It’s always inspiring to see talent and new ideas hit the marketplace. These textile designers have combined their love of whimsical design and eco-friendly methods. I think their drawings would also do well as prints.ARTISTS: Jen Kneulman and Lauren Hunter
Using the husk of a black walnut to print their images, textile artists Jen Kneulman (pictured above) and Lauren Hunter have created an environmentally friendly company that features everyday references to local flora and fauna and the cottage.
Freshly Printed is the Toronto-based company the two Ontario College of Art and Design graduates formed in 2009. They found they had similar interests and rather than become competitors, they joined forces. As classmates in the fibre program at OCAD, they were alarmed at the level of pollution created by the industrial textiles industry. They decided to do something about it.
Jen and Lauren start the process with hand rendered drawings, using a combination of screen-printing and stencil to apply their light-hearted images to fabric. Accent colours are added with a non-toxic, water-based pigment. You find yourself smiling when you look at their work, as they’ve taken familiar images like birds, sailboats and mason jars and reinterpreted them for today’s market. The recent grads combine their drawings with vivid colours, which adds punch to the hemp and organic linen they’ve chosen to use.
Jen says, “our goal is to be as sustainable as possible.” Right now, aside from its beach bags (above), Freshly Printed is focusing on the kitchen, with a selection of tea towels and aprons. Lauren and Jen have plans to expand their line as the business grows. You can reach them here.