Hangin' Five. February 25 2014

You may have noticed that the scarves on my website aren't quite ready! I wanted to say sorry to anyone waiting with baited breath for cashmere and explain the hold up.

After a year working on our company Eager & Vane with my sisters and now going out on my own, I've finally realised that the silk trade is a crazy bitch!  I liken it to being in a tiny boat bobbing on the ocean, you just have to see which way the current takes you. It can be amazingly fun and challenging working with companies and mills  overseas and sometimes it can be a full-on "hands up in the air" storm out frustration. More of the former thankfully!

I have a few beautiful people helping me across India, who with love and kindness treat my product like their own and with finger crossed, the high standard of silk, cashmere and digital textile printing will be here before winter to keep you cosy and looking seriously stylist.



Mash-up! January 21 2014

I was asked a very interesting question the other day on my Tumblr page. Sitting in my studio I contemplated Maddy's take on my art….

"I was wondering if you used all your own images or just altered ones you find. I always feel guilty using someone's images to create a print but is this something that many designers do? It would be great to hear from you :)"

Good question. As a collage artist I'm always thinking about this, conceptually and literally. At what point does a 17th century etching of a flower become mine when I juxtapose it into my work? At what point is it plagiarism or copywrite infringement? I've heard the cliche "It's not where you take it from but where you take it to" But that's not quite true either. I'm very careful and deeply respectful of where I source my collage reference because I know it would be weird for someone to use my drawing in their work without permission.

I live by these golden rules; if I've altered an image 70% then it's okay, I never use practising artists work, if I've paid or asked for it, then it's okay, if it's out of copywriter then it's okay. Anything else I draw or paint and scan into my collages.

Ultimately, collage art is about surrealism, juxtaposition and mash-up which is just not achievable without a combination of found images. I wonder what Max Ernst or Peter Blake would to say about it?


"Venice Suite" by Peter Blake 2009

Sarah Howell Limited Edition says "Welcome!" October 22 2013

Firstly, thank you so much for visiting my new site. Here I'll be ranting on about art and all things that interest me, and hopefully you too!

What's this all about?

This new label is all about art. A little bit of fashion thrown in but mainly its visual. Oscar Wilde once said "One should either be a work of art or wear a work of art" and that seems to be my moto.

My artwork is about having some visual fun. To the chagrin of my university lecturers, it's not conceptual or political, it's purely ornamental. Aestheticism describes my work perfectly and I use ornament as a language to portray different emotions and feelings. To me birds, flowers and pattern are like a visual alphabet which I collage and combine to make some eye poetry.

Like certain smells, art can take you somewhere without actually being pictorial. Sometimes, like in poetry, two incongruous images can create a whole different feeling. Subtle pinks and nudes create a certain visual story but combined with a jolt of acid yellow out of the blue, or you stick a purple pineapple in there and bang! the whole picture changes. We get confused or delighted! It makes us confounded or excited and keeps us returning to the image.

I strive to make my scarves and prints visually precious to keep the viewer amused and amazed.





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