headyness without the too-much-ice-cream sugariness of many indie-pop summer albums. No-No! I’m rallying for The Pains of Being Pure at Heart being trail-blazers for a new genre we shall call ‘Sandalgaze” aka Shoegaze for when it’s not raining out.


From the rip-roaring opener ‘Contender’, buy more about the album manages to be catchy without being twee, shop noise without being dreary, imagine My Bloody Valentine on a beach doo-wopping and you’re halfway there.
Whilst treading this line The Pains of Being Pure at Heart consistently avoid being schmaltzy. The track; Young Adult Friction is danceable, its lyrics of a whimsy worthy of Stuart Murdoch yet reflect on themes like first love with a sort of yearning nostalgia, again souring the sweetness. Here the oft-overdone boy/girl singing duo is slightly off-kilter and the effect is more reminiscent of early Yo La Tengo or Jesus and Mary Chain than Belle & Sebastian.


The Pains of Being Pure of Heart is definitely tinged with nods towards the 80s and early 90s,yet it is perhaps too easy to criticise the album for this. The band manage to utilise certain stylistic tropes without being too retrospective or shallow.
In fact The Pains of Being Pure at Heart is refreshing in it’s redefinition of certain preconceptions: summer isn’t all about whistling and tambourine jangling anymore and Shoegaze is reinterpreted with a sunny touch rather like enjoying a 99 flake with Kevin Shields!

The album ‘The Pains of Being Pure at Heart’ is available now and the single ‘Young Adult Friction’ is released on 18th May (Fortuna Pop!)
They play The Lexington, London on 15th May

Kitsuné has really got its groove on this time. Left eyebrows are often tilted to a 74-degree angle at the mention of a Parisian fashion boutique that puts out compilation CDs, symptoms amongst other music releases. At first, tadalafil you kind of expect endless Dimitri From Paris types churning out catwalk-flavoured lint, but Kitsuné really knows what it is getting, and won’t be holding onto the receipt. With utter confidence and bravado, you see, it was Kitsuné that released Wolfmother’s ball-busting old-metal limited edition EP. Benetton scratches its head in confusion.
For all that, Compilation 7 is a danceable disc, with lots of European disco-beats, and plenty of fruity basslines in the Frenchified Electro style. But it’s not the kind of thoughtless, juvenile poppy end of it. You won’t hear anything approaching “Lady, give me tonight, cos my feeling is just so right”, since the Maison-people (Maisonettes?) are clued up. They listen to Tangerine Dream and Elvis Costello, and anything they select from the here and now is selected with a certainty that reminds me of the chap who picks the leaves for PG Tips: He just knows where the good stuff’s at.
Highpoints include Chateau Marmont’s Beagle, filled with synths fresh from Tomorrow’s World demonstrations, sidewinding through arpeggiated chords, with the occasional crash-bang with a wooden spoon by the stove, and Beni’s Fringe Element, which popcorns along with hi-hats before going to a thoroughly spiffing hiatus of slap bass with one of the squidgiest, wiggly-wormiest synth solos since Mr.Scruff’s Shrimp. Probably the most exciting track here is Crystal Fighters’ (above) Xtatic Truth, a journey involving Epic-Ragga-Happy-Hardcore, hints of Chinese Folk, and a choir of the ether.
But it’s a plentiful CD. There are nineteen songs, in all, and although everything chugs along to the metronomic pulse of cubase, there is pacing and variety to the beast overall. Gentle relief comes best of all in This Sweet Love by James Yuill (above), as remixed by Prins Thomas, a ponderous chillscape based on the warmest fingerpicking, and an embrace of vocals. You will feel truly hugged. And once you’ve digested it all, you can take that lovely warm glow on the Eurostar with you, and buy yourself the bestest clothes (I’m not a fashion writer, actually) in all Pareeee!

You can buy the Maison’s goodies at or at their myspace.
If you are a university student, online what do you make of your schools environmental policies? Do they even have green policies to speak of? This week, the students of the University of Arts London have been bringing environmental issues to the forefront, and discussing the various ways that both themselves, their campuses and the courses themselves can be more environmentally aware.


The Go Green Week, also known as Green: The New Black has been running for the last few days and culminates in talks and workshops on Friday, that include Fashion Forward: Creating an Ethical Label between 4pm-6pm RHS East Space, LCF, John Princes Street
which asks: “How can you create a label that looks good, but is also good to the environment?” ECCA and the Centre for Sustainable Fashion present fashion design businesses that are sustainable throughout from their manufacturing processes and materials, to marketing methods that aim communicate and promote their ethical processes to their customers.
Also on Friday afternoon at LCC is the meeting “Students Going Green” –top of the agenda are the following points “Fed up with the lack of recycling at your College? … Want sustainability on the curriculum? … Think Arts London should GO GREEN?” Speaking with the Press Officers of the Student Union, I learnt that a large number of students have voiced their concerns over this topic. The recycling issue specifically has been on ongoing and much debated subject. Many students feel that not enough is being done to provide facilities to recycle. The Green Charter laid out by the Student Union demands that “Sufficient recycling facilities should be available at all Arts London Sites and all Halls of Residence, with consideration also given to specialist recycling e.g. textiles, wood at relevant sites.”

Also on the agenda is for the issues of sustainability to feature more heavily in the Universities curriculum, either in the form of specific modules, or integrated as a whole, and for the campuses to switch to a green energy provider. The student union also explained that they are setting up an “Ethical and Environmental assembly” that will set future Go Green Assembly’s. They have also been encouraging students to sign a petition that is campaigning for a greener Arts London. Realising that strong visuals are the best way to get the point across, the students were asked to be photographed with the green charter and upload their pictures to the blog. An example would be these brave folks.



Learning about the concerted efforts to raise environmental awareness amongst students started me wondering how other universities and student bodies broach this subject. As this is a topic that is dear to our heart, we would love your input on whether your schools and universities are committed to the environmental cause, and if so, do you feel that they are doing enough? . Tell us more at and maybe we can help to highlight the issue.
Be featured in this limited edition anthology of the best new illustrators engaged in environmental thinking. Read on to find out more…

***Please note that this brief is now closed: you can now order a copy of this book online by clicking here***

an illustration by Laura-Maria Arola from issue 9 of Amelia’s Magazine

Now, malady anyone who is following me on Twitter – my new favourite thing in the whole world – will know that I asked my dad to do the research for this book. I know what he’s like – apart from being a typical male who loves nothing more than “disappearing down the rabbit-hole” as my mum calls it (also known as busying himself in new projects) – he also loves a challenge. So I asked him to dig up some info on all the most obscure new alternative technologies currently being explored, sale so that I could put together a brief for Amelia’s Anthology of Illustration.

He rose to the challenge and then some… almost immediately I started receiving email updates on strange new ways of producing energy. But not only that… it seems I have been the unwitting catalyst for a whole new venture – or a whole new rabbit warren to explore, depending on your point of view. A trained if somewhat out of practice scientist, Bruce (that’s my dad, I know, wierd, I call him by his first name)- gleefully told me on Bank Holiday Monday that he’s just designed the best new wave power technology not yet invented. Having read nearly 2000 patents for various wave power technologies he has, in his inimitable way, decided that his idea is quite clearly the best (my dad ALWAYS knows best). Except he won’t share it with me, cos I might, like, post it on the internet or something, before he’s applied for a patent.

Still, exciting stuff, and just the kind of thing I hope to do more of with both this open brief and the resulting book that comes out of it. Amelia’s Magazine in print may be no more, but I could never leave print entirely, and so the idea for this book has been mulling around in my head for sometime now. What we need right now is a whole heap of imagination, because humans need to make a big leap forward if we want to get out of the mess we currently find ourselves in. And whilst the scientists and boffins of this world busy themselves with the minutae of complicated chemical reactions and intricate moving parts, we also need the skills of artists to make these technologies a concrete reality. Without both visions together we will continue to move at a snail’s slither, so my aim is to help quicken that pace. If I can inspire designers and illustrators to better consider the way their energy is produced by drawing alternatives, then maybe they will make better choices about where their own energy comes from. Of course I don’t believe that technology alone is a cure all for all our ills, but it’s a move in the right direction, and I aim to produce a book that provides a comprehensive resource of all the best new illustrators capable of engaging with environmental issues and envisaging future alternative energy sources.

an illustration by Allan Deas for issue 9 of Amelia’s Magazine

What will be in Amelia’s Anthology of Illustration ?
The book will be a compendium of profiles on the best illustrators who submit to this brief. Anyone is eligible to submit work, from anywhere in the world. I would particularly encourage new illustrators; those who are still at college, just graduating, or new to the field. Amelia’s Magazine is used by many influential creatives looking for new talent to employ, and this will be an even better way of getting your work noticed globally.

What will the book look like?
The book will be the same dimensions as Amelia’s Magazine, thereby sitting nicely on the shelf with any copies of the magazine that purchasers might already possess! It will be designed in a similar fashion but also expect some new ideas.

When will it be published and where will it be sold?
Amelia’s Anthology of Illustration will be self-published (again!!!!) The lead-times are just too long with the big publishers, plus they would want more design control than I am prepared to give to them. The ones I have spoken to also insist on producing all their books in the Far East, something I am very uncomfortable with given the dodgy environmental credentials of many industrial operations in that part of the world. It will be produced in the UK by Principal Colour as a limited edition hardback towards the end of 2009, in time for Christmas. Advance orders should be available to purchase on my website by the end of the summer, and will be much appreciated in order to finance the production process as it is going to cost me much more to keep production in the UK. The book will be sold worldwide at specialist art book shops such as those that already stock the magazine. I will aim to produce a second (possibly softback) edition the following year to be made much more widely available.

What can I do to contribute?
I need a number of different artworks from aspiring contributors, so please read the following information carefully and make sure that your submissions meet the criteria before you send them in to me.

Submission criteria


1. Most importantly:
ONE EXCLUSIVE LARGE PIECE done specifically for this anthology and not featured anywhere else.

This should feature an alternative technology that has not yet been built or mass-produced in any great scale. NO RUN-OF-THE-MILL WINDMILLS AND SOLAR PANELS PLEASE!

an intriguing design for a line of windmills on a bouncing rod

This is a challenging theme, but thanks to my dad there are dozens of links below that will lead you off in the right direction. You will need to disappear down the rabbit hole for awhile for this brief requires time and thought to complete. It also requires huge amounts of imagination, which is what illustrators specialise in! And my dad! I’ve always held a belief that the scientific mind and the artistic mind are not really so different from each other. How else do you explain me? The child of two scientists?! but rubbish at science….

Anyway, I digress. In this illustration I want to see ways that a new technology would be integrated into our future lives… so interaction with the surroundings or people will be good. This is not a technical illustration, it’s an aspirational one, but you should imagine this technology in some detail, however fantastical it may be. You could even look back at technologies that were patented as far ago as the 1800s, but that have never become part of the mainstream. Your chosen technology should be the main focus of your whole picture, but don’t forget to add detail.
This should be accompanied by a short written piece describing why you picked this particular technology and what the illustration means to you. This should be no more than 300 words.

A word to the wise: the more obscure your choice of technology the better, since I will probably choose different technologies for each illustrator that I choose to profile.
You can choose to work in two sizes:
Double page (as was used in Amelia’s Magazine)
SIZE: page size: 400mm wide x 245mm high, with a bleed of 3mm all around; ie. final size of your artwork: 406mm x 251mm.
Single page
SIZE: page size: 200mm wide x 245mm high, with a bleed of 3mm all around; ie. final size of your artwork: 206mm x 251mm.
NOTE: Don’t put important stuff in the 3mm bleed zone (but do continue your image into it) as this is where the printers may cut bits off when the magazine is cut and bound.
RESOLUTION: 300dpi, as a photoshop file in CYMK mode, using Photoshop print profile: euro standard swap coated 20% (or euroscale V2)
GUTTER: please also note that the book will have a very deep gutter in the middle so it is good to keep important parts of your illustration away from the centre of the spread in double page images.
MY STYLE: if you want to know about my taste in illustration you should check out the current issue of the mag, or buy a back issue here!

2. A exclusive PICTORIAL LOGO on an environmental theme

Logo designed by Adrian Fleet for Climate Camp in the City at the G20 protests

If you have submitted something for the Climate Camp logo open brief then you would be able to resubmit it for this brief, irrespective of whether it was used or not. The logo could be for an event or a company or a product or anything at all, but it must be promoting environmental themes and ideas. I will be looking for colourful and engaging logos. Consider the work of Adrian Fleet for the G20 Climate Camp in the City logo when thinking about what to enter for this. My style tends to be maximalist, but the words must always be a bold and easy part of the logo to read. It could be work that you have already created and has already been used by a brand (though please check with them before sending it to me) or you could create a new piece of work for a real or fictional brand. It should encompass a creative use of typography with illustration. There will be plenty of food for thought amongst the alternative technologies you will already have researched.
This should be accompanied by a short written piece describing what the logo has or would be used for. 50 words max.
It can be any size, but please create work at 300 dpi to a largish size.

3. Typography: YOUR NAME!
Please create your name in the most imaginative way possible. This could be done by hand, or on a computer, but you should really go to town! Amelia’s Magazine is well known for the use of creative typography, and for Amelia’s Anthology of Illustration the floor is open to you to create your own type for your own name (or how you would like to be known professionally) Don’t think of it as branding, but as something to go to town with. If your work is chosen it will be used to head your page, and it should therefore be really creative and fun. Think of this as your chance to really grab the reader’s attention!
For this reason please work to these dimensions and no smaller. (it could be bigger)
SIZE: 200-400mm wide x 40mm high
RESOLUTION: 300dpi, as a photoshop file in CYMK mode, using Photoshop print profile: euro standard swap coated 20% (or euroscale V2)

4. A Border
Again this should fit a single page and reflect an environmental theme. Be sure to work with 3mm bleed and no more than 25mm in from the edge.
SIZE: page size: 200mm wide x 245mm high, with a bleed of 3mm all around; ie. final size of your artwork: 206mm x 251mm.
NOTE: Don’t put important stuff in the 3mm bleed zone (but do continue your border into it) as this is where the printers may cut bits off when the magazine is cut and bound.
RESOLUTION: 300dpi, as a photoshop file in CYMK mode, using Photoshop print profile: euro standard swap coated 20% (or euroscale V2)

4. Two other bits of illustration.

These should be your best recent work. They do not necessarily need to be on an environmental theme but should showcase as wide a range of imagery as possible, eg. people, things, places, typography etc. If you have created artwork for any of my previous open briefs this could form part of your submission although I would prefer to see new work. Be sure to stick to one style though – illustrators with a strong style of their own will always make the biggest mark, and I am unlikely to pick anyone who does not show a strong style throughout their submissions.
These can be any size, but please label each illustration clearly with a name and date of creation.
SIZE: as big as possible to fit the book’s page sizes.
RESOLUTION: 300dpi, as a photoshop file in CYMK mode, using Photoshop print profile: euro standard swap coated 20% (or euroscale V2)

CLOSING DATE: Monday 3rd August, by midnight please.
Please send lo res versions of your images (saved for web) to in an email clearly marked ANTHOLOGY OF ILLUSTRATION so that I don’t lose sight of it in my inbox if I am rushing through things on the day it arrives.
(This should be 6 pieces of work altogether. PLEASE DON’T SEND MORE THAN THIS)

If you are chosen for inclusion in Amelia’s Anthology of Illustration then you will be notified shortly after this date, once I have made my decisions. I have yet to decide how I will put together the profiles, but I may well need a photo from you and a short interview. If this is the case you will be notified later on in the summer.
And if you have any questions that are not answered above then please email me for clarification.
Join the facebook event here to ensure you get updates as they happen.

Best wishes and happy drawing!

Below is a very long list of links, courtesy of Bruce: this is by no means conclusive, and the technologies may never work, but they are all being explored and would be valid ideas to illustrate. Youtube and Google Images are both a great source of innovative technologies, and I am sure you can find more. Feel free to go off and google you heart out – but you must illustrate something real and possible, and not a fantasy idea of your own. (unless you are also a scientist of course)

Wind turbines

Wikipedia wind power info

Magenn’s revolutionary wind power system on youtube

Magenn Air Rotar system

Magenn’s home page

The Floating Balloon Wind Generator

Motorwind Camping Set Wind Turbine

Knex wind turbine

Magnetically Levitated wind turbine

Great pic of huge Maglev wind turbine

Wikipedia entry about Maglev wind turbines

Maglev wind turbines homepage

Mag-Wind Vertical Axis Turbine

A Flying Wind Machine!

Floating Wind Turbines

A great blog about lots of different alternative energy projects including wierd and fantastical wind turbines

Huge Kites

Optiwind accelerating turbine

Selsam superturbines

Rotating wind power towers

Broadstar’s Aerocam

FloDesign wind turbines

Wikipedia definition of airborne wind turbines

downloadable PDF containing interesting info about different types of airborne wind turbines

Wikipedia definition of Kitegen

Kitegen website – plans for a huge airborne wind farm!

Great picture of how kites could generate electricity

Guardian article about kite power

Video showing how a kite ladder would work

Makani Power high altitude wind kites

Google have put money into the Makani vision

Makani “wind dam” picture

Great article about Saul Griffith — wind energy entrepeneur, and president of Makani

Tom Van Sant makes amazing kite ladders as sculpture

Wind Harvesting farms

Helix Wind

More Helix Wind porn

Google search results for wind power technologies

Mariah Power wind turbines

Google videos about wind power

The huge offshore aerogenerator

Quiet Revolution wind turbines

Wave power

Oscillating water columns

Anaconda wave technology

SIE-CAT wave energy accumulator

A list of wave power patents going back to the 1800s

Danish Wave Energy Society

the Wave Dragon

Wave Star Energy

Wave Energy Centre

CWave Power

the Aegir Dynamo


Columbia Power

Float wave electric power station

the Manchester Bobber

Orecon oscillating water column

OE Buoy

Aquamarine power

Sperboy wave energy converter

SSG Concept

The Seadog Pump

Buoys technology

Floating power plant

Surf Power

Power Buoy

the Wave Roller

Langlee Wave Power


video about Harnessing the Gulf Stream! (is this a good idea?)

Wikipedia entry about wave power

Pelamis on wikipedia

Pelamis wave power

Pelamis being tested in Portugal

Google videos on wave power

Biowave power system

video showing Biowave power working

Video – giant rubber snakes!

SRI wave powered generator

Ocean Power Technologies

video – Aqua Buoys

Aqua Buoy movie

Oyster wave power

Tidal power

Wikipedia on tidal power

Video – tidal wave energy

youtube – idea for tidal energy barrage in florida

Sea Gen

google video links for Sea Gen

Marine Current Turbines

video of Biostream tidal power system

Gorlov helical water turbine on wikipedia

Gorlov Helical Turbine

3D interactive model that shows blades of Gorlov turbine

Severn Barrage

Solar Energy

Wikipedia on solar energy


wikipedia on thermal solar energy

wikipedia on solar energy generating systems

wikipedia on solar power tower

BBC news report on solar power stations

Solar Power tower in Spain

image of Solar Power tower

more images of solar power tower in spain

Bright Source solar power on wikipedia

Bright Source Energy

Solar Reserve

youtube on solar tower energy

solar tower energy in spain on youtube

Enviromission solar tower


Dual axis solar tower structure


photovoltaic energy

youtube on israeli solar energy

First Solar free field power plants

youtube about plastic solar cells producing solar power

Konarka power plastic

Standard geothermal

Geothermal power on wikipedia

youtube geothermal energy vid

Enhanced geothermal

Wikipedia – enhanced geothermal systems

youtube video on enhanced geothermal systems

Hot Rock Technology

Alta Rock Energy



The Reluctant Photojournalist

Features a variety of vintage and modern prints from Werner Bischof’s well known humanitarian photography including the Bihar famine, more about Europe post WWII and the South Korean war. Alongside these sit Bischof’s equally beautiful but perhaps lesser known early experiments with abstracts and nudes.

Photographic co-op Magnum Photos Ground Floor, 63 Gee Street, London EC1V 3RS, 0207 490 1771
Free Entry



Reorienting common notions of contemporary Arab art and lifestyle and debunking ‘Orientalist’ depictions. Arab artists Marianne Catzaras, Dora Dhouib and Wael Shawky explore themes of mass media, Diaspora and religion via film and photography.

Selma Feriani Gallery, 23 Maddox Street, Mayfair, London W1S 2QN
7th Apr – 13th May 2009
Free entry


The Abyss

A new joint exhibition by former Wimbledon College of Art students, Nicola Stead and Dan Jupp.

The Outside World, 44 Redchurch Street, London E2 7DP
7th May – 13th May By appointment Thursday to Saturday
Free entry


The Hiding Place

Lewis Chamberlain
Exquisitely rendered pencil drawings whisk the viewer away into muted landscapes
which toy with scale, suburbia and the surreal.

James Hyman Gallery Savile Row, London W1S 3PD, 020 7494 3857
30th April – 30th May


Contemporary Craft and Fine Art

An exhibition celebrating the materials, processes and techniques involved in making extraordinary objects, the exhibition will feature nine artists from different arts and craft and design fields.

Oriel Myrddin Gallery, Church Lane, Carmarthen SA31 1LH
4th Apr – 16th May 09, 10 – 5 Mon – Sat
Free entry

Monday 11 May

Telepathe are a too-cool-for-school three piece from Brooklyn. They’re playing 93 Feet East. They get obtuse Krautronica and make it go “POP!” – maybe they’ll be the next Animal Collective… Supported by Ou Est Le Swimming Pool.

Tuesday 12 May

Dan Mangan plays The Electroacoustic Club, salve housed at The Slaughtered Lamb, viagra Clerkenwell. He’s a heartfelt songwriting kind of guy, information pills sings like he means it, and he’s much better than that Elbow record. Support comes from Deer Park.

Wednesday 13 May

Our new favourite boyfriend-girlfriend duettists, Young Paul, will be giving The Cobden Club, 107 Kensal road a taste of 80s electronic treats. get in touch with the band for hassle-free entry, as it’s a private members club. Not just a fine gig, then, but also a chance to see where the Old Etonians schmooze.

Thursday 14 May

Alice and The Cool Dudes at Barden’s Boudoir. This is the high point of our music week. Alice Grant of Fulborn Teversham, is leaving her jazzhead buddies to one side to unveil some pensive indie songs, delivered by a totally unique voice that totters across a tightrope of uncannily powerful and tearful exhaustion. Surely she won’t disappoint?????

Friday 15 May

Up in Nottingham, North-East London’s finest jokeshop salesmen of parallel-universe, narrative ska will be testing out some new material where they think no one can hear them. If you can find a place called Demo, you must prove Hothead Show wrong. Prepare for shockingly tight wizardry of the jerky-jerky groove.

Saturday 16 May

A night of so-angry-we-can-only-tell-you-very-very-slowly Metal, with some catatonically droning Grunge, and atonal noise that may cause loss of balance on all but the lowest of seating. Roll up at The Constitution and enjoy Dethscalator, Scul Hazzards and Batrider. If you don’t take earplugs, then take cotton wool to mop up you bleeding lugholes.

Sunday 17 May

Always a good bet for a sunday night is Cross Kings, 126 York Way, in King’s Cross. On the ground level, David Goo will jolly along an open mic, which always has a few very eccentric envelope-pushers pencilled in. The avant-gardishness couples nicely with the family warmth, houmous and pitta that makes this a great pub. It’s worth paying a few quid to be allowed into the basement also. Things are a bit more organized (sound-checks and everything) but happily, there’s still no obvious divide between the musicians and the audience. What sundays are for.

Tuesday 12th May

Climate (Mis)behaviour
Dana Center
The Science Museum’s Dana Centre, dosage
?165 Queen’s Gate?, sildenafil
South Kensington
?London?SW7 5HD
+0044 (0)207 942 4040

Rescuing the planet requires behavioural change on an unprecedented scale. From individual action to global politics, what are the different strategies attempting to achieve this? Social psychology, advertising, policy and direct action are all thrown into the mix in this debate. ??This event is trying out a new format called Policy Slam, which is funded by the Democratic Innovation Fund of the Ministry of Justice. With the help of the experts, you will discuss, present and vote on several different options.

Illustration by Lea Jaffy

Wednesday 13th May
Morphic Resonance, Collective Memory and Habits of Nature – An evening with Rupert Sheldrake

6.30pm drinks & buffet at Gaia House, 
(18 Well Walk, Hampstead, NW3 1LD)

7.30pm Talk & discussion at Burgh House 
(Opposite Gaia House, New End Square, Hampstead, NW3 1LT)

When Rupert Sheldrake first put forward his idea of Morphic Resonance more than twenty years ago, it caused a great stir in the scientific community.  The Editor of Nature denounced it as “the best candidate for burning there has been for many years” and proclaimed that it was “heresy”.  In his recently published new edition, available on the evening, Rupert documents the evidence that has built up in support of this hypothesis.  He will reflect on the Human Genome Project and other reductionist ideas, where few of the grand claims have come to fruition, not unlike the economic bubble that has recently burst.
The paradigm shift that Morphic Resonance offers is coherent with the Gaia Hypothesis, where the cosmos is understood to be a developing organism, where nature is alive, interconnected and creative.  There is an inherent memory in nature, and evolution is an interplay of habit and creativity, like our own lives.  According to this way of seeing formative causation, all self-organising systems, including crystals, plants and animals contain an inherent memory, given by a process called morphic resonance from previous similar systems.  
These ideas also resonate with diverse indigenous traditions around the world, including those of European ancestry.  For much of our history humans have experienced our relationship with the Earth, and indeed the Universe, to be fluid and reciprocal.  Rupert has taken up the challenge of exploring this ancient wisdom thorough the modern scientific tradition.
You can reserve your place online at:
Or send  a cheque for £10, made payable to The Gaia Foundation.

For further details please contact Sarah at: or 020 7428 0055.
Rupert Sheldrake is recognised as one of the world’s most innovative biologists.  He was a Fellow of Clare College, Cambridge, and a Research Fellow of the Royal Society, and is currently Director of the Perrott-Warrick Project.  He is author of more than 80 scientific papers in peer-reviewed journals and many books, including ‘The Presence of the Past’,  ‘The Sense of Being Stared At’, ‘Dogs That Know When Their Owners Are Coming Home’  and  ‘Chaos, Creativity and Cosmic Consciousness’. His web site is

llustration by Eco Labs

Thursday 14th May

?Amnesty International UK
Human Rights Action Centre?
17 – 25 New Inn Yard
London EC2A 3EA
Nearest tube: Old Street

Free entry, refreshments and snacks provided
RSVP: or call 07534 598 733 (Early booking recommended!)
Find out what YOU can DO to stop climate change.?Throughout history ordinary people have been responsible for all major social changes – women’s rights, civic rights and even democracy itself in many places can be said to be result of direct action. Taking action is the very first step in making big changes happen. Direct action is taken by people who feel that the political process is not working to address profoundly important issues.
Climate change is the most urgent challenge we’ve ever faced – and politicians are not showing the strength of character needed to actually address this problem. Instead of serious sustainable solutions we see new runways and new coal fired power stations- deals that benefit the bottom line of the big players and not the wider population. Climate Camp believes that people everywhere need to work out what they can do – and then do it. Taking action yourself to make the world you want to see is a logical response to a very serious situation.

Are you interested in doing more to highlight the urgency of climate change? Or the relevance of direct action to struggles for jobs, peace and justice? Are you intrigued but feel uncomfortable about going outside the mainstream political process? Would you consider getting involved but don’t know how? Are you nervous about the consequences?
‘Take Back the Power! The Importance of Direct Action Today’ will be unique opportunity to hear about direct action from people who have participated in different ways. Speakers will range from people on the front line to those helping in the background. This includes Deborah Grayson – one of the Parliament Climate Rush – who is on bail and will be speaking about Climate Rush (photgraphed below)
To reserve a place/s please RSVP to or call 07534 598 733.

Photograph by Amelia Gregory

Saturday 16th May
Euroflashmob: Europe United Against Airport Expansion
Stop Airport Expansion

Saturday 16 May 2009. The day of the Eurovision Song Contest. 12 noon on the dot at Heathrow
Terminal 1 Departures. Join Heathrow Flashmobbers in a Europe-wide Flash Mob – taking place on the same day at 6 airports across Europe.
Flash Heathrow! Flash Paris! Flash Frankfurt! Flash Schipol! Flash Brussels! Flash Dublin!
Each flashmob will be singing Eurovision classics (song-sheets provided), so download your favourite eurovision song onto your ipod or phone and bring your friends, instruments, hats, wigs, and your dancing shoes and let’s party. Now for the serious bit: airport expansion is seriously bad for local people, increased noise, air pollution, and especially the climate. The aviation industry want to expand airports across the UK and Europe, but opposition is huge, and the scientists are telling us we have to drastically cut emissions if we are to beat climate change. Flashmobs are a fun way to highlight the real opposition there is to expansion at airports across Europe. Here’s another big chance to show our opposition to a 3rd runway at Heathrow.
See you in Heathrow Terminal 1 Departures at 12 noon on the dot!
Tell BAA to get in tune: No Third Runway.

Illustration by Sachiko

Green Wedge II
A major Green Party benefit gig, to aid the Euro Election campaign.

£5 entry.
Pangea Project
72 Stamford Hill,
Stoke Newington,
N16 6XS

The highly eclectic lineup includes:
The Refinements (Raucous Ska)
Sarah Ellen Hughes Duo (jazz singer)

Selim: 07853 725476
Come along and support the local bands by cheering loudly, the Green Party by giving us your money and support, and the Pangea Project by drinking copious amounts.
It’s all shaping up to be a fun night, ably facilitated by your host Matt Hanley (ahem), with comprehensive Eurovision updates throughout the evening!
You can buy advance tickets here:?
I love good days. Days that unfold in a series of pleasant surprises that put a spring back in your step and remind you that the world can be a good place. Three such things occurred today, buy well, four if you include the free coffee I was given for no reason, and five if you take into account the particularly magnificent texture of the water in which I swam early this morning (a good start surely), breathing fresh and clean from the night’s rain, silk to the touch and causing my skin to tingle for hours after; but silk water aside, only one of these things is relevant to you Zach, can I call you Zach?



There was a moment at tonight’s concert where you clasped your fingers behind your head, raised your eyes towards the ceiling, and sighed a private smile – do you sometimes not quite believe it? I couldn’t believe it. I’d given up the hope of seeing you (you the object of a little musical infatuation), play at the Forum tonight – a torment when that venue is within spitting distance of my home. I’d cycled past and seen the queues outside (one of the nicest looking crowds to gather outside the Forum, believe me I know), my head hung low and my pedal stilted, perhaps I could sneak in, how could I live here so long and not know a secret entrance? Just as I was reconciling myself to a night of listening to Gulag Orchestra within the confines of my bedroom and strumming Postcards from Italy alone on the roof, a good thing happened – buzz buzz in my back pocket.



“Hey Luisa how are you?”
“I’ve been better, well actually it’s been a pretty good day, but – ”
“Yeah well listen, you like Beirut right?”
“Like them? I Love – I mean yeah, they’re ok. I guess they’re ok.”
“Well you couldn’t do me a favour. I know it’s late notice and you’ve probably got plans”
“Erm, yeah I’ve got plans”
“Well I’m supposed to be reviewing them tonight but they wouldn’t give me a plus one and I don’t want to go alone, you wouldn’t go instead would you?”
(I’ve pulled over and am silently raising my fists to the sky)
Hmm…I suppose I could, I mean I would like to see them but then I don’t know what I’d write, I’m sure I’ll think of something-”
“So you’ll go?”
“Yes, yes I’ll go.”
“Oh great, thanks, just say you’re me, get some pictures, you know the drill, thanks again,”
“No problem, really,” (jumping up and down a little bit),
“What’s that noise?”
“Oh, nothing, some kid, thanks a lot, have a good night,”
“You too, byeeeee.”



So that’s how a good day found me watching you tonight, I can’t remember the last time I was this excited about a gig. You came out to rapturous applause, rewarding the audience kindly with Nantes, how does it feel to have a crowd sing your songs along with you? It was as though you were singing old folk songs of a collective homeland from which we’ve all strayed, not something created from a photograph and a few months in Eastern Europe and Paris. And now you’ve moved over to Mariachi influences? I was raised on Cumbia, and I’ve always thought the sound is very similar to that of Eastern Europe, accordions and trumpets and powerful melodies. Everyone around me was in hushed silence for the entirety of the performance, and you seemed so relaxed, demure, a sound like yours doesn’t require anything else – I did like the occasional hand conducting though. On behalf of the audience, not that anyone would make me spokesperson for anything, thank you, it was wonderful incredible; but then you know that, not everyone gets two encores. See you again soon I hope, and erm, if you ever need someone to tap a tambourine or a cowbell, or maybe an old foot pedal harmonium just rescued from cobwebs, then … hi.


Lulu Lampshade

SM (small print): emotional content may have been exaggerated slightly for effect.
Will Morgan is an excellent photographer, store clever person and all round nice guy. His photographs are subtle and dream-like; intimate yet austere, information pills all of us here at Amelia’s Magazine are big fans of his beautiful and exciting work. I was lucky enough to catch up with Will to talk about his work and the politics of photography.



Hi, patient Will, how are you today?

Hello Roisin, I’m very good today thanks , the sun’s out and things are pretty much perfect.

I really love your photographs especially your use of light and attention to details- what makes a good photograph for you?

Thank you, that always nice to hear. Images work for me when they inspire an emotional response or are successful at conveying a mood and atmosphere. It’s the same for me with any art work really, every discipline. When I was at college I was really interested in domestic photography, family albums and the like, I always felt that these images were incredibly powerful because they are loaded with so much meaning, they tie into notions of memory, loss, happiness, sadness and the passage of time. I’m sounding a bit pretentious here but never mind eh? I think that an image can stand on it’s own purely by being beautiful as well, ideally one would combine the beauty with an emotional response. I think photographs are a form of language so it’s nice if they say something.


Can you tell me about your average working day?

I don’t really have an average working day, I shoot a lot of editorial so the jobs are varied and my personal work is even more so. If I’m on a commissioned job it’s usually an early start, double check the equipment as I have been known to leave vital bits behind. Drink some very strong coffee, try not to smoke (fail) and head to the location, be very nice to everybody and start to shoot. Obviously keep to the deadline, work in close conjunction with the art director and hope the client is happy! All my commissioned work is digital these days so there’s normally an hour at the end of the shoot to go through the images then I retouch and deliver. My personal work is far looser I identify a project I’m interested in and shoot on my own, with minimal equipment. I do get up a lot later on these days, probably smoke more cigarettes though.

Do you have a favourite camera?

I started off using a 1960′s Hassleblad and I still love it, but these days I mainly shoot with a 645 contax and a P30 back, with the advent of digital clients just won’t pay for film and now days they want to see everything immediately, plus you get used to the freedom of digital, you can shoot to your hearts content. I do like my contax but the Hassleblad is probably my favourite although I rarely shoot film these days, I used to have a Polaroid land camera which I throughly enjoyed but I lost it. Lets move on I’m getting a little emotional

What do you make of the whole film vs. digital photography debate? I mean do you view the advent of digital photography as a completely bad thing?

I’m not sure it’s even a debate anymore, digital photography is here and it’s a photographic tool, you just have to learn to use it and I think to deny it is a bit self defeating. I do believe that images shot on film look better than digital raw files but the technology is so good now and if you know a little about digital retouching I can’t really tell the difference. Digital has a huge amount of freedom, film is expensive with digital after the initial investment you shoot for free really, you can really experiment and as I’ve said all my commissions assume I’m shooting digital. I don’t think digital is a bad thing or a good thing really it’s just the way photography has evolved. Different jobs/projects lend themselves to different platforms/cameras and so on, whatever works for you is the best really. Even when I do shoot film I scan it and tweak it in photoshop so it becomes a digital image anyway.

I think that’s really interesting, it’s quite taboo I think to be positive about digital photography, it’s refreshing to hear that you’re pro-digital and proud; whilst film is beautiful, people can always become purist about things like that and I agree that digital technology can add something great to photography- as we can see in your work!


Continuing with this foray into the ethics or politics of photgraphy, do you agree with the idea that a photograph is the truest form of representation?

I’m probably misinterpreting the question but umm, not really, I think a photograph captures how someone or something looked in that split second the shutter clicked, it’s a tricky one but as a photographer you’re imposing yourself on the scene, you crop in camera, use apertures and f-stops different focal lengths, different formats, you edit your images, decide how to present them, all of this creates a selective reality, I’m not even sure if reality is the right word, also now with the computer technology you can completely alter the original image . All of these things have a huge bearing on whatever you’re photographing and of course you want it to look good. I don’t think it’s a true representation of reality but it has the edge over painting I think.


Can you tell me about your journey to where you are today (career-wise rather than transport-wise!)? Do you have any advice for aspiring photographers?

Well I went to India for a year when I was 20, I picked up a camera there for the first time and really enjoyed it, I’d stayed in India too long so I missed my University place to study English so i did a part time course in photography. I loved it so went the route of art foundation, photography BA at LCP (also this got me to London). I did well at LCP I won a few prizes and it gave me the confidence to believe I might actually be able to make a living from photography. After my degree I worked part time at the National Film Theatre and assisted various photographers as well as picking up a few commissions for my self. It’s only really been the last three years that I’ve made a reasonable living purely from my own photography but it’s always been fun and I’ve never wanted to stop. I think getting over the fear of the portfolio meetings was crucial! The only advice I would give is to keep at it, never be afraid of showing your work, shoot as much as you can and enjoy it, I think it’s the best job in the world (apart from rock star maybe)

Which photographers inspired you early on in your career?

I was always hugely impressed with Philip Lorca-di Corcia in particular his Hollywood Hustler series, I was and still am a big fan of Eva Vermendel and Martina Hoogland-Ivanow, Paolo Roversi’s work is always beautiful, Christian Boltanski, Stephen Gill, Bruce Davidson, Azim Haidaryan, Nadav Kander, there’s a lot of them but I’ll leave it there.

What projects are you working on at the moment?

I’m working on a few, I’m shooting a series of confessional boxes in Catholic churches, a series on cineastes based around the National Film Theatre and bus stops at night.

I can’t wait to see them!



All photographs appear courtesy of Will Morgan
At first glance, mind you might have thought that activism, arts and permaculture would make the strangest of bedfellows, but don’t let any preconceived notions cloud your judgement. The imaginative people behind ArtsAdmin are laying on a fortnight of activities which will demonstrate how effortlessly these subjects can work together. Under the name of Two Degrees , and with the recent quote by George Monbiot acting as a kind of frame of reference – ‘We have to stop treating climate change as an urgent issue, we have to start treating it as an international emergency” – the week long series of performances, activities, exhibitions and installations will have one thing in common; our relationship with the environment and the impact of climate change.


I chatted recently with ArtsAdmin, in their beautiful and unexpectedly peaceful surroundings (well, they are on Commercial Road!) of Toynbee Studios (also the setting of many of the forthcoming events). They explained that even the title of the festival is apposite. ‘Two Degrees’ is in reference to the reports that global temperatures are set to rise by that amount in around 40 years. A relatively ‘small’ rise such as this could lead to catastrophic changes on our planet.

While the message is serious, many performances will be light hearted, and all will be engaging. A case in point, the ‘set list’ reads thus;  
“A reconstructed airplane serves real airline food delivered from City Airport; permaculturists and artists lead a foraging exploration of the City; a crowd of Londoners, an artist and a water dowser trace the course of a great London river; radical temporary transformations of lunchtime London; an artist-activist family confess to past flights they have taken; climate change cabaret; an urban-rural walk to City Farm; a bicycle-powered DJ set (run by good friends of Amelia’s Magazine; Magnificent Revolution) and a filmed rural idyll accompanied by passenger jet noise form Two Degrees”


Personally, I like the sound of the climate change cabaret. It’s about time that cabaret branched out a little, don’t you think? Speaking of avant-garde performances, a particular highlight of the week will be C.R.A.S.H. A Postcapitalist A-Z, a collaboration between ArtsAdmin and the fantastically named collective that is The Laboratory of Insurrectionary Imagination. While it is difficult to predict exactly what will occur, (it’s best just to come down to the City of London to watch), C.R.A.S.H will be creating a phantasmagorical world where “Eight postcapitalist commissions transform lunchtime in the City including the very last opportunity to purchase a real woman, a soup kitchen distributing bowls of gold soup to City workers, a lone cyclist pedalling a field kitchen around the Square Mile, a forum of bankers, ex-bankers, climate activists, artists and others confessing their capitalist tendencies, and a café of equivalence where a bowl of food costs the same as a banker’s daily salary in parallel with food costs in the developing world.” I believe it is safe to say; brace yourself!


Elsewhere, the issue of airline travel is of course, a pertinent topic in an event that is engaging in dialogue about climate change. At Toynbee Studios, it will be dealt with in an unexpectedly humorous way. In an activity that Dada would be proud of, the artist Richard DeDomenici (and his cabin crew) will be serving out helpings of airplane food, in its airline style packaging. Just in case you didn’t think that this was authentic enough, your meal will be served as you sit in a recycled airplane interior, which Two Degrees hasten to add, also includes in flight entertainment. For any of you who would pitch up just because you like the taste of airline meals (someone has to…?) there is a deeper meaning behind this. DeDomenici is responding to a recent quote by chef Marcus Wareing about British pub food, which he declares being of poor quality, so much so that for a proper meal, “you would be better off getting on a plane”. Now, I would disagree with chef Wareing on both counts. Has he never eaten at The Eagle? Moreover, it is an irresponsible comment to make, one which highlights the ease in which we get on and off flights, almost as if they were trains. So, rather than getting on a plane, you can experience all the wonders of a flight (but without the guilt of actually flying). Hurrah!


If you are anything like me; a bit of a hippy with a nerdish fondness for maps and discovering secret, ancient rivers, ( I’ll admit that there are very few of us around!) then you will especially enjoy the outing that Two Degrees have planned. The artist Amy Sharrock will be leading a walk which she describes as her response to global concerns. This will come in the form of an excursion from Islington to the Southbank, tracing the lines of the ancient, and lost Walbrook River. Not obscure enough for you? Did I mention that any participants will be dressed in blue and tied together to resemble water molecules?

All of the events can be booked online at It promises to be a thought-provoking and engaging week. Knowing ArtsAdmin and the people behind this event, however out of left field the performances may be, the message will be central: we are running out of time in which to save the planet, and the time in which to act is now.


Crochet, help shells and pipe cleaners…beasts banished forever to the chasmic closet of craft have broken free of the plastic furniture covers and dried flowers to be resurrected as one of the most entertaining young collections to have paraded down the catwalks in some time. Anna Plunkett and Luke Sales, the Australian born and bred design team behind Romance Was Born have glued-gunned themselves firmly in place as the merry pranksters of Sydney.


No one would blame you for crinkling your nose at the idea of a fashion collection inspired by someone’s nana. But peeking through the kaleidoscopic vision of these wizards of Oz . Driven by textures, shapes and above all colors, Romance Was Born in the fertile imaginations of these two talented designers when they met while studying fashion at the East Sydney Technical College.


After graduating in 2007 they were invited to attend the Fourth International Support Awards in Italy where they turned down internships with Galliano because “their fashion fairytale had another date with destiny”. These young (water)guns were intent on starting their own label with, and why not, the suitcase size booty of Galliano laces and silks they’d received as a prize from the competition.


These two confectioners are just as much substance as they are style. Clever tailoring and feminine shapes pepper the opulent couture showpieces. Collaborations with Australian artist Del Kathryn Bartonproduced original digitally printed fabrics and a 12 piece collection entitled ‘Garden of Eden’, which was exhibited at Kaliman Gallery alongside Barton’s work.


Romance Was Born has also found its way onto the figures of Debbie Harry, Lily Allen, MIA, Cyndi Lauper and Karen O (who opted for a red tulle dress with googly eyes) and rising star rockers Architecture in Helsinki, who wore their puppetry inspired glo-in-the-dark pieces for the filming of their band’s new clip. They must surely have tagged one particular Icelandic songbird for their next mark. we can’t wait to see what they pull out of their party hats next!


When you first gaze upon the work of Accessory designer Fred Butler it’s all rather indigestible, case flying from one medium to the other with all the energy and flair of an excitable child. She is constantly adding more layers, no rx depth and colour to her pieces, help the result culminates in mind bogglingly colourful and decidedly hap hazard pieces.

With such gusto It’s hard to fathom how to predict her, one instance you could be presented with a outlandish mathematical headpiece rather reminiscent of a futurist rubix cube. Then next your met with a piñata style headdress (lets hope the model isn’t planning on attending any children’s parties, it may conclude in a rather unpleasant knock to the head) Each piece is as brilliant as it is unique, Butler is one of the few designers it’s hard to typecast, her work has been vaguely linked to that of fellow kitsch designers Peter Jensen and Alistair Carr but apart from these she seems a law unto herself.




Her latest collection featured a hallucinogenic short film entitled “Conspicuous consumption” to which ethereal models clad in swarouski encrusted headpieces serenely sway in a rather hypnotic manner, its all rather like a trip back to Kate Bushes Wuthering Heights video, alas minus the haunting vocals!



Fred Butler is an infamous character in the fashion sphere; regularly her work adorns the pages of the magazine elite from Elle, I-D, Vogue, Lula, and Hommes Japan to Wonderland. She even graced the pages Amelia’s Magazine to which she featured in issue 10, which is still up for grabs for the record, it’s worth taking a peak!

Her success is universal, making waves not merely within the fashion sphere but within Music also. She boasts eccentric followers from electro folk icon Patrick Wolf to the elegant Bishi. But she doesn’t just appeal to London’s Underground sphere, she has a whole host of high calibre clients from MTV, Selfridges to the V&A!



Who knows what Fred Butler has hidden under her brightly coloured sleeve, I for one can’t wait to find out!
The Dø are Dan Levy and Olivia B. Merilahti, view who luckily for our ears found each other and started making pop music for fun whilst working on a soundtrack together.
They have already made it big outre-manche, site with their album A Mouthful got to Number 1. Their vibrant sound swings from the playground to the streets and back again, viagra making for an exciting album brimming to the rafters with curiosity, exuberance and passion. It’s strings sweep with cinematic drama over lullabies and hip-hop.
From their genre-switching music to their diverse cultural background; a mix of French (Dan) and Finnish (Olivia), their sound is more unique than any boy-girl duo to have come along for a while.


Hello Olivia, how are you today?
I’m good thank you- trying to relax …it’s been a while since I’ve had a day off, and we’re getting ready for our crazy UK/Germany tour

Wow, it sounds like your super busy! Are you in Paris right now? I’m jealous, I used to live there and I miss it…
Yes- shall we swap? i’d rather live in London! I dont know why, I’ve always felt very close to England.

It’s a plan! I’ll pack my suitcase as soon as we’re done interviewing! :-)

So it’s probably the first thing most people want to ask about, but how did you guys decide on the name The Dø ? I read it means ‘death’ in Danish…

d+o=Dan+Olivia. Do=do-re-mi-fa-so-la-ti-do! “do(e), a deer, a female deer” (check The Sound of Music). In Denmark it means somthing about death, yeah but, the “ø” was mostly because it looks like the note as written in traditional music theory.


I like it, The Dø is a big melting pot of languages and cultures; even Austrian with The Sound of Music! I suppose musically as well you mix up the languages with English and Finnish…but not French- was that a concious decision?
Yeah- French was never an option in music for me, my musical language is English, it’s always been, because it is also my musical culture, and pop music has always been in English

Also French in it’s nature for me anyway seems very structured and constrained linguistically- maybe thats hard to put into music?

Like Opera was mostly sung in Italian, German or French…but not in English, really.
It’s just like using the instrument that feels right.

What about singing in Finnish? Listening to your album A Mouthful- it really adds a ethereal touch when it’s used, it such a lovely sounding language!
Hum, I guess the song & the melody of “Unissasi Laulelet” just came up naturally in
Finnish. I didn’t really plan to write a song in Finnish, but I do sometimes need to change and use Finnish in my compositions.

Cool, it’s great to be able to use language like another instrument like you said. Do you think you both approach music with different views on art and music or do you have a lot of similar tastes?
On some stuff we don’t agree, but we’re usually extremely connected. Two people working together is a very intense activity…our musical backgrounds are different, but we’re so complementary…


Talking about other experiences and influences- what are/were your personal inspirations musically?
I grew up on a lot of songs, in English or Finnish. My mum used to sing me a lot of lullabies in Finnsh, and I guess it is still an inspiration…Then I discovered Nirvana and Hole, then Bjork, Fiona Apple, Ella Fitzgerald, Goran Bregovic, The Wutang and Eminem.
Dan grew up on jazz and discovered classical music in his teens.Dan’s influences are John Coltrane (Dan played the saxophone for many many years), Bela Bartok, Zappa, etc. He was always sure he would become a composer, while I was singing in bands from age 14, but I was very shy about my own songs.

Wow, from 14! So music, even at a young age, was something you definitely wanted to do later in life? And what about for Dan?
Yes, but since I didn’t grow up in a family that was artistic in any way, I didn’t realise until quite late that it could actually become a job! Whereas there was no doubt for Dan.

So what does the future hold for The Dø ?
We’re gonna keep touring until august, in the UK and the rest of Europe, and then we record album 2…we’ve started recording a few songs already and it feels amazing!

I’m really excited to hear that! Thank you! :-)

A Mouthful is out now.
Welcome to the weird, order wonderful world of Catherine Le Page. This Quebecoise knows how to draw and her illustrations are have a beautiful je-ne-sais-quoi about them. The most interesting pieces create a unique vision of femininity from childhood to womanhood. Brands, case diets, boys, careers and children appear throughout her work, highlighting the concerns of the modern feminine psyche whilst utilising a self-consciously girly whimsical aesthetic. The combination of the two give a deeply intimate view of womanhood.



As we see below, she seems to condone a sort of universal sisterhood of happiness; the “for better” whilst marriage is perhaps implied as the “for worse”. She both embraces the feminine in her themes of nature, motherhood and celebrations of the female body whilst questioning its social implications.


The colours and lines used by Le Page are delightfully naive, like the imaginings of a teenage girl; all crushes and crying carved in crayon on pages torn out of squared exercise books, taking us back to the days of secret notes passed in class and writing boys names in pen on our knickers.



Her work is always mature in it’s treatment of subject matter; like her couple holding hands at the corner of a page faced with giant colourful block arrows, with Le Page‘s native Canada imprinted hauntingly in the background, like the big scary future looming. Or a couple coping with a long distance relationship. Le Page‘s illustrations manage to be both personal whilst universal whilst still maintaining a strong sense of narrative.



Le Page tightropes the line between a twee femininity and these astute quasi- feminist observations, whilst being neither particularly approving nor politically critical in her work. Yet because she, as a female artist, is asserted as a subject of creativity and expression; it is men who become objects of desire, whilst female concerns take centre stage. Yet does being female and addressing issues of femininity in art always have to be a feminist matter? Opinions welcome…I’m off to burn my bra.

Yesterday, about it an impassioned plea in the form of an email dropped through into my Amelia’s Magazine inbox. The subject matter was a slightly different topic to what usually features in the Earth section, unhealthy but instantly we knew that it warranted a feature, and needed to be shared with our readers. So todays topic is about 10,000 ex- battery farmed chickens that need rehousing urgently, otherwise they will be sent to slaughter.

Henny Penny was found at the bottom of a battery farm cage unable to stand.

It may seem a slightly incongruous topic, but then I have always had a soft spot for hens. While I love the little corner of urban sprawl that I now occupy in East London, I spent my formative years in Cornwall. Growing up in bucolic, pastoral countryside, my parents (recently decamped from Wandsworth) decided they wanted to have a bit of The Good Life, and got themselves a chicken hutch and about 10 hens. Every morning, my job was the Collection Of The Eggs – I took my job very seriously. Armed with a basket I would quietly step into the hatch; I will never forget the peaceful, warm atmosphere that I would encounter. Ten contented, almost post coital chickens clucking gently to themselves as they settled down for a rest after a morning spent laying eggs. Needless to say, the eggs tasted delicious – rich, thick and creamy. So, with these memories in mind, there is an incomprehensible difference between the hens in our back garden all those years ago, and the pictures of the chickens that accompanied the email. Emaciated, featherless and pathetic – the real image behind battery farming that you don’t see on boxes of eggs.


The people asking for our, and your help are a group called Little Hen Rescue, based in Norfolk. Yesterday I spoke with one of the volunteers, Emma, who told me that all of the group volunteer, and all are working up to 14 hour days in the pursuit of rescuing battery chickens. She explained that the hens will have spent most of their life in a tiny battery cage, laying eggs until their production level drops, after which they will usually be sent to slaughter. At this point, they are generally only sixteen months old, and seeing that chickens usually live for up to six years , they are not even halfway through their life span. The operation that they are currently undertaking is their most ambitious, and largest yet. At the end of June, a farm in Norfolk will be sending 10,000 chickens to slaughter, and Little Hen Rescue are hoping that all will be rehoused to members of the public throughout Britain. If anyone has ever thought of keeping chickens before, now would be the time to step forward. Although this may seem a daunting task, Little Hen Rescue are promising to guide every hen-keeping novice through all the initial steps. They are asking for a donation of £1.50 for each chicken ‘brought’, but more is always welcome, (and anyone who wishes to donate, but not get a hen is also welcome to do so, the website has details of their PayPal account. ). I asked Emma what the chickens are like, half expecting a description of severely traumatised birds, but she was quick to prove me wrong; “They are gorgeous! Where do you start? They are more friendly than any other breed of hen I’ve found. They are such loving little pets and considering what they’ve been though, they give you their all”


One characteristic to be expected of the chickens is the state of their feathers – or the lack of them. Unfortunately, this is just another by product of being a battery hen. Little Hen Rescue have already factored this in, and have a web page with instructions for how to construct fleeces and jumpers to keep the birds warm while their feathers grow back – which they always do. Helpfully, there are also pictures of the hens wearing breast plate knitted jumpers and fleeces to show you the finished ‘product’. I defy you not to be moved by these photos.

Illustration by Jessica Pemberton

One thing worth remembering if you want to go ahead and adopt a hen is that you will need a garden in which they can roam, and preferably you will need to construct or purchase a secure, fox-proof chicken house with an attached run. Amelia’s Magazine is not usually in the habit of acting as a broker in the sale of chickens, but then an appeal like this does not come along every day. If there is anything that you can do to help, get in contact with Little Hen Rescue and help a feathered friend.

Illustration by Jessica Pemberton

Phuong-Cac Nguyen left America more then two years ago to start a new life in São Paulo, visit this Brazil`s ginormous metropolis and the main economic and cultural center in the country. She went away with the purpose of sending contributions about the city to blogs and websites such as and However she found in town countless choices of how to spend her free time and decided to compile her favorite hidden Sao Paulo haunts into a brilliant guidebook. It`s been a hit between locals, so in order to find out more about how she came up with the project we chatted almost endlessly about the book – but also about Sao Paulo`s social problems, the paulista lifestyle and Brazilian politics.


I didn`t get if you`re American, Brazilian…??
Oh ok. Could you tell us a little about the book? It seemed very interesting. Loved the layout too.?
It comes from two years living there. While writing for coolhunting and joshspear, i picked up a ton of info. Also a lot of it came about naturally – I’m a super curious person, so to keep myself entertained I went discovering the city and chatted with people and as I did all this stuff about the city came out and I had all this info that I didn`t know what to do with and knowing that there was a lack of this type of book for Sao Paulo, I figured it would be a good idea to do a book and share these gems.??
That`s great! I`m looking forward to reading it.
?Thank you! The majority of the people who worked on it are Brazilians who live in São Paulo. I wanted to present a true insider’s view.
So you went to Sao Paulo by yourself and then started with the freelance jobs?
?Yes. I had saved up some money from my previous gigs. Jobs in the U.S.
And what made you choose São Paulo??
It was one of my stops during a South American trip I made in 2006, and when I got there I felt at home – first time in my life I have ever felt that way about a place.
Where are you from in the US?
?I am from L.A. California.
That`s a big change! What do you love the most about SP and the least??
Most: I haven’t figured it out totally, but I think it’s the sense that something is always happening, always changing, always moving, and I like being a part of that.
Least: the pollution – my acne has come roaring back as a result.
Yes it`s horrible! But isn`t this movement sentiment a thing that all the big cities have it? This idea that there`s always something going on?
?Yes, i guess so, but I’ve been to lots of big cities… there’s just something different about Sao Paulo’s movement… maybe it’s because it’s still developing yeah – and I also love the people there.
What do you love about them?
?People are so nice! And people from other Brazilian states complain that they think Paulistanos are snobby (back to the whole big-city thing), but I have met so many amazing people there, people from all over Brazil come to SP.

D-Edge Club


I think Paulistas are the best!
?hahah are you a Paulista???
Yes I am! But I`ve lived most of my life in Porto Alegre.?
Ah people there are so nice too! A lot of my friends are from the south.
So you got to learn some Portuguese??
Yes. I’m fluent.
Cool! Was it hard??
Believe me, after dealing with the printer, I am definitely fluent! Yes it was hard – but after about 6 months I was able to be understood.
??So that was quick!
?I knew my Portuguese was up to speed when I could complain with everyone else about the traffic and pollution haha.
??Hahaha. And that`s when you became a real paulista!?
Hahahah. Exactly!
Awesome! So do you plan of translating the book to Portuguese?
?Yes, that’s in the plans. the book is practically sold out in Brazil already, even in English!
Uau that`s amazing!
Yeah I’m shocked really.
Where did you use to live in SP??
Vila Madalena
So how would you describe SP`s like in a more detailed way? Because the idea people usually have from Brazil is from being a country with beaches everywhere, girls in bikini drinking caipirinha and dancing samba the whole day. But we both know that`s not true.?
Definitely. Well, SP is a modern city where you can get gourmet olives imported from Italy and we get stuck in traffic jams like in NYC, but combine that with a strong Brazilian culture and you have a totally unique place.

Museu De Arte Moderna

So in the book you describe the main neighborhoods??
Yes.?Restaurants, bars, boutiques, hidden gems.??
So would you say it`s targeted more to SP`s high class?
?Noooo! It’s for people working in the creative industry, people like artists, designers, architects, writers.
So not high class – when I think of high class I think of super rich and my readers are not. But they are by no means unsuccessful, if that makes any sense.
It totally makes sense. Do you plan on writing another guide??
Writing i don’t know but producing more under the Total series, yes. I have to take a rest before I would consider writing another one… I’d like to hire someone else to write the next one!
?Any idea for cities??
Yes – we’ll stick with South American cities. But as for what city next, that will have to be kept under wraps for now.
So could you tell me what are your favorites places in SP? Like a top 5 maybe?
?Bar do Museu, praça por do sol, filial, the historical center of the city, the Arab area of the Bras neighborhood. And of course I love my neighborhood! But that would be 6 and you asked for 5.

Loja do Bispo

So you`re still living in SP? Thought you were back in LA.
?I’m back in L.A. to handle the business end of the book, but will be back in SP this year. All my things are still there!??
How do Brazilian people usually react when you say you`re American? Probably a silly question, but I`m just curious.?
They are super curious, they love Americans and being Asian on top of that, I’m definitely an interesting specimen. They wonder why the heck I moved to SP when they all want to move to America!??
Exactly! Did you get to follow Brazilian politics? What do you think about it?
?I did a little bit, yes, and I find it fascinating the infamous bureaucracy, the corruption, but I see that there are also some good hearts in the government, trying to work against those two aspects. And it’s working, because Brazil is growing and being accepted into the worldwide market.
Really? Do you truly believe in that?
?Yes – you see it more on a local level. I don’t really understand national politics as much, my Portuguese is weak in this area, but nevertheless even though Brazilians are required to vote, and we aren’t in the U.S. but yet we’re infinitely more involved when it comes to campaigns, i find that Brazilians should take a deeper interest in helping to shape change…. but it’s complicated because they don’t trust the government. This is a sentiment that many Brazilians share with me, that they would in fact love to be more involved but they see it as kind of hopeless.
Yes that`s exactly what I think. It`s one of the reasons that made me leave together with crime as well, which it`s related, of course.?
Yes, definitely. The crime is insanely bad compared to America. I think this is why Paulistanos are so special… they have to deal with all of this and yet they are able to maintain a happy nature and positive view on life. This is amazing to me. I love SP with all its faults, I have gotten days where I wanted to pick up and move somewhere else because I was frustrated after hearing about a bounty hunter killing someone in my neighborhood, but I don’t because the city and its people have so much to offer
Yes totally. That`s what I`m always telling people about Brazilians: they can be miserable, completely poor, live in a shit hole, but they`re are smiling, cooking their Sunday barbecues and drinking their beer.
Yeah totally. In fact, what you say is what my friends say is the problem with Brazil, why things in government aren’t changing… instead of getting up and doing something about things, people don’t want to deal with it and rather focus on making churrasco. I can understand in a way.
Sad but true. Phuong thank you so much. Is there anything else you would like to say??Well I definitely would not have been able to do it without my team of photographers and illustrators! They believed in the project and as a result it shows through in the final product. That’s all!

Now, buy more about I know Surbiton quite well. It’s a place I associate with Waitrose, cost semi-detached houses, wife-swapping, Audis, Felicity Kendall’s loin-stirring fringe, and the Class System. Artistic notions don’t really seem to fit in this anodyne suburban mould.
And the good people of Surbiton probably don’t notice the gaping wound in their emotional channel. But here, in the valley of the shadow of death, cometh the man. A man with the vision to inject into their sterile lives the force of the creative spirit. And much calcium.

Robin Hutchinson graduated in Fine Art before Duran Duran discovered hair gel, a bit conceptual and performancey, and then embarked on life’s great journey. Decades later, he’s a happily married man who drinks a lot of Pinot Grigio and follows his arty heart. Ha has an amazing knack for getting people in authority to do things. One day, he decided that Kingston needed a theatre, and turned himself into a one-man lobby, pestering the Council and developers for years, until it was done, with the beautiful result of the Rose Theatre, a rounded Shakespearean structure that keeps it real with proper plays and comedy.
Then he decided to celebrate the life of photography legend and Kingstonian Eadweard Muybridge with a 20ft projection onto the facade of Kingston Police Station, located opposite Muybridge’s birthplace. A projection of Muybridge’s work, followed by a creepy-as-hell pair of eyes looking out across the town, framed rectangular, as though from a burqua. Behold surveillance society, and trust in society laid bare not in a gallery setting, but on Kingston’s High Street, with people strolling by to drink beer or buy kebabs.

So here’s a chap who likes a little confrontation, and wants the populace to let some Apollonian/Dyonysian into their lives. So maybe you’re wondering where the calcium fits in with this…
Robin (who, given the right costume, could easily pass for a Marvel supervillain), tells me of his Damascus moment. One afternoon, while having his car fixed up at Kwik-Fit next door, he popped into The Lamb for a pint and thought he’d try a selection from the deli counter. Yes, deli-counter! This would be a major revelation for anyone who remembers the way the pub used to be; an intimidating grotto of dirty looks for non-regulars, shifting Carlsberg-flavoured water to a single-digit client-base who would ruminate each afternoon on the finer points of Daily Star stories. Maybe a dartboard by the door to the ladies, maybe a jar of pickled onions – it’s all the stuff of legend, now (except for the huge plastic letters of the SKOL sign that adorn the side of the pub, in memoriam).
Deeply inspired by the warmth of fledgling Landlord and Lady, Adam and Liz, and the quality fare on offer (largely sourced from a relative’s Dorset farm), Robin decided firstly that the pub’s internal revolution should be advertised to the wider public, and that the wider public was deserving of a revolution of its own.

He admits that the first Homage De Fromage event was dominated by Robin’s personal friends, and was fairly low-key. However, by the time I discovered Surbiton’s Cheese Underground, months later, things were a little more lively, even unhinged. At the end of a busy evening, I had travelled to the pub to meet a couple of friends who were already cheesed up. When I arrived, they were building a monorail course out of straws and sellotape, for the passage of a tiny straw and sellotape basket, housing a pickled onion (you see, pickled onions aren’t wrong per se – it’s all about the context). At the end of the course, the basket landed in a tray of water and was suddenly deemed a boat. Well done, I said, but it was no good – I was near sober, whilst they had not only imbibed more than me, but had also been in the zone since 7.30 sharp. It seemed to make perfect sense to them that pickled onions should need transportation. I saw so clearly the dichotomy between us: I was just a citizen of the State, whereas they were engines of creation. They had the same spark that enabled the invention of the Artesian Well, pyramid-construction techniques, or the aquaduct. I would have to get in on the act from the beginning of the evening to attain this enlightened state. Nothing could stop them!… Except the end of licensed opening hours, or running out of chutneys.

Let me tell you how Homage De Fromage works: Claim your table (you’ll probably have to book, these days), pay your money, enjoy your cheese-platter (themed on a region of the British Isles) while examining your cheese-menu and discussing your observations with your cohorts, fill in your answers to the quiz which nobody seems to care about, then partake in the month’s challenge.

The cheese, obviously, is a big focus, and Adam and Liz put in the research to get the most exquisite and diverse cheeses from each region. There’s usually a bit of Goat’s, a bit of Blue, and some Brie-like, as well as the more familiar types. But this isn’t a foodie review, and the cheese is not what it’s all about. It’s the challenge, the problem-solving.
The challenge that I had walked in on yielded brilliant results, all put together in around half an hour. Little cars with olives for wheels and toothpicks for axles, a hot air balloon, rafts, a glider. And this is exactly what Robin wanted to see. It’s Art, but not as we know it.

For Art’s greatest achievement can only be shining the light of imagination into the hearts of ordinary men and women. Robin’s strategy for achieving this is so simple, yet it achieves so much for its very directness. A little of society’s familiar lubricant, alcohol, followed by the gustatory excitement and discussion that only the complexity of cheese can bring, and then the simple laying down of a gauntlet.

The month that followed the transport-design forced each table-team to create a Wicker Man, which was then burnt in the beer garden as the horde of possessed Suburbitonians chanted and danced, and occasionally gestured the pretence that it was ironic. A month later came the command to build a whale, using only blue sheets of A4, straws, sellotape and bravado. The variety of approach was broad. Some built a skeleton first, some were cartoony, one had a little Jonah sitting in it’s mouth, two used a live human as the basis of the beast, One referenced the evolutionary ancestry of the whale with ambulocetus features. And the room was filled with love.

The most recent event had the challenge of designing a work of public sculpture, specifically an alternative to Wallinger’s big horse, planned for the mouth of the Channel Tunnel. There wasn’t a single half-hour proposal that I didn’t prefer to the Wallinger. Just for the sheer ridiculous Pythonesque and throwaway ethos that infused each work. And Bacofoil was the medium of the day. Shiny, shiny.
(Apologies, dear reader, but there’s no way I can get through this feature without the words “You had to be there!”)…You had to be there.

Homage De Fromage is an evolving project. Or maybe the trunk of a tree of projects. In the last four months, popularity has shot through the roof, with the April event being fully booked before the March event had finished. The clientele is changing, too, with younger people and artier people increasingly following (that’s right, following) les petits bourgeoises into this vibrant new scene. Robin is planning to harness this force, with plans to build a scaled-up model of the board game Mouse Trap on the beer garden, and a community art project, called My Life In A Box, in which anyone and everyone is invited to represent their life inside a cardboard box measuring 25x25x7cm. Effectively, the man is luring people into Kingston’s underweight cultural life with cheese. A mousetrap will make a very fitting monument to Hutchinson’s methods.
But is it Art? Proper, capital-A Art? Does it need to justified in relation to The Death of the Author, Public Art Theory, Art Brut, Relational Art, blah, blah? Is Robin a Rirkrit Tiravanija of the non-gallery-dwelling suburban breed?

Robin gives the impression that Art is nowhere near as crucial as his real buzzword – Creativity. Art is almost a hang-up, totem of the stagnant and the done, whereas what matters is the force that drives creation. That’s why everything ends up in the bin at the end of Cheese Night; no debris shall slow the passage of creation, as it joyfully gushes downstream in half-drunk flux.

For some reason, this involves girls wearing false moustaches. And they look good.

You can involve yourself in the Homage on the website, or the facebook. Why not go the extra mile and help out the Mousetrap, or put your life in a box.

It helps to have a few aces up your sleeve when you’re trying to make it in the fashion/art world these days. In which case you wouldn’t want to be the one staring across the table into the lovely poker face of this particular card shark. French Illustrator extraordinaire Coco, healing has stacked the decks with talent and expertise in razor sharp and uber feminine illustrations in magazines like Nylon, Slurp, Russh, Wonderland, years of fashion consulting for designers, PR work for Valery Demure, and most recently her own line of luxurious silk scarves called Forget-Me-Not.

Coco’s graceful drawings appear in Illustration books, displays for London and Barcelona Fashion Week, Karl Lagerfield’s AW ’09 catalogue and milliner Yasmin Rizvi’s turbans. Sitting down with the skillful drafter and in a plaiting of French and English we talked about her unique perspective on what it takes to stay in the game these days.


“I started out studying at the Ecole Des Beaux Arts in Dupres but after that I didn’t draw for ages. I was actually working in fashion PR in Paris when Valery Demure asked me to do some illustrations for an invitation. Then a few magazines asked me to do some artwork for them. Once my pieces were out there, I sent out a quarterly update to the right people. Valery, by then a good friend, suggested I do the scarves and three months later I was doing it and now she’s my agent.”

Fearless and instinctive, I suppose that’s the kind of nerve you’d need to contend in the notoriously fickle world of fashion.
“When someone offers you to do it and you say ok, that’s one thing. But to come up with something on your own and to push it is too anxiety ridden. I admire those people that can do it. To be able to say merde ou oui (sure or piss off) to someone. ”


Do you feel your connections and savvy in that milieu helped you avoid some of the pitfalls most young designers face?
“So many things can go wrong but you’re on your own so you have to follow up on everything yourself. People say it’s so easy but it’s a nightmare to find the right factory. Sometimes the graphics look dirty if they’re not done to a high standard. After 6-10 tests I’m still not happy with them. Then there’s transport, corrections, it gets expensive. But that’s not really a big surprise because I’ve worked with so many young designers. Mais le vivre et le faire….(But living the life and doing it are not the same thing).”

What suggestions would you offer to designers/illustrators new to the game?
“Above all you must do it with your own identity and always be thinking ‘who will buy this?’ As soon as you do one thing, everyone thinks that all you do until you prove otherwise. If you do just one thing without taking risks you’ll end up like a rat. It could be just a poster or a book.”

“When sending your work to the PR’s you need to make an effort, to think about the little things and make it easy for them… like including simple texts. And you have to keep at them. I understand why designers are so stressed out. Often they’re timid by nature. I put everything I have into it. The successful ones are really aggressive and they put the effort the whole year through rather than laying back. Everything goes so fast these days it’s hard to know who’s coming or going.”


The internet must play an enormous influence in the role of the consumer. What can you tell us about the quickening pace of the fashion industry?
“Buyers are some of my favorite people to work with, they can be so much more informed and creative than they’re given credit for. When I first showed my silk scarves I didn’t tell them they were my designs, just so I could get their honest opinion. In commercial showrooms I got to know a lot about their customers through them.”

“The client comes super early in the season (AW 09) and they know exactly what pieces they want by summer. They used to depend on magazines and whatever they dictated. But now they’re seeing it all, instantaneously. They’re informed and decisive. My S/S ’09 line of scarves went into Colette immediately. I get orders from the shops in April and they want it by June because that’s when their August display windows are being designed.”


I hope are readers are keeping up because this is very much the nature of many a conversation with designers these days. Delivery dates are creeping forward so fast it’s all most designers can do to keep up, much less concentrate on the fun of designing.
Where did the designing process start for you
“I can’t do just one thing or I get bored. I think that comes from my education in France, although it can stifle you at first by forcing you to take certain paths before you’ve had a chance to develop or explore. But you had to be an academic to do well in the arts, you have to do one thing exceptionally well. There had to be an identity behind the facade… which always fades. I need to observe and understand before attempting it but because I had a good technical base I could just move on to anything I fancied, like designing a font. ”


A box of samples from the manufacturer have arrived and there’s an excitement about seeing what surprises lay inside. She unfolds a giant piece of diaphonous silk with 8 or of the same print, each slightly different in hue or tone. She inspects it closely, turning it over delicately in her hand.

These gorgeous silk scarves you’ve done are so rich and detailed. Is it easy enough to get your hyper-fine drawings onto them?
“No, actually it’s extremely difficult. There’s a massive difference from screen to product. Firstly I chose to work on an unusually large size square so you can wear it plenty of different ways. Also silk absorbs ALOT so its very difiicult to get details because the silk just drinks the inks up. It’s important to have the back look good too, not blotchy but properly bled through. When Barney’s buys you and puts you on the shelf next to Pucci it better be good.”

Know your opponent. Something to keep in mind. When rising stars are quick to burn out it can be invaluable to do your homework. And this triple-threat artist from France has a full house of extra sweet designs on her newest collection of scarves forget-me-not available at her online store going live next week so check back with us here for details. Because as the French are fond of saying, ‘On ne vie pas sur l’air et l’eau fraiche’….We can’t live on love and fresh water alone.
Merci Coco!

Categories ,drawing, ,fashion, ,illustration, ,London Fashion Week, ,pr, ,Yasmin Rizvi

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Amelia’s Magazine | Corinne Day 1965 – 2010

ADZ, capsule drug illustrated by Jess Stokes

Whilst eco-couture has always been ahead of the times in terms of sustainability, click it’s often been left behind in the style stakes, unable to compete with mainstream, high fashion. Gradually though, a new breed of designer has emerged who is equally concerned with creating a cutting edge aesthetic as they are utilising sustainable and organic materials.

At the forefront of this movement is Ada Zanditon, whose designs experiment with shape and texture in a way that is unsurprising once you learn that she originally interned with Alexander McQueen and Gareth Pugh. After establishing her own eco-luxury womenswear line in March 2008, Ada has gone on to raise awareness of everything from eco fashion to politics through the likes of the Think Act Vote campaign. Ada took the time to answer a few questions for us about the inspiration behind her new range ADZ, and the future of eco fashion. ? 

ADZ S/S 2011

You’ve really established yourself as a pioneer of eco-fashion, giving the movement a younger, sexier image than it had in the past. How did you go about this?  
I think that I had two very strong passions that I was determined to make work together – fashion and sustainability. I enjoy the innovative aspect that comes into every part of the process, my main how-to part of it I think comes from a basic viewpoint that anything is possible. It’s equally possible to make a beautiful fashionable dress from an ecological material as it is from one that is not. It’s equally possible to create fashion that considers its full life span and even decay as it is to create something that does not. It’s a question of awareness, choice and aesthetics. 

Tell us about your new collection, ADZ?  
ADZ by Ada Zanditon is the bridging line to my main collection, it’s contemporary, resort urban wear that combines strikingly unique prints with casual yet sophisticated pieces that are focussed around bold geometric detailing in fluid soft fabrics such as tencel, silk jersey and chiffon. The SS 2011 debut collection of ADZ is titled Nebulayan. My inspiration came from creating illustrations of satellite images of the Himalayas mountain range which I then layered with Hubble telescope imagery of deep space nebulae. We now have achieved the technology to see the Earth from space and also to see deep into outer space. I like the idea of contrasting these perspectives with each other. 

ADZ, illustrated by Aniela Murphy

How do you cope with the volume of work and your nerves in the build up to London Fashion Week? Any trade secrets?
I am always aware that I am so fortunate to be in the position to be running my own label, I don’t really want to complain. Everyday always has its challenges, but I try to see that as opportunity. I think gratitude is vastly underrated these days…. don’t you? 

Absolutely! Amelia’s magazine have always been a big fan of your illustrations, any plans to design your own prints based on your work?
Actually, all my prints are based on my illustration work and photography and as well as that I use watercolour then layer all these elements together. ? 

ADZ, illustrated by Natsuki Otani

Musician Viktoria Modesta is your muse; how did you end up working together? You’ll be contributing to her showcase next month; what will that involve?
Soon after we first met we found we had a good creative rapport. I think Viktoria has incredible elegance and style with a real sense of grace. As for the showcase – I don’t want to give to much away but it will be a great evening. 

How do you think the public can be convinced of the importance of sustainability? Do you think there is more designers, magazine editors and celebrities could be doing to highlight its significance?
I only think the planet can truly convince people of the importance of sustainability. I’m sure most people living on the coast of Bangladesh are highly convinced that we need to live in a more sustainable way as they are effected daily by climate change. However, I think that people can encourage and inspire, and have a really good try at convincing. What worries me, though, is that catastrophic events only really shake people into action. I think everyone in every walk of life can do more, no matter what you do.

To see the entire ADZ S/S 2011 collection, visit Ada’s website.
To read more about Think Act Vote, see our interview with Amisha Ghadiali here.

Corrine Day pictured in 1996

The fashion world is in mourning over the loss of another of its brightest stars. Corinne Day, decease the fashion photographer known for shooting Kate Moss at the beginning of her career, information pills has died aged 45.

Her documentary-style photography shook up the fashion world in the nineties, mind at a time when the industry was looking for an antidote to the gloss and glamour of the eighties.  

Born in Ickenham, west London, Day she was raised by her grandmother (her mother, she said, ran a brothel, and her father was not in the picture), and after failing school, worked as a courier. A chance meeting with a photographer led to a short-lived modeling career – Corinne knew she was no cover girl – but through it she met her lifetime partner Mark Szaszy, who taught her how to use a camera.  

It was behind the lens that Corinne shone, and whilst modeling in Milan, she started snapping ‘what she knew’ – her friends – teenage models, hanging around cramped, dingy flats, dressed in charity shop finds.  

This was before the age of street style or fashion bloggers, where anyone with a camera and a passport could jet set around the world, snapping chic from the sidewalks. Her subversive shots caught the eye of Phil Bicker, then art director of The Face, who commissioned a shoot that was to become the stuff of fashion legend.  

The story of Corinne and Kate is well-documented. Day saw promise in a polaroid of the wannabe model, just 16. The ‘3rd Summer of Love’ in July 1990, saw Kate frolicking on a beach in Camber Sands, dressed in a mismatch of high-end designer and cheap market finds. The shoot caused a sensation. The two became firm friends, sharing a flat for three years – this closeness was something Corinne shared with many of her subjects, enabling her to capture them at their most natural.  

Shoots for Vogue followed – (Day was the first to shoot Kate for one of her countless Vogue covers) with Corinne teaming up the stylist Melanie Ward to create the now infamous ‘waif’ look. Her ‘Underexposed’ sequence saw Kate Moss languishing in a bedsit festooned with fairy lights, skinny in saggy tights, creating outrage in the national press for encouraging anorexia and heroin use.  

But nothing could stop Day’s rise to stardom. Her stark, fearlessly honest photographs welcomed in a new mood suited to a country recovering from a recession.  
After a decade of supermodels with their Amazonian bodies and diva demands, Day’s idea of perfection was imperfection. She hated retouching photographs, and favoured quirky models with only traces of makeup, exposed to natural light. Her shots of street kids in second-hand clothes summed up the anti-glamour aesthetic of Generation X. It was an answer to Seattle’s grunge movement – but uniquely British, and effortlessly cool.   

Influenced by the work of documentary artists like Nan Goldin, she sought to capture people’s “most intimate moments”, when “we’re not having such a good time”. This extended to her own life, when she was diagnosed with a brain tumour in 1996, and asked her partner to photograph her battling with the illness. The result was published as ‘Diary’ in 2001.  

After recovering from her first bout of illness, Corinne continued to shoot for fashion magazines, as well as documenting her own friends and family. Her work was commissioned by the National Portrait Gallery, exhibited everywhere from the V&A to the Saatchi, and even the subject of a BBC Four documentary.  

Corinne will always be known as the girl who kick-started heroin chic, but her legacy will be something greater. Writing in The Telegraph, stylist Belinda White commented how, growing up as a working class girl, she “had no business” looking at Vogue and “couldn’t relate” to the stories on the magazine pages. The Kate Moss shoot made her “stop in her tracks” and realize that for the first time, normal girls ‘like her’ could be a part of this world.  

Corinne Day’s photographs democratized fashion, and made it ‘real’ and relevant to a girl on the street. Only under her guise could Kate Moss, a short, flat-chested girl from Croydon, rise up the echelons of the fashion world.  

All images © Corinne Day

Categories ,3rd Summer of Love, ,Amazonian, ,Britain, ,Camber Sands, ,corinne day, ,Croydon, ,fashion, ,Generation X, ,grunge, ,Ickenham, ,Kate Moss, ,london, ,Mark Szaszy, ,Melanie Ward, ,Milan, ,Nan Goldin, ,national portrait gallery, ,Obituary, ,Phil Bicker, ,photography, ,Saatchi Gallery, ,seattle, ,The Face, ,Underexposed, ,va, ,vogue

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Amelia’s Magazine | Tent London 2013 Review: Best Wall Art, Furniture and Lighting

SPW additions lampshade
Lampshade by Parris Wakefield Additions.

I’ve already brought you the best soft furnishings and homewards from Tent London 2013 at the Truman Brewery, and now here is a round up of wall art, furniture and lighting, with a toy and notebooks thrown in for good measure.

Parris Wakefield Additions sofa
Parris Wakefield Additions is a new brand from husband and wife team Howard Wakefield and Sarah Parris, busy graphic designers once based in central London and now living in rural Norfolk, where they have enough space for an in-house studio. They are inspired by a combination of colour palettes found in the natural world and those of favourite paintings (a huge pastel rug design is based on a famous Hockney painting), resulting in eye catching pattern and colour combinations. Their computer generated abstracts appear on lampshades, wallpaper and fabrics. I love the ethical side to the Parris Wakefield Additions business – this upcycled 20′s armchair (above) was reupholstered by Out of the Dark, a charity that trains youth in new skills.

Rebay lighting installation
This super fun lighting installation by Rebay attracted a great deal of attention on instagram, though I still haven’t figured out it’s purpose since all attempts to Google information bring up ebay.

Geometric prints on lampshades by tamasyn gambell
Cockpit Arts based textile designer Tamasyn Gambell has been busy expanding her decorative offering: her geometric prints now appear on fabulous big hanging lampshades.

Blown glass pendant lights - curiousa and curiousa
Once again I was wowed by blown glass pendant lights from Curiousa and Curiousa.

Tent London Furniture Magpie lighting
The Furniture Magpies breathe new life into discarded items. This year they have turned their attention to old lampshade frames to create these pretty knitted lights that come in a range of jewel colours.

Lizzie mcullen at work on a mural
Illustrator Lizzie Mary Cullen was at work on a chalk mural when I walked past. This prolific artist creates bespoke imagery for many big brands.

Designer KSW studio
Kristjana S Williams has launched a new range of wallpapers featuring her instantly recognisable patterns; combinations of bold natural imagery and stark colourings.

Bear wall art by Kosmos Project from Poland
This 3D bear wall art is by Kosmos Project of Poland, a design studio set up by Ewa Bochen and Maciej Jelski.

Fibre glass stool inspired by an apple juice bottle, by Sit furnishings
Snarfle inspects a fibre glass stool that features tactile nobbles inspired by those on an apple juice bottle. Sit Furnishings is a new brand from Katherine Blamire and established designer Timothy Sheward, creating industrially forged products with a distinctly human touch. I was most impressed by their offering.

wood seat by Ruskasa from Taiwan
At the Taiwanese showcase we both loved this super smooth woven wood seat by Ruskasa.

Wooden magazine stand and stool by Moissue of Taiwan
This tactile wooden magazine stand by Moissue was also a winner: it neatly doubles as a stool.

horse shaped toddler stools by tamasine osher
What a clever idea; I so want one of these ergonomic easy-to-mount horse shaped toddler stools for Snarfle when he gets a bit older. Multi talented designer Tamasine Osher trained in architecture before taking an MA in furniture design whilst also working as an art director at a gallery.

Norwegian wooden toy by Permafrost
On the subject of things for children, this wooden toy by industrial designers Permafrost is utterly Norwegian and bloody brilliant: an oil rig with helipad and detachable helicopter: oil tankers also available in this prototype collection.

Sukie recycled books
Rescued paper notebooks made an attractive wall display at the Sukie stationery stand. The designer behind Sukie is a man, which goes somewhat contrary to expectations. Apparently most people expect him to be female and Japanese.

Next up: my review of the Three Four show further up Brick Lane. Read it here. Follow me on instagram for a first sneak peak at the design discoveries I make.

Categories ,2013, ,Brick Lane, ,Cockpit Arts, ,Curiousa and Curiousa, ,Ewa Bochen, ,Furniture, ,Furniture Magpie, ,Howard Wakefield, ,Katherine Blamire, ,Kosmos Project, ,Kristjana S Williams, ,Lighting, ,Lizzie Mary Cullen, ,Maciej Jelski, ,Moissue, ,Norwegian, ,Out of the Dark, ,Parris Wakefield Additions, ,Permafrost, ,poland, ,Rebay, ,review, ,Ruskasa, ,Sarah Parris, ,Sit Furnishings, ,Snarfle, ,stationery, ,Sukie, ,surface design, ,Taiwan, ,Tamasine Osher, ,Tamasyn Gambell, ,Tent London, ,Timothy Sheward, ,Truman Brewery, ,Upcycled, ,Wall Art

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Amelia’s Magazine | Valentines Day 2013: Card Ideas and Prints for Gifts

A Book Of Hearts by Sarah Morpeth seek and adore
It’s creeping up on us fast once more: the day you either love or hate. Wondering what to give as an expression of your feelings on Valentines Day? Here I present to you some great ideas for handmade cards and screen prints to send to your beloved one. Beautiful typography, supremely clever paper cutting and adorable lovebirds reign supreme.

Book of Hearts Sarah Morpeth
This gorgeous Book of Hearts by paper artist Sarah Morpeth is available from Seek and Adore: with hearts, birds and leaves bursting out of the covers it makes a unique gift.

Kethi Copeland card
Fancy something a bit different? How about these beautiful printed notebooks inspired by a Dolly Parton song, created by Kethi Copeland of Cockpit Arts and available on Culture Label.

bex bourne love print
This pretty typographic print is by Amelia’s Magazine contributor Bex Bourne and does exactly what it says on the tin

Dereks Shop You are Yummy valentine card
Rebecca Crompton has created a collection of card designs for Derek Shop which would make a sweet token of love and appreciation. I particularly like YOU ARE YUMMY.

Kissing birds by Louise Jenkins
Kissing birds are forever a Valentines favourite: how about this delightful pair by Louise Jenkins?

Helen Lang All you need is love print
More song lyrics inspired this latest offering from artist Helen Lang, also featuring a pretty pair of birds: All You Need is Love comes in glossy black and shimmering gold foil.

Jessica Draws valentine card
Maybe your lover is a Valentines Day cynic? Then check out marmite cards‘ by Jessica Draws

The Aviary Floral Heart Gift Card
This gorgeously delicate floral heart design is from The Aviary and is available to buy on Not on the High Street.

Crafty Lou Love Papercut
I love this delicate papercut by Louise McLaren which features the word Love and the infinity symbol (as well as the all important two birds). Read a description of how Crafty Lou came up with this design here: fascinating!

Stacie Swift Dancing Foxes
Illustrator and contributor Stacie Swift stocks a lovely selection of alternative Valentines day cards on her etsy shop.

Chloe Douglass Valentine Card heart kitty
And if you prefer something a bit more traditionally cute how about this sweet kitty from contributing illustrator Chloe Douglass?

Tom Woolley ecard Valentines
What about that last minute panic attack, when you haven’t bought a thing? Then check out Tom Woolley‘s range of bright statement Valentines‘ ecards right here.

Fancy being featured in one of my regular round ups? Make sure you follow me on twitter @ameliagregory: most of these artists responded to open callouts for Valentines ideas. Next up: ideas for unique and individual Valentines gifts.

Categories ,All You Need is Love, ,Bex Bourne, ,Book of Hearts, ,Chloe Douglass, ,Cockpit Arts, ,Crafty Lou, ,Culture Label, ,Derek Shop, ,Dolly Parton, ,Helen Lang, ,Jessica Draws, ,Kethi Copeland, ,Lasercut, ,Louise Jenkins, ,Louise McLaren, ,Lovebirds, ,Marmite card, ,Not On The High Street, ,Papercut, ,Rebecca Crompton, ,Sarah Morpeth, ,Seek and Adore, ,Stacie Swift, ,The Aviary, ,Tom Woolley

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