Our recent Cornflower Print was designed by the talented Pōneke-based artist and surface designer, Sally Shand, founder of Ragdoll Studio. Aside from working with Nisa, she’s collaborated with iconic Kiwi brands twenty-seven names and Città, and now manages her work alongside raising a family. We had a chat with her about her inspirations, and what makes her tick.
What sort of creative things inspire you?
We cycle the kids into the city for kindy these days, so I'm loving having this connection again as it used to be where I found a lot of my inspiration. Nature has become so important since having kids too, so if we're not cycling I love going for walks. When I'm working on a new collection or design I find my senses are very alert to the colours and objects around me and this can often lead to new ideas.
How long have you been designing textiles?
I've been working in the textile and product industry for around 13 years now. I started out after finishing design school with my own homeware label, which then led me to work for other brands as an in-house textile designer. I've now done a full circle and am back designing my own fabrics and products which I both license and wholesale, along with working one on one with clients on custom prints.
What encouraged you to follow that career path?
I remember discovering print design in the early years of having my label. Back then I was designing and screenprinting everything myself by-hand. when I managed to trade skills with a dear friend of mine (she taught me the basics of digitally putting my work into repeat and from memory I helped her with a photoshoot) that definitely felt like quite a pivotal moment for me. The joy I got from seeing my work put into repeat was so mesmerising - it still is! I've been hooked ever since.
What's one of your favourite projects you've done during your career?
I've worked on so many fun projects throughout my career and with so many wonderful brands, from clothing and fabric to ceramics and bed linen. It feels really special however to go out on my own again. Launching my licensing gallery last year was a huge achievement for me and something I've wanted to step back to for a long time.
How does being a mum affect the way you create?
Aside from shifting away from some of my more sophisticated pre-children mediums, it's forced me to slow down a lot, which is something that really doesn't come naturally to me. It's taken me quite a long time to accept this and close friends and family will know it's something I'm still learning to live with harmoniously!
Why were you keen to collaborate with Nisa?
I really admire Nisa's ethos. When choosing to work with a brand It's so important to me that the fit feels right and that our values and aesthetic align – it makes for a more meaningful collaboration and one which comes naturally and with ease.
How do you feel about people wearing your artwork on their bodies, or their undies?
Seeing something you've worked so hard to create being worn or used in the real world is just the best feeling. Walking past someone wearing a print I've created always brings me so much joy.
How do you want people who wear the print to feel?
You can shop our latest Nisa print collection here. Photography by Georgie Veitch.