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Meet Kirsty Anne Powell -

Linen Goods:

Our fourth blog in our designer interview series is on the subject of linen goods. This series is all about showcasing some of the amazing women who have supported, inspired and been part of Saloukee’s 10 year story in business.

Today we are speaking with the inspiring design thinker and business and service designer that is Kirsty Anne Powell.

Our month four showcase is all about linen goods and the reason Kirsty has been selected for this months interview is because textiles (including linen) is where she began in business. This material is chosen because linen is the gift given for the fourth wedding anniversary. This year for us is all about celebrating our 1-10 years in business.  So during June, I will also be making new linen jewellery. Plus recommending other brilliant independents who work in the same medium.

Linen Goods Textile Designer Kirsty Anne Powell

Some Background

How did you and Sarah first meet?
Sarah applied to do work experience at Oromono, which was the first business that I established after graduating from Loughborough University. Even though we designed and sold textile design for high end interiors, I loved her work and her CV showed ambition, her portfolio of work showed her pure talent.
What are you doing at this stage in your career?
Now, I run my own business consultancy, we create solutions and strategies through design innovation.
Linen Goods A Trip To Japan
What’s your greatest professional accomplishment to date?

I always remember being flown over to Tokyo by my clients to show my award winning collection that I first exhibited at Maison et Objet. I was spoilt by them from the day I landed, I always held my Japanese clients in such high regard. I’m a big believer in treating others how you wish to be treated yourself and the Japanese have the same philosophy in business.

Is there one piece of advice that you would give to someone thinking of starting their own creative business?
That’s a tough one, there is so much to learn when starting up; but I believe you need to have more than just talent. You have to be ambitious, determined, fearless, be able to take risks and keep pushing yourself to be successful. Above all though, you must love what you do, because you will be doing it everyday. Also I’ve personally always mixed business and pleasure, which led to me travelling to some of my favourite places in the world with my favourite people.

Women In Business

How has running your business changed in the time you’ve been involved in the industry?

After designing and selling my own textile collections internationally for ten years from my Amsterdam studio, I wanted a change. I moved to London and became a Business Lecturer at, in my mind, two of the best creative institutions in the London; CSM and Ravensbourne. It gave so me so much pleasure to advise and help students and graduates to start up their own businesses and work freelance. I’m still in touch with many of them today!
Can you name a female role model (alive/dead) that you believe  future generations should know about?
Working in the design industry, to be honest, I was mostly surrounded my male role models. All the shows I did internationally in Amsterdam, Paris, London, Tokyo and New York were with furniture and product designers. I exhibited with some very talented people, who I learnt so much from.
Piet Hein Eek, a renowned talented Dutch designer inspired me the most in my twenties. His continual passion to design and his enthusiasm for creating new products puts him right at the top of my list as someone to follow should you be a creative wanting to start their own business, he’s the man to watch.
Linen Goods Oromono Textile
What’s your favourite material to work with and are there any you’d still love to explore?
Graduating from my degree as a textile designer, I thought it would always be fabrics and interior design. I have worked with many materials over the years including paper fabric, woolen felt, stunning silks and of course I created many linen goods. However, after doing a Masters in service design, I’ve now discovered design thinking. I’ve now become passionate about starting and developing business strategies using design as a process.
Through research I’ve discovered that the best service designers who revolutionise how businesses are set up and developed, quite often come from a design background. Creative thinking gives you the opportunity to come up with ideas and concepts in a different way to a traditional business consultant. So, I guess now my new favourite material is people, I now create and design business concepts through a human-centric approach.
Linen Goods Sketch Consultancy

Real Life Stuff

What’s one thing that creativity has taught you about life?

Anything, anyone, or any place can inspire you, there is so much beauty all around us. I think it’s important to enjoy what you see, what you hear and who you meet; listen, learn and soak it all up. Life’s delights come in many different packages, take time to enjoy what you love, to ensure that you live your life to the full.

What’s the most sentimental object that you own and why?

I immediately thought, my engagement ring, it’s a reminder of the man who I live my life with. Together we face everything , we’re a team and together we’re stronger. It’s also a very pretty champagne diamond from Australia, which is where he’s from. Everyday, I look at it and enjoy its sparkle! Another gem in my life, is a little buddha made from stone. I found it in Kyoto in a antique street sale. Its been held so much overtime that its curved in shape to fit in someones hand. I love it, because it reminds me of my journey of exploration in Japan, which I couldn’t recreate now if I tried.

What does priceless mean to you?

Something money can’t buy, an experience, a moment, a place, laughter with a friend, a giggle from my daughter or a smile from my son when I walk into a room.

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