How long does it take to create a roll of wallpaper you ask? Well about a day to be exact when if you’re bespoke designer Daniel Heath and you’re screen printing every single inch of said roll.
A few weeks ago social platform, In the Window, kindly asked me to take part in a workshop with Daniel at Top Drawer, and since I can’t ever say no to a little bit of printing action, I made the trip over to the somewhat overwhelming Olympia London for a few hours of talking thickness of ink, temporary sinks and having a wee go at creating some wallpaper myself.
It’s not an easy process and one made more difficult by a lack of space and a very very long printing table. You may remember I visited Daniel’s Walthamstow studio back in December but he has since moved on to a larger space in Hackney to facilitate extra orders and some larger bespoke furniture items. Luckily for Daniel, Ben Couture and Pooky Lights were on hand to kit the temporary In The Window studio out and provide him with the perfect temporary studio to both work in and entertain the crowds.
I had of course tried screen-printing back in the days of my Graphic Design degree but unfortunately I did the usual of not really making the most of the workshop and instead was more interested in doodling my course away. Perhaps it could also be down to the fact that the first time I tried, our output was enormous and my arms hurt for days after! It’s all about the wrist muscles when screen printing and while as Daniel knows that you get used it it, my little flimsy arms aren’t quite there yet for the multiple print runs. However, with the help of Daniel I was successfully able to pull a couple of screens, even at a very awkward angle.
The resulting Lexington print is based on recent trips to New York by Daniel and pays homage to New York skyscrapers and of course that iconic skyline. Located on Lexington avenue is the cluster of building which inspired the design including the Chrysler Building, General Electric, and the Chanin Building. For Daniel, German film Metropolis helped spur on his interest in the urban and for him ‘each of these buildings has their own unique art deco character and symbolise a time of change and advancement towards modernity.’
The wallpaper is the third to be added to Daniel’s Perivale Collection – a series dedicated to Art Deco architecture – and cry out for “New York, New York” I would if I had a whole wall of this beautiful lustrous print.
Bespoke orders of all Daniels work are available on request and colours are customisable. The Lexington print itself used a two colour screen printed design with a metallic later and orders take a minimum of three weeks to complete.
Thank you so much to In The Window for organising such an interactive event – it always a pleasure and without you so many independent designers would struggle with telling their story. Have you had a look at what’s in the window yet? Who’s your favourite designer discovery? The team will be back with Daniel Heath at Kew Gardens this Saturday so do pop by, say hello and learn even more about the narrative behind this incredible maker. Oh, and I’ll be there too (because I just can’t get enough)!
All images courtesy of In The Window.