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A favourite with design blogs and lifestyle magazines, mother and daughter design duo MissPrint have been creating retro, eco hand printed wallpapers, lampshades and cushions for the likes of Liberty and Heals for almost five years. Having just published their book ‘Printed Pattern – A guide to printing by hand from potatoes to silk screens’ in August, Origin Interiors catches up with them to talk about their new venture, predictions for Autumn/Winter interiors and environmental credentials.
Since 2005, Yvonne Drury and daughter Rebecca have been running their screen printing company, stocking over 50 stores in 16 countries out of their cosy East London studio. With both designers gaining first class credentials in Printed Textile Design from the University of East London some twenty years apart, Yvonne and Rebecca share a love of pattern, illustration and mid-century designers like Lucienne Day. Their inspirations are reflected in their beautifully hand printed wares which have been featured in Elle Décor, Living etc and Real Homes amongst others.
How did MissPrint begin?
“Rebecca was at University and enjoying her studies, she just loves pattern and has a true talent for drawing and design. At the time, I wanted to move away from fashion textiles into the interior/furnishing design area, as this is where I feel true affinity. We launched MissPrint at the Chelsea Craft Fair (now Origin) in London in October 2005; it was a great experience for Rebecca as a student and being part of running a business gave her a great insight and motivation. It has now turned into a real family business, with Lee (my husband, Rebecca’s dad) doing most of the silk-screen printing, making wallpaper books and much more. Sophie (Rebecca’s sister) is a photographer so we are lucky enough to have her shoot all our designs, products and she also took all the photographs for our Printed Pattern book.”
Who was your first buyer?
“Our first exposure was at the Chelsea Craft Fair and on the first day of the show, soon after it opened to the public, a lovely lady came along. She was holding a newspaper cutting; it was an image of one of our lampshades, Button Bush in the oyster colourway. She knew exactly what she wanted and pointed to the Button Bush shade on display and said ‘I’ll have that one please’. We wrapped it up and packed it carefully, she paid and wished us a good show. It was a good start to our fist exhibition.”
How would you describe your design style?
“Contemporary timeless design, originating from hand drawn illustrations.”
What inspires you?
“We are inspired by our surroundings, the nature within the urban environment and the rich and diverse mix of cultures. We also love mid-century illustration, designers such as Lucienne Day and Scandinavian design.”
Your work is quite 50s-60s retro looking, do you think vintage and retro are long term trends in interior design?
“Trends come and go, and then come around again, each time with a different slant. Our designs do have a look of mid-century retro, however, they have been described as contemporary classics.”
What are your top trend tips for A/W interiors?
“Bold contemporary pattern, beautifully designed and well balanced. A combination of strong colours such as Cranberry Sorbet and Lime, alongside chic greys and charcoals.”
How do you create your prints?
“Our designs start their life in a sketchbook; this is where the ideas and concepts begin. Sketchbook drawings and illustrations are then developed into designs. The designs/prints are re-drawn and re-worked until we are completely happy with the outcome. When designing, we give great consideration to balance, scale, layout and colour.”
What are the latest technologies in printmaking?
There are constant advances in technology, in particular a move towards more environmentally friendly inks and processes.
MissPrint manufactures using environmentally friendly processes. Was this intentional and do you consider the company to be eco?
“We believe ecological issues to be very important. That is why wherever possible we have chosen to use and select processes and products that are environmentally friendly. Hence, our complete wallpaper range is PEFC certified, the paper is derived from sustainable forests, is printed with organic pigment inks, which are non-toxic, free of heavy metals and classed as non-carcinogenic. Fabrics are printed with water-based inks and all products are made in the UK. We recycle at every opportunity and promote the re-use of vintage items through our customised up-cycled furniture pieces.”
How did your book ‘Printed Pattern – A guide to printing by hand from potatoes to silk screens’ come about?
“A commissioning editor From A & C Black publishers approached us a couple of years ago, whilst we were exhibiting at Origin in Somerset House. She loved our products and designs and thought that our patterns would form a great basis for a book.”
Many of our readers are printing novices, would the book be appropriate for them?
“The book is beautifully illustrated, encouraging and suitable for anyone from absolute beginners to the more experienced. Informative and inspiring, a real must have for anyone who is interested in pattern, decorative design or printing.”
How easy is it to do your own printing?
“It can be really simple; there are many methods you can utilise to make your own printed patterns. You don’t necessarily need to have lots of specialist equipment; a few basic key items and you can be ready to begin. Our book helps explain what you will need and gives tips, advice and guidance to the printing process.”
MissPrint is stocked in a large number of stores worldwide, would you consider opening your own shop somewhere?
“It is something that we have considered and a possibility for the future, but we don’t have any definite plans at the moment.”
What have you got planned for this A/W?
“We are planning and developing a range of fabrics to complement our wallpaper range. We will have a woven fabric in the ‘Leaves’ design ready for September and also ‘Dandelion Mobile’ in the Douppion Silk, which will be available to buy by the meter. We also have a new collection called ‘Maze Hill’ which we will launch at Maison et Objet in Paris and at 100% Design London in September and we hope to have larger selections of fabrics including cottons ready for M&O Editeurs in January.”
‘Printed Pattern – A guide to printing by hand from potatoes to silk screens’ is available now; RRP £16.99. To find your local stockist of MissPrint wallpaper, cushions and lampshades visit Missprint.