Friday, December 31, 2010

Design Therapy: Donna Wilson

 The delightfully quirky and playful work of Donna Wilson is getting major attention this year, and I am not at all surprised. Her work consists principally of knitted pieces and ceramics, showcasing Donna's furry friends and other characters in graphic and colorful designs. It is inspiring to see an artist make a such a success of themselves and do it with such unique charm.  A recent Guardian newspaper article tells us that "as with other success stories, it's part luck, talent and timing. Wilson, who grew up on a farm in the Scottish countryside, is purveyor of a kind of naive craftwork — all Nordic patterns, cosy knits and owls. Her products, including blankets, ceramics, scarves, gloves, hats and, from January, rugs, are warm, comforting and nostalgic, perfect for a Britain gripped by swingeing cuts."

The facts are that Ms Wilson established her company in 2003 after making "odd knitted creatures" for her degree show while studying at the Royal College of Art. After a sell out, Donna has built her brand through creating a collection of blankets, cushions, plush creatures and more. With a studio and production in London, Donna hails originally from Scotland and has some of her pieces manufactured in Galashiels, and other pieces are UK made where feasible. Read more about Donna here.
Donna was awarded the coveted Designer of the Year title, by the British Design Awards 2010 and this is what they had to say about her, "There’s no-one quite like textiles queen Donna Wilson. Her fabulous products include colourful cushions, tea-time accessories, playful ceramics and, of course, the starting point for the whole shebang — her collection of curious knitted creatures. In 2010, three new additions to the creature family have won our hearts: bashful ‘Wolfie’, who collects spoons; ‘Peanut’, who needs coaxing out of his shell; and ‘Puddle Man’, who likes to whistle when it rains. Imaginative, quirky, cool. Need we say more"

Bravo Donna for an awesome achievement and for your continued success! Donna is a wonderful example of a designer who has had deservedly worldwide success whilst still staying true to her ideals and roots. Her work is stocked in major department stores alongside being sold in small independent boutiques and maintains her unique style and commitment to handmade and local production. Want to find her work? Here's where to look, or hit her delightful online store.


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