Designer Crush – Timorous Beasties
I’ve had a serious crush on Timorous Beasties designs since my Interior Design study days. You may have already come across their designs, but just in case you havent, they are a predominately a fabric and wallpaper design company. Having said that, for me their designs are works of art in their own right. And who doesn’t want to have some form of art in their homes.
Timorous Beasties fabrics and wallpapers are handprinted and are the mainstay to their business. Whilst they may not be cheap, you’re paying for craftsmanship, quality, and impeccable attention to detail. Probably one of the best in their field, their beautiful products should last the test of time. Encapsulating spaces with their intrinsic beauty their designs standout amongst the masses and are hard to miss.
As with any form of art, Timorous Beasties bold designs aren’t going to be everyone’s cup of tea, but that’s whats great about them. They aren’t looking to conform to trends or playing it safe, and that makes their designs even more exciting and interesting.
Alistair McAuley and Paul Simmons are the designers behind the Timorous Beasties brand, which they established in 1990. They met whilst studying textile design at the Glasgow School of Art. Based in Glasgow, Timorous Beasties have gone on to become a multi award-winning internationally acclaimed company.
In case your curious the name Timorous Beasties derives from a poem by Robert Burns, ‘To A Mouse”. It was chosen as a name that wasn’t going to solely define them as purely fabrics and wallpapers.
TIMOROUS BEASTIES DESIGNS
There’s a timeless classic quality to Timorous Beasties designs. Taking inspiration from the everyday such as nature, they turn them into works of art that are to be admired, touched and cherished.
Unlike the mass-produced market, Timorous Beasties offers unique designs that will enhance our interiors not just for today, but for years to come. The attention to detail with all of their designs shines through, with each individual piece, and as you may have guessed, I love them.
Each intricate design is handprinted using traditional methods. They combine old and new technologies to communicate and produce their designs such as copperplates and digital design.
Knowing where to begin choosing which designs to feature for today’s post has been difficult, as they are all so wonderful. So what better way to showcase their work, by starting off with one of their very first designs, the Iguana Print. This was designed whilst they were still at the Glasgow School of Art.
By using unique wallpaper designs such as Timorous Beasties within your homes provides you with stand out focal points that draw the eye to areas that you want to enhance.
Timorous Beasties have taken the traditional thistle motif and transformed it by using scale, and applying a modern edgy vibe. This beautiful room above shows just how amazing it looks.
For me, I see their work as keeping alive snippets of historical designs and reinventing them for us to enjoy today, and I love that element to their work.
The range of products on offer are expanding all the time from lace, ceramics and contract carpeting. Being a tactile person, my absolute favourite has to be their cushions. The Moth Blotch cushion (shown above) from their Ruskin Collection is firmly on my wish list. I’m hoping that with my birthday not too far off, the OH might just surprise me. Let’s hope he’s reading this!
I had to include Timorous Beasties Toiles here as they’ve become somewhat famous for their controversal Glasgow, and London ones. They’ve taken this historical textile design and given it a modern twist with urban scenes from everyday life within today’s cities. Historically, Toiles mirrored every day aspects of life and culture during the 17th & 18th Centurys. Timorous Beasties Toiles designs are no different on their take on everyday snippets of life. Although some would say that its a somewhat grim view of city life. But there again, life is a mixture of good and the bad, and Timorous Beasties haven’t shied away from real life.
If you’re not familiar with the origins of Toiles, they originated in from the pre-revoluntionary and post industrial France in the 1770’s in a town outside of Paris called Jouy, hence the name Toile de Jouy. The factory at Jouy created more than 30,000 designs in its day. Toile de Jouy literally translates as cloth from Jouy. Toiles where a way of depicting what was currently happening in any given city, or event in the world. Typically as a single colour print of a pastoral scene on a white background.
For those of you that like a bit of history and origins of textiles, the Toile de Jouy has a fascinating story behind it. Cotton was initially imported from India to France in the 16-17th Century where it became a huge success due it’s easy care, and light properties. It became so popular that the French government ended up banning it from production and importation as they feared the France’s silk, wool and cloth industries would suffer. Used from wall coverings, to clothing, and bedding. Eventually the ban was removed as it proved impossible to enforce. The rest as they say is history, and Toiles de Jouy became a fashion in their own right.
Timorous Beasties Website
If your left wanting more of Timorous Beasties designs, then head on over to their excellent website. They’ve even got The Room! A fun virtual space that you get to play around with a selection of their fabrics, wall coverings and prints from their collections.
Fallen In Love?
Ok so you’ve fallen in love, but can’t afford the price tag. You might be able to console yourself with the fact that there are mugs to be had! Yes, MUGS, and we can all afford one of those right? And it might go someway to filling the gap of wanting to own a piece, albeit small, of their amazing designs. Me, I’m holding out for a cushion for now!
I hope you’ve enjoyed todays Designer Crush. Maybe you’ve got one that you’d like me to share. You can always drop me a line via the contacts box.
Until next time….
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