07.09.2016 § Leave a comment
I have always admired the serenity and pureness of nature. As soon as my husband and I were finished with our schooling, we immediately moved to the quiet, spacious suburbia; never understanding ones desire to move to the big city. Many years and experiences later, my perception of city life began to shift and eventually (to my surprise) began to influence my work as a designer.
On one particular sales trip to Manhattan, I walked…a lot. While traveling amongst the noisy hustle and bustle of traffic, I stumbled upon a little wild flower rooted next to a wrought iron gate. The graceful flower was rising from a crack in the concrete, pushing its way toward the clear blue sky. The juxtaposition of the cement, the wrought iron and the plant created a texture that brought a smile to my face for the rest of the day. The peaceful experience made the echoes from city streets dissipate; leaving only the beautiful composition in my memory. From that day forward, I gained a different perspective of the urban environment and the magnificence held within it.
Then I began to travel. I was able to travel longer and more freely after my obligations of parenthood and elderly care were fulfilled. I discovered the joy of experiencing different cities, architecture, bridges, public transportation, vegetation, people, as well as cultures from around the world. I took photos, doodled, sketched, took notes, and made plans to enjoy outings with friends from different cities. I now fully understand the attraction society has to live within a metropolis.
Drawing inspiration from the energy and graphics of the urban landscape, the 18 new patterns in the fall 2016 Cityscape collection depict my experiences from the eccentric life of the big city.
Metropolis 4569 – Cityscape 4564 – Boulevard 4568
Boomtown 4564 – Metropolis 4569
Junction 6531 – Lexingtion 4221 – Lumen 1305 – Essanay 8220 – Selfridge 8940
Quote of the Day ~ 9
05.04.2016 § Leave a comment
“Traveling a million miles is greater than studying for ten years.”
In traditional Chinese culture the importance of experience is of greater value than any other form of education.
Equinox – Inspirations and Influences
19.11.2015 § Leave a comment
In the year 2008 I visited The Baccarat Museum in Paris, France. The museum was absolutely spectacular. Among the many crystals displayed inside, my attention gravitated towards an exhibit of exceptional glass bottles. Drawn to the evident cubist influence, each bottle was created with an intricate shape made from non-symmetrical facets.
After my visit, my mind was occupied with the idea of facets. I soon realized that my fixation began long ago. One particular recollection was about a contemporary ceramic artist I had met early in my career. His work consisted of modern tables created to look like folded paper. As a young, new entrepreneur, I was unable to afford the beautiful work of art I so desperately admired. I often find myself wondering what became of him and his work. My encounter with the ceramicist, among other experiences, collectively inspired my growing geometrical interest.
My original intention with Equinox was to create an asymmetrical tessellation of facets contradicted by the symmetrical repeat. My fascination with astronomy, stars, the Milky Way, and the indefiniteness of space paired with my curiosity with facets helped push my creative process for Equinox. The concept called for a textile with large repetitive facets surrounded by a star inspired design. Once the design was complete I was humbled by the success and overwhelming positive response. Moving forward into the next collection, I have been working on creating Equinox with a smaller repeat to offer a wide variety to designers.
Original Drawings and Inspirations
2014: Inspiration from a Cartoon
06.03.2014 § Leave a comment
As I look at this cartoon, the alarms in my head grow louder, telling me that I should not be sitting still. The message is very clear and true, especially considering what children do nowadays compared with how I grew up. I never owned a doll. My family did not own a television until I was in junior high school; we had a record player and a piano. I was always outside with neighboring kids playing and fighting for stones. Yes, stones. I loved stones. I still have a scar on my face from one of those fights. My mom told me I would hold onto the stones even when I fell asleep, and she could not unwrap my figures from them, I held them so tightly. « Read the rest of this entry »
New England Morning
25.10.2013 § Leave a comment
I flew in to New York City by noon on Tuesday for ACT’s annual conference, which lasted til five, then went to a business dinner, and got up early the second morning for more ACT meetings til three when I immediately caught a train to Providence, RI. It was a hectic two days.
The second morning when I got up, it was already dawn, and as I looked out the window, the water and fall scenery drew me in and brought instant serenity to my mind. Seeing the quiet bay and horizontal road dotted with red foliage and a tall chimney, I said to myself, “Ah, this is New England.” A native New Englander might not have recognized why this was so New England, but as an outsider, I could pick up on the subtle, yet distinct differences that made this scenery unique.
Brentano’s First Showroom at NeoCon
02.07.2013 § Leave a comment
At NeoCon 99.9% of the people I met recognized that we had a new showroom (one thought we had been there before), which is pretty good. With a showroom on a contract floor, I finally saw the full scope of NeoCon, meeting people from South Africa, Holland, China, Korea, and Japan, etc; many had just come to see the trends. I am glad our showroom attracted their eyes.
At NeoCon on the 10th Floor
21.05.2013 § Leave a comment
We will be meeting many, many people at NeoCon this year. I’ve been going in and out of the Merchandize Mart nearly a third of my life; this NeoCon I will probably meet more people than the sum of all the past years combined. At least I hope so.
NeoCon feels like a big party for our industry. I once heard a young party-loving girl say, “to go to a party is to see and be seen.” That “to be seen” part was new to me since I have never thought that way. In this case, to open a new showroom on the 10th floor of the Merchandise Mart is for sure an action “to be seen.”
There is a sense of confidence in taking this stride. It is important enough to benchmark Brentano’s history. We are excited about the opportunity to exhibit our style—yet nervous about the amount of work we have to put in to reach our goals. I am sure there is hard work ahead of us from here on out, but this leap will strengthen our capacity to design. I shall open my arms to greet the challenge, or I shall wither with the comfort of an easy career.
Advice for Textile Design Students
22.04.2012 § Leave a comment
I get questions about how to become a textile designer quite often, so I think it is worth recording some of my observations. Here are some of the most common questions that come up in my conversations with students:What preparation or skills are needed to become a textile designer?
Becoming a textile designer requires an education in textiles. A good place to start is to ask yourself where you’d like to focus your studies. A school like the Rhode Island School of Design, for example, focuses on the aesthetic aspects of design whereas NC State’s College of Textiles is one of the best programs for textile technology, the actual function of textiles. « Read the rest of this entry »
Genius and Mediocrity
21.10.2011 § 1 Comment
Merriam Webster listed a new trend word after Oct 6, 2011: “Mercurial” it says:
Many reports on the death of Steve Jobs – a man known for exceptionally high standards and an unconventional approach to business – described him as mercurial.
Mercurial means “characterized by rapid and unpredictable changes of mood.” It can be used to mean “temperamental” or “volatile,” but also suggests versatility.
It must not have been easy to keep up with Steve Jobs. He was a genius. « Read the rest of this entry »
20.10.2011 § 2 Comments
Stanford Commencement Address
The recent outpouring of grief dedicated to a business leader demonstrates that the admiration of celebrities has diversified over time. Say 50 years ago, weren’t singers and movie stars the ones who had fans? Later, there were sports figures, and now anyone can have fans: a princess, a politician or a businessman. It is all about publicity. Jobs appeared frequently in front of the press, developers and the public in general to introduce new products and expound upon his vision for the future. He became a public personality who followed his dream, the combination of whose talent and story became an icon to many people worldwide.
The commencement speech Steve Jobs gave at Stanford in 2005 is worth publishing in many places to inspire all of us. I will just quote some of it here: « Read the rest of this entry »