Hello and welcome to "Five Minutes With...", our meet the maker blog feature. In each post, we'll be having a brief chat with one of our marvellous suppliers... about life, the universe, and everything. By which I mean craft and travel, obvs.
We work with a huge range of clever and creative maker-types, who craft all sorts of beautiful products, from ceramics, candles and cushions; through prints, pots and planters; to soap, stationery and... some other great things. Join us for a glimpse behind the curtain and see what makes them tick.
This month, we'll be talking to the very lovely Adele Woodward: the young designer-maker behind AdeleWDesign. We met Adele earlier this year at New Designers: One Year In, a fantastic event showcasing the work of promising young design companies. We're delighted to now have a stunning selection of Adele's minimal homewares in our store. Check them out here.
AdeleWDesign was created in 2017, and we're quite certain the company will go from strength to strength.
Ok, let's skip to it:
Adele, can you tell us a bit about your design and production process?
I design and make contemporary homewares such as coasters, trays, vessels and clocks (to name a few), using the material Jesmonite.
My design process can start from a random lightbulb moment, from which I can just begin creating the vision I had. Or sometimes I have the thought of wanting to create a specific item such as a vase and jot down designs before picking my favourite. To figure out sizes, I'll just use good old pen and paper and make maquettes.
Sometimes after lots of deliberating, I (with the help from my incredible Dad!) create the form from wood, metal, plastic to make the silicone moulds which I cast in.
I cast the jesmonite into silicone moulds. This allows me to replicate hundreds, maybe even thousands of pieces with just one mould.
For those who haven’t heard of jesmonite before, it is an acrylic modified cementitious composite. In simple terms, it is a similar material to concrete and shares characteristics such as being cold to the touch, textured and durable.
Jesmonite is made up of a liquid and powder, when mixed together forms a reaction and becomes a solid form. Using pigments, I can create rich bold colours or any colour under the sun!
After the jesmonite is set, I de-mould and start the final process of hand sanding to the desired smooth texture and sealing to protect against stains and water.
It's fantastic to get such an insight into your process, Adele. We love how hands-on it is! Of course we can't officially approve of all these bright colours...!
Ok, next question... which is your favourite corner of your home (or studio), and why?
This has to be this corner in my bedroom. I’m a firm believer of making a workspace look beautiful and comfortable, to improve productivity (I’m a bit of a procrastinator). With gorgeous prints, stationery organised and everything I need to do admin, design, wrap up items, or even just read a mag with a cuppa!
P.S. My desk is never this tidy!
Print left by Charles and Ray Eames Print right by Rachel Presky
Gorgeous! Our desks are never this tidy either... might steal your pegboard idea, it looks like a great way to get organised. Fab prints too - thanks for sharing the deets!
Now here's a question close to our hearts... can you share with us a White, Black or Grey item from your life and tell us about it?
This question was an easy one – my Eames house bird, a gift to me from my better half. As you probably guessed from my workspace, I’m a massive fan of Charles and Ray Eames and this bird pops up in their works, like a little mascot. Although not designed by them at all, I love the sleek and modern style of it.
Goodness me what a handsome fellow! Let us know if he ever fancies a holiday to WBG Towers...! Of course, we're not really trying to steal your stuff, but that also happens to be a great link to our next question... If time and money were no object, where would you take your dream holiday?
This question was a little trickier and I would love to travel all over the world on a culture trip but haven’t had the chance yet. I would absolutely love to travel around Scandinavia. I’m very much inspired by the minimal design and forms, as well as loving their ways of life.
Great answer! We adore Scandinavia (as I expect most of our readers do too). Hope you make it there soon! Ok, last question... could you tell us about another creative whose work you love?
This was a toughy! There are so many creatives, who’s work I admire and follow their creative journeys! But lately I’m loving jewellery by Lima Lima Jewellery. Rhi creates such beautiful lines and shapes within her work – I'd just love to own it all!
Wow! Her minimal game is strong - right up our street.
OK, tea break over. Thanks for your time Adele, this has been delightful. We're off to browse more jewellery!
If you fancy seeing Adele's beautiful work in real life, she'll be at the Beautiful & Useful Craft Fair on 17th November 2019.
We hope you enjoyed this feature. Do feel free to comment with any thoughts... perhaps your own dream holiday destinations, beloved monochrome items, or favourite makers - go on, share the love.