Set up by British designer Jacinta Walton, Whinberry & Antler design and produce unique fabrics and homewares by hand in rural England. Incorporating a passion for traditional skills by using hand printing methods, and taking inspiration from British wildlife and countryside, Whinberry & Antler hope to bring a beautiful token of the countryside into your home.

Please have a look around the blog and follow us to see how Whinberry & Antler products are made, with step by step photographs demonstrating the traditional skills used on the 'Behind the Scenes' page, as well as other information and updates about the company.

For more information please see the company website www.WhinberryAntler.com or email info@WhinberryAntler.com

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Some Antlers and a Big Bus.


Well, a little while ago I decided to try and battle a creative block by introducing 'Creative Thursday' to my week... and what a difference it has made!

The best thing to do when drawing seems hard is to just... draw!

I have been drawing a selection of animals in various styles and very soon they will be put onto my silkscreens so that I can start printing and making them into cushions, tea towels and more! I am aiming to have all the new designs out for Christmas- in fact they will be launched at the Country Living Christmas Fair in London at the end of October. There will also be a few more product lines as well as some new fabrics; so I am very excited about launching the new products. Here's a little snippet of whats coming;

Finally some Antlers!

In other news, I am heading into Shrewsbury this week to join the Start-Up Britain bus as it stops in the Square on Thursday morning. I will be there meeting people with new ideas for businesses, helping to give out advice and encourage people to pursue these ideas. I visited the bus when it stopped in Telford nearly two years ago, with not much more than an idea, some business cards and a small cutting of my first sample of printed fabric (featuring the marching hedgehogs)- I met some really nice, friendly and helpful people and was even awarded a Dell laptop for Best Business Idea that day! It was a pivotal moment for me and really gave me faith to pursue my idea. I am looking forward to encouraging others to do the same! Please have a look at the website and if you are near Shrewsbury (or any of the other stops) and thinking about a new business, no matter how small the idea, be sure to come along!

I shall be off now, before I say too much more about the new products... I don't want to give everything away and ruin the surprise!

Thank you for visiting and reading, hopefully see you again soon.

Jacinta, W&A

Friday, 7 June 2013

Just a quick hello


Well, I'm really getting into the creative swing again at the moment (I think the sunshine, great morning walks and a flowering garden have all had something to do with this). I've been trying out new prints with the hand cut stencils.  I made this lampshade the other day and I have already decided to use one for a floor lamp in our home;

I am thinking of calling the next collection the 'meadow' collection. I've never really been interested in drawing plant life much before, but this year I am really enjoying it. Plus I am starting to learn all the names for our wild flowers now which is great too! There is also another stencil which is half cut featuring dandelion seeds so hopefully I will be able to get printing that next week too. The meadow collection designs are going to be printed in some nice natural colours to add another dimension to the overall look of Whinberry & Antler products.

Text will also start to feature in the meadow collection. I have always really liked hand drawn typefaces and I think this would be most fitting to go alongside hand drawn designs. As a child I used to get my nan, who has the most immaculate and beautiful handwriting, to try and teach me how to write properly. Well, my handwriting is not as nice as hers, but I think it will look nice printed with the wild meadow imagery.

Our booking for the Nunney Street Market and Fayre has also now been confirmed. Taking place on Saturday 3rd August, it is set in the very picturesque village of Nunney, just outside of Frome in Somerset. There will be around 130 stalls and it should be a really great day, so come along if you get chance.

A couple of weeks ago I was in London for the notonthehighstreet.com event 'Make, Do and Meet'. It was a really interesting day, full of lots of entrepreneurial people (mainly women!). It was so fantastic to see so many people making a business out of being creative. One of the highlights of the day was a talk about 'creativity' by Michael Atavar. It was truly inspiring and great for developing processes on how to get more creative and push through blocks. The event was hosted in the lovely Royal Opera House too, which I had not visited before.

Ok, I shall be off now to continue cutting my dandelion stencil. The plan is to take some photographs of products on Sunday so that the meadow designs will start to become available to buy online soon. I shall be sure to update when they are.

One last thing.... I have rediscovered some of my design books and along with something Michael Atavar mentioned (about finding an image each day that you like and keeping them all in a kind of image journal) I have decided that each time I write I shall finish the post with an image or two from a designer or illustrator that I like. So, this time it is two screen prints by the illustrator Andrew Holder (andrewholder.net). These two screen prints are my particular favourites;

'Two Bears'

'Two Bears Revisited'

Thanks for reading, see you soon, W&A.

Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Spring meadow flowers, a badger badger badger chair and more...


I thought it was about time that I wrote another blog post. I've been busy doing various things for Whinberry & Antler...

Firstly, a little while ago after realising that i hadn't done any drawing for months, I decided to set some time aside each week in order to get some drawing done. So now Thursdays are known as 'Drawing Thrursday'. It was quite hard initially to get back into being creative, but I find that it is one of those things, that once you start getting the creative juices flowing it becomes much easier and thats when things start to get exciting! Being able to draw and design was the reason why I set up Whinberry & Antler and is my true passion, so I felt like my interest was flagging slightly by not making sure that I make the time for this incredibly important aspect of the business.

Once I started drawing I thought it would be good to buy a small screen and experiment with making stencils by hand using a scalpel. If you have had chance to look over the 'Behind The Scenes' page, you will see that my images have previously been put onto screens using a UV Light sensitive emulsion. Whilst this is fantastic for getting beautifully detailed images onto a screen, if you do not have the equipment to do this, it is not very flexible in terms of experimenting with new artwork.

It has been on my mind now that I have wanted to create a whole new range for W&A... So I have turned my drawing to the subject of meadow flowers and grasses. I love how delicate some of our meadow plant life is and it has been really lovely to draw this subject matter with my ultra fine pen! Here's a sneak preview of what I have in mind...

These images will also be put onto a screen soon using UV emulsion, but before that I have been creating some basic silhouettes using a scalpel and Mylar (a trademarked polyester film)... this can be a fiddley process but I have been pretty happy with the results so far. I'm going to have a go at printing some of these designs onto lampshades tomorrow.

Hand cut stencil featuring delicate meadow flowers

This stencil design works well running the length of the rectangle cushion in muted natural colours

In other news, a friend of mine, Polly Waite of Polliander, who I met on my upholstery course in Wales a couple of years ago, bought some of the badger fabric from me to upholster a chair. She sent me the photos the other day and they are fantastic! It's so nice to see the fabric being used by someone to create something so stunning. The chair is for sale so be sure to check out the website!

This classic chair upholstered by Polliander in our Badger Badger Badger fabric 

If you look at the Whinberry & Antler website you will also see that lampshades are now available to buy online. Currently only the hedgehog and hare designs are on there, but the badger will follow shortly, as well as some more botanically inspired designs too hopefully!

Medium Hare lampshade 
Medium Hedgehog Lampshade

 I have also bought some transfer paper to get designs onto ceramics so I am going to be testing those out over the next couple of weeks too; I need to check that they are completely dishwasher proof... fingers crossed! I am also considering buying a small kiln at the moment. But having only learnt a bit about ceramics when I was at school, this may prove to be a bit of a learning curve! I've got a couple of books though and managed to get some advice from a few sources, so perhaps learning to fire my own ceramics could be a summer project. 

So all in all I have quite a few ideas swimming around in my head right now so hopefully by the time we reach the start of the christmas season there will be lots more Whinberry & Antler designs to get excited about! 

Thank you for taking the time to read all about the latest progress... I shall be sure to keep you updated on how all this product development goes!!!


Thursday, 28 February 2013

New product photos finally completed and uploaded!


Well, I have finally had a bit of time to re-take my product photos. It's been needing to be done for quite some time now, but I have finally started and I am now about halfway through!

I have decided to go for a 'wood' theme in my images, I think the beautiful markings on our old dining table go hand in hand with the rustic charm and content of my wildlife imagery. Plus in our new house we have a conservatory which gets fantastic natural light, even during these grey days.

At present the new products and images have been uploaded to our notonthehighstreet.com, etsy (www.etsy.com/shop/whinberryantler?ref=shop) and Travelling Souk (www.thetravellingsouk.com/vendors/whinberryantler/products/)pages. They will be up on the company website as soon as possible. Still to take photos of are the lampshades, draught excluders, large cushions and aprons with pockets. Here are a few of the new photos so far;

Close up of Rectangle Badger Cushion

Rectangle Hedgehog Cushion

New Fox Cushion

Badger Lavender Bag

I have also started the process of making a short video to illustrate how W&A products are made. I think it would be a really nice way to show what goes on here at W&A plus it means I get to be creative in another medium! I've started drawing up a story board, so I am hoping to shoot some video some time in April with the help of my graphic designer brother Seb.

As well as this, I have contacted a local bookmaker to help me produce some proper sample books of fabrics, as I know a few people already who would be interested in these, including Polly of Polliander (https://www.facebook.com/PollianderVintage). I met Polly on my upholstery course a couple of years ago and she up-cycles furniture to create some fantastic results, so be sure to check out her facebook page.

Other than that, I have been exploring the world of other designer/maker blogs a bit, which is how i came across Skinny LaMinx designs; this is a company based in South Africa producing some great illustrative fabrics and soft furnishings. The website is great, but I really love the blog as a sneak peek behind the scenes, I would highly recommend taking a look: http://skinnylaminx.com/blog/.

So for now farewell, I shall be sure add more photos as I go along and keep everything updated! Thank you for visiting the blog and taking the time to have a read through, it really means a lot.

W&A (and Olo, the fast growing Welsh terrier!)

Olo, the nearly four month old Welshie

Friday, 11 January 2013

New stockists and W&A in Country Homes and Interiors Magazine

Hello, and Happy New Year!  A little bit late, but seeing as this is the first blog post of 2013 I thought I may as well say it!

And what a busy start to the year it has been. I was wondering if January would be a little quieter after Christmas, but I am delighted to say that we will shortly have two new stockists! Both Vintage in Shrewsbury and For You And Your Home in Cirencester have ordered more stock in plus the new stockists have ordered a range of items; '& Vintage'  in Ruthin, Wales (www.andvintage.co.uk) a great company selling lovely products, including many hand made items by other British designer/makers. They have a really great website, so maybe take a look. Our other new stockist will be the Tallantyre Gallery in Northumberland (www.tallantyre-gallery.co.uk), who sell and exhibit original art work.

Demonstrating a great way to use our hand printed Badger fabric and one of our small hessian cushions

Featuring a W&A Badger lavender bag
Whinberry & Antler products have also been used for a great article in the current issue of Country Homes and Interiors available in shops now. I absolutely love these photos and it is so great to see the hand printed fabric being put to use! Plus to see W&A products alongside the likes of Donna Wilson and Melin Tregwynt is just absolutely fantastic, as these are two companies that I have really aspired to... and I love the graphic patterns and traditions of Welsh tapestry. Here are some photos of the pages, but I have requested the PDF versions so hopefully I will get those soon. A BIG BIG thank you to Country Homes and Interiors for using my products.

 Iolo our Welsh Terrier. 
So, as well as being busy with all things Whinberry & Antler, we now have a new addition to the team; little iolo. He is our 9 week old Welsh terrier who likes to sleep, eat and bounce around!