Following a recent trip to Tokyo, designer Heather Moore’s eyes were opened to the importance of plants in the city environment. Inspired by her surroundings, and a heightened awareness of the relationship between concrete spaces and urban foliage, she set to work on a new Skinny laMinx fabric collection entitled ‘Paradise is Here’.
In Tokyo, Moore noticed how plants are so lovingly cared for, treated as if they are enormously precious – which they are! “Plants in a city, especially one as vast and populated as Tokyo, are essential to softening the concrete edges, sending us sensory messages about the seasons, joyousness, and wildness that urban humans crave,” explains Moore. “The row of potplants outside a store, or the carefully-trimmed shrub on a sidewalk also speak of the values of the people who care for those plants”.
On her return to Cape Town, Moore felt she understood her role as intermediary between concrete and chlorophyll. She began attending to her home garden and the roof garden at the studio with extra care and also began noticing plants everywhere in the city – the lonely, sad ones in dentists’ waiting rooms, those bravely taking hold in pavement cracks, as well as the wild jungle scenes in staid suburban settings.
AN INSPIRED COLLECTION
‘Paradise is Here’ expresses the energy and exuberance of city plants, and how they afford us respite, escape, encouragement, and an opportunity for expression. Their zig-zag softening of hard lines, the gentle shade they make, the exuberant wildness they evoke as they grow from sidewalk fissures, all help us to remember that we’re not machines in this relentless urban world. “Taking the time to notice and to care for the plants around us, amidst the concrete, allows us to cultivate our own better selves, “ says Moore.
The ‘Paradise is Here’ collection consists of four new fabric designs:
1 Zig Zag – in tarmac, brazil & pine nut. This design was conceived when palm fronds were spotted poking through the slats of a wooden fence, softening a barrier, and creating the amusing impression that the plants were inquisitive about what lay on the other side of the fence.
2 Palmetto – in pistachio, tarmac & pine nut. Rough, scratchy zig-zag lines make up exuberant, fanning leaf shapes that promise shady escape.
3 Airborne – in strelizia, sage & tarmac. Exuberant organic shapes take playful flight – like falling leaves or journeying seeds – across a featureless grid.
4 Fronds – in raffia, brazil & sage. At one view, this design is epilepsy-inducing – all jagged, crazy, noisy, jarring shapes – but a shift in perspective evokes the soothing shadow play of palm fronds.
SHOP THE COLLECTION
The ‘Paradise is Here’ fabric collection is available for purchase online at www.skinnylaminx.com and from the Bree Street shop in Cape Town. Running metres – R495.00 p/m 50x50cm Cushion Covers – R300.00 each Wallpaper from Robin Sprong – made to order.