Style it out: Five York designers you need to know

Former York School of Jewellery student Joanna Wakefield specialises in giving found objects a new lease of life
17 May 2016 @ 4.47 pm
| Business, Shopping

From hand-printed silk and Scandinavian embroidery to digital prints and vintage-inspired jewellery, York is home to some inspirational and talented creatives.

Here are five exciting names to look out for, both online and around town.

In stitches

The shape of things to come - Jacob de Graaf's modern take on the traditional Norse Valknut pattern of interlocked triangles
Shape of things to come – Jacob de Graaf’s modern take on the traditional triangular Norse Valknut pattern
Modern Folk

Embroidery kits £9.95; patterns £3-12

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Jacob De Graaf designs cross-stitch patterns inspired by Scandinavian and Nordic folklore that customers can then download from his online shop or Etsy.

He said

A few years ago I wanted to make a little embroidery piece, but quickly found that none of the patterns out there reflected what I was looking for.

I didn’t want to simply copy an old design, so I took the jump and tried my hand at designing my own.

Modern Folk stocks a range of sampler and pin-cushion designs inspired by Icelandic, French and Scandinavian embroidery, as well as all the crafty tools customers need to get started.

It also has a line of Italian Merino embroidery wool, hand-dyed using natural, plant-based dyes at Jacob’s York studio.

Vibrant prints

Textile design graduate Julie-Ann Smith has turned her attention to Scandi-inspired prints
Textile design graduate Julie-Ann Smith has turned her attention to Scandi-inspired prints

Julie-Ann Smith

Cards £2-2.50; prints £12

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Bright and jazzy patterns are what Julie-Ann is all about.

The textile design graduate, who studied at Nottingham Trent, has turned her attic into a vibrant art studio, where she creates contemporary, hand-drawn digital designs and distinctive prints.

She said:

I take a lot of inspiration from my surroundings, from things like architecture and nature.

I also love Scandinavian design and travelling to new exciting places. I’m desperate to explore the Scandinavian islands more.

Julie-Ann’s gift cards and art prints are stocked by Frankie & Johnny’s Cookshop in Bishopthorpe Road and The Flower Studio in Bishopthorpe. Gift wrap and a tea towel range are also in the pipeline.

To dye for

Ruth Gibbs and Natalie Herbert model their Japanese-inspired hand-dyed scarves
Ruth Gibbs and Natalie Herbert model their Japanese-inspired hand-dyed scarves

Meiji Designs

Scarves £220-260; pocket squares £50-60

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Natalie Herbert and Ruth Gibbs create hand-dyed and hand-printed silk scarves and pocket squares at their Monks Cross studio.

They started their business in 2013, creating fabric inspired by Japanese dying techniques and design.

Clients can even create their own colour combinations and add delicate devoré detail to make their scarf completely unique.

On the button

Haberdashery fan Joanna Wakefield transforms bits, bobbins and buttons into jewellery
Haberdashery fan Joanna Wakefield transforms bits, bobbins and buttons into jewellery

Joanna Wakefield Jewellery

Vintage button rings £70; silver initial necklaces £25

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Former Fair Trade designer Joanna Wakefield creates handmade silver jewellery in her home studio and workshop.

She takes much of her inspiration from haberdashery – her range includes button rings, thimble necklaces and cotton reel pendants – and from the keen needlework skills of her grandmother. She said:

My designs combine my two passions, jewellery and textiles with the added essential elements of my memories, observations and personality.

Joanna also specialises in reviving old and found objects.

Bold as brass

Former engineer John Hollington combines style and functionality in his clocks, lamps and furniture
Former engineer John Hollington combines style and functionality in his clocks, lamps and furniture

John Hollington Design

From £45; pieces individually priced

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Former engineer John Hollington’s work is all about sustainability and creating quality, functional products that last a life time.

He works with local craftsman to bring his modernist, design-inspired creations to life.

Among his latest work is his Pavilion Series of spun brass floor and desk lamps, inspired by Mies van der Rohe’s modernist Barcelona Pavilion.