There is something I admire so much about a signature look. A design concept executed really well. Irish textile designer, Aoife Mullane, is quickly becoming a shining star in the world of textile design because of her ability to produce just that. It’s a place some designers take a long time to get to, but Aoife has gotten there very quickly, which is a reflection of her design talent and dedication to her craft. I recently caught up with Aoife to find out about her design journey.
What inspires your work Aoife?
I live by the sea and so I gain a lot of inspiration from the local landscape. I like the idea of linking the interiors of a space to the exterior environment. My work is a combination of intricate detail with more organic fluid marks. I often collect patterned pebbles, or speckled bird’s eggs which inspire aspects of my prints.
Your work is visually striking, particularly because of your use of metallics. How did your aesthetic develop?
Mineralized rocks and geological matter inspired the use of metallics within my designs. Fragments of quartz, aluminum and copper can be seen throughout my fabrics and for me this is what makes my textiles so luxurious.
What steps are involved in your creative process?
My designs are deeply process driven; I consider my fabrics as artworks that are translated into textiles for interiors. My design process begins in my notebook. I make sketches of organic shapes such as pebbles, sea glass, and driftwood. I then begin to create patterns from them, considering the scale and placement. I scan these drawings and begin working with them on Photoshop. Once I have designed a print that I am happy with, my design is converted into a large mesh stencil or “screen”. I then work with this stencil using high-end effects such as foiling to create beautiful, hand rendered fabrics.
What advice would you give to designers thinking about starting their own business?
Work hard, and be passionate about your work. If you’re not passionate you won’t put in the hours that are required. I remain excited by my work by constantly developing new designs – as long as you are inspired, good work will come.
What has been your favorite project to work on to date?
I designed and supplied a number of textiles for a high-end beauty salon called OSLO Beauty in Dublin, Ireland. This was one of my first large commissions so it will forever stand out as a big achievement. I was given creative freedom in the project, which was so refreshing. The owners loved my signature style and trusted me.
Have you any exciting projects in the pipeline you’d like to share with us?!
I am currently collaborating with a luxury Irish-owned hotel which is being fully refurbished and rebranded. The owners want to reflect the strength of craft and design in Ireland. They’ve approached me to design some luxurious unique prints for the bedrooms. I am very excited to be a part of this project!
Ireland has a deep tradition of storytelling and craftsmanship. What Aoife does so beautifully is merge the narrative of the Irish landscape with her craft to produce striking contemporary work. If this is the work we’re seeing at the beginning of Aoife’s career, I’m excited to see what she does next. Remember the name Aoife Mullane, there is a lot more to come from her.
*Aoife can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org regarding commissions and international shipping.