Donna Wilson hails from Scotland but set up shop in London after graduating from the Royal College of Art in 2003. Starting out, she created odd knitted creatures that sold out immediately and since then she’s expanded her business to include a collection of curious cushions, colorful blankets, cozy scarves, gloves, and hats, and an assortment of whimsical wares, just to name a few. Each enchanting piece is made by her hardworking team that knits, sews, packs, and sends off each design to shops and individuals in some 25 countries. Continuing her pursuit of creating handcrafted treasures, Wilson won ‘Designer of the Year’ in 2010 at Elle Decoration’s British Design Awards, a much coveted award amongst designers. Let’s see what inspires this passionate creative in this week’s Friday Five.
1. Frankie Magazine
An Australian magazine featuring designers, illustrations, textiles, and creative people. It’s a little work of art, and I love the freshness and finding new illustrators and artists through it.
2. Musician Gideon Conn
I first saw him at Glastonbury playing in a little café tent, the audience were all so happy and doing actions to his song Pylons and Wires! A couple of years later he asked if I would supply the creatures for a video he was getting animated, and of course I accepted. The video is available here.
He is a true original, and I don’t know anyone else like him, or any other singer that can make me smile so much!! He recently played at my 10 year anniversary of the company; I was so proud to have him there!
3. Toshiko Horiuchi MacAdam
The Rainbow Net is a stunning interactive installation located at the Takino Suzuran Hillside National Park in Sapporo, Japan, all crocheted by hand! I would love to go there with my son. It looks so imaginative and playful!
4. Present & Correct
Present & Correct is a lovely blog and shop specializing in stunning stationery. I love the way everything is presented. There’s a vintage feel to it and he has such a good eye for finding odd objects and colorful treats. Some of his finds remind me of things we had as a child, which is why I think it appeals so much.
Pennan is a little fishing village near where I was brought up. It’s in the northeast of Scotland, and you get there after a beautiful scenic drive up and down hills through the country side. I have always loved Pennan ever since my grandma took me there when I was a girl. It’s so quaint with lots of little painted houses and an ancient harbor, and the thing I love about it is that it will never grow as it’s totally surrounded by cliffs. There was also a film set there called Local Hero which tells the story of a big business tycoon who wants to buy it and the locals who won’t let him!