The Hypericum Girl Illustration by Rachel Thornton
Welcome to Carousel Flora Design’s new website and blog, ‘Gathering Tales’. You may notice that we’ve been posting privately for some time now if you scroll through the archives, but as of today we are officially dipping our toes, well fully immersing ourselves, into this exciting new technical and very public arena.
Our website has been a lengthy on-going project but Rachel and I are thrilled that our business will once again have visibility despite the shop’s future in Lyttelton remaining uncertain. I must say it has been a tough challenge to maintain our motivation levels and creative spirit at times, post earthquakes, aftershocks et al, but having a creative project to focus on and a kindrid spirit to work alongside, has certainly helped Rachel and I remain sane (ish!).
‘Gathering Tales’ will bring you our current inspirations, new designs, journal sketches and images together with ideas, projects and recipes to share with you on a regular basis. Feel free to comment and keep in touch. We’d love your feedback.
Rachel and I would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to some of the people who have assisted and truly supported us during the past couple of years. Firstly, our husbands and families who have at all times encouraged us and allowed this dream to be realised. Not to mention putting up with countless phone calls at all hours of the day and night, and piles of debris strewn all around our homes and gardens! John Burt of Working Ideas for graphic design support and Maika Zack for strategic technical advice. Peter Bay who gave us an invaluable insight into the world of international publishing and book concept design. Lucy Hone for understanding our vision from the beginning and offering thoughtful constructive direction. Hilary Perkins for her unfailing support. Jacinda Gilligan for her enthusiasm and utter belief in us. Andrea Bay for her perpetual optimism and wise words. Margaret Egan for her continued encouragement and generous supply of materials and Chilean chef Guilio Sturla, a passionate food forager and gatherer, for inspiring us with his unending drive, passion and love of this beautiful land and its seasons.
There are too many other friends and loyal Carousel clients to thank individually but you will know who you are, and we thank you for supporting our business since it opened in 2008.
The Snowdrop Girl Illustration by Rachel Thornton
That said, let me introduce a series of drawings that Rachel has been developing. The Carousel Girls. These darling, elegantly-attired girls were created whilst Rachel was confined to her bed recovering from exhaustion post earthquake. With only a pen and paper in her hand, she began to create these fantasy girls. Beautiful, thoughtful girls who love gathering and love nature. Dressed rather romantically and femininely, the Carousel Girls offer us an escape from the asethically-challenging environment in which we Cantabrians are currently living.
Each month a new girl will be launched celebrating a seasonal material. Check out the illustration gallery to see the Carousel Girls to date. Prints and series of stationery to follow.