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|| artist + designer interview: amy sia ||

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Posted on January 27 2015

Amy Sia fuses traditional art techniques with the latest in textile technology to create her stunning range of cushions. One of our exciting new brands for 2015 we were lucky enough to ask Amy a few questions all the way from the UK. Willows: Thanks for taking some time out for our Q&A, would you mind introducing yourself and telling us what you do? Amy: My name is Amy Sia.  I'm an Australian fashion and textile print designer living in London.  I create prints for my own range of homewares and accessories and also freelance for fashion companies, creating prints to be used for clothing. I also license my artwork for a range of products including greeting cards, bedding and quilting fabrics.  W: We love having your cushions in store, tell us a bit about your latest collection and your inspiration behind the range? A: My latest collection is inspired by my travels to the Greek Islands and the Caribbean. There are lots of colours inspired by the sea and sunsets, I used blues, greens, oranges and pinks. I'm also inspired by the randomness of working with watercolour and ink, it's always fun to just experiment and see how things turn out.  W: How does a design begin? Can you take us on its journey from concept to cushion? A: I usually start by painting with inks and watercolour.  I'll usually paint a lot of different paintings then I'll scan everything into the computer and start experimenting using photoshop. I manipulate the paintings, layering them over each other changing colours and scale and creating something that is sometimes very far removed from the original. Once I'm satisfied with the result the file gets sent to the digital printer, it is then printed onto fabric and made into a cushion.

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Amy's Watercolours

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W: Digital printing is a big trend across fashion and design, can you give us any insight into this technology? (We are picturing a really big printer?!?) A: Digital printing is an amazing development in the textile world.  Designs are printed by a machine that is similar to a giant colour paper printer, from a file on the computer. This technology makes it possible to do short production runs, also designs can have many colours - which is not possible or cost effective with many traditional printing methods. You can easily translate watercolour style or photo real style prints which traditionally are difficult and expensive to print. It gives the designer a lot of creative freedom when creating prints. W: And what about your journey? What path has lead you to where you are today? A: I always enjoyed painting and drawing as a child. I loved art at school, as well as fashion and this led to a degree in fashion design at RMIT University in Melbourne. I worked in the fashion industry for a few years before moving to London. When I moved over to London I found myself being drawn to creating prints and thought this would be an ideal place to pursue this career as there are more print studios specialising in this sort of work. I started interning, then freelancing and licensing my work eventually friends wanted to buy designs and so I started making a small range of accessories and homewares. W: How has relocating to London influenced your work? A: London is an incredibly inspirational city, I think anytime you are somewhere new and different you are keen to explore and discover new things and being in London enabled me to do this. I love to travel and London is a great place to do this from, with Europe so close by! W: Whats next for Amy Sia in 2015? A: I love doing what I do so hopefully I'll be creating more prints! W: Do you have a dream project or collaboration? A: There are so many amazing designers and brands out there it's difficult to pick any one dream project! In the past I have collaborated with Anthropologie and that was very exciting! In the future I'd love to one day work with a swimwear brand or create wallpaper, I think some of the prints would really suit these products. Thanks Amy! Her vibrant range is available online at www.willowshometraders.com.au and in store. x Amy_Sia_11_massive Amy_Sia_12_massive Amy_Sia_15_massive Thanks Amy! Her vibrant range is available online at www.willowshometraders.com.au and in store. x

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