Liberty Fabrics SS19

In The Studio: English Eccentrics

Discover the artistic inspirations behind Liberty Fabrics’ unapologetically eccentric new collection

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For Spring/Summer 2019, the Liberty Fabrics design studio drew inspiration from seven eclectic English muses. From a decadent prince regent to a pioneering botanist, an aristocratic poet and gardener, a globetrotting ‘60s musician, a contemporary artist, an activist actor and a beloved children’s author, each character in the diverse collection reflects the adventurous and disruptive spirit of Arthur Liberty.

Spanning the entire history of Liberty from the 1800s to the present day, these muses personify the artistic escapism of the eccentric. Each has enriched British culture with their creative legacy, contributing a rich body of work that continues to inspire.

The Poet Gardener

“A Castle Garden is an homage to the beautiful gardens at Sissinghurst Castle – it’s painted in gouache, with different varieties of flowers providing an abundance of colour.”

“There’s a one-colour section of the Sissinghurst garden called the White Garden, full of all different types of all-white flowers. With its dark background and absence of much colour coverage within the flowers themselves, we have inverted the usual classic Liberty floral style.”

“Virginia Meadow is a garden border, done in a camo style – so it becomes a texture of colour rather than being overtly floral and feminine.”

The Contemporary Artist

“Studio takes inspiration from everything an artist might have in their studio – including pencil scribbles, the artist’s spectacles, and even a little Jack Russell dog. It features fruit as a subtle nod to the still-life genre often painted by artists”

“For Celia we interpreted an archival painting in a new, modern way, through using our contemporary artist’s cross-hatching technique – it almost looks like cross stitch or embroidery.”

“Yorkshire Rose reinterprets a design in the archive through a contemporary illustrative style. We did it with coloured pencils, ensuring uneven coverage and shading to capture a real hand drawn aesthetic.”

The Children’s Book Author

“Dream Maker is inspired by a children’s author whose stories take you on a magical adventure. Taking inspiration from one of the books, we used a pencil to draw fantastical machinery shapes, then added colour with soft watercolour washes.”

“For Imagination we wanted to capture the excitement and sparking of ideas through the eyes of a child who reads and discovers all these wonderful stories. We created a geometric graphic design that had the power of magical fireworks. The designer collaged hand painted card, creating an organic naïve explosion of pattern.”

“Dapper Dogs was created for us by the artist OK David – he is also a children’s author. He wrote exquisite stories about each of the dogs within the print attending a party at the Pavillion.”

The English Rose

“Cambridge Lace is based on the fine technique of etched glass, and is drawn in fine liner pen.”

“Royal Rose was inspired by our visit to King’s College, Cambridge – we looked at the wooden carvings found within the interior architecture.”

“Love Lily celebrates our heritage through interpreting the mirrored Arts and Craft style in a contemporary way.”

The Pioneer Botanist

“Painted Journey is done very delicately in oil paint – it’s almost photographically painted. We wanted a print that would really celebrate the detailed botanical oil paintings of our muse Marianne North, a Victorian biologist and botanical artist.”

The Prince Regent

“Pavilion is inspired by George IV’s seaside residence, the Royal Pavilion in Brighton. We were particularly inspired by the opulent interiors: there’s an abundance of chinoiserie, block printed wallpaper, bamboo fretwork, dragon chandeliers – it’s very extravagant and beautiful.”

“This was an English take on the chinoiserie of the Royal Pavilion’s interiors – it features stylised roses and blossoms. Painted in gouache, it is an aesthetic fusion of Eastern and Western inspirations.”

The Globe-Trotting Musician

“Sounds of the Sea is a Bermudan shells design, inspired by our pop star musician. It’s painted in watercolour with added pencil detail, inspired by beautiful coastal shells – you can almost pick them up.”

“The softness of the watercolour helps to create a repeat that is conversational, but also really beautiful in its delicate detail. The shapes are arranged in a clever geometric – we added grains of sand to the background as a way of grounding and connecting these shapes.”

Liberty London

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