WITH HEATHER MOORE

Heather Moore (above  right), Cape Town surface designer, illustrator, blogger, owner of the label Skinny laMinx which includes her gorgeous tea towels and cushions, chats about design.

Look out for the article in this Saturday’s Weekend Argus about her design influences and the serendipity and savvy that account for her success.

DESIGN IS … Good design is something where materials, manufacture and useability all intersect harmoniously and effectively. I’m trying to get there with my work.

I’M MOST PROUD OF … It’s hard to say, but I really enjoyed the response that my “I Wish we had IKEA” tea towel received, both locally and abroad. It was a bit of a personal joke project for me, and yet it seemed to hit a nerve. It even ended up on a museum exhibition in Hamburg, Germany!

I LIVE  … with my husband (artist Paul Edmunds) and our two cats in an apartment in Gardens. It’s a beautiful Deco block on a street that’s full of pedestrian traffic, as it’s just off Kloof Street. We love living there, because its easy to get around, safe to wander about at night, the supermarket stays open till 9pm, and we are within walking distance of Table Mountain. What more could you want from a home?


WHAT I LOVE ABOUT OUR HOME  … Over time, we’ve slowly collected together a rather nice selection of mid-century furniture and decor. We try to keep our home furnishing and decoration pretty minimal, as our place isn’t big, and it’s easier to keep clean that way. it’s a great place to relax in.

ON OUR WALLS … I share a studio with artist Medina Morphet, so we have quite a few of her beautiful paintings on the wall, as well as a giant linocut by Paul (a copy of which hangs at MoMA in New York). There’s also a mixture of work by local artists like Kevin Brand and David Southwood, as well as a good few treasures from Milnerton Market.

I GET AROUND IN  … a delivery van which Paul and I share  for heavy loads, but generally he commutes to his Salt River studio on his bicycle, and I try to walk or bike to my studio as much as possible. People think it’s dangerous to ride a bike in Cape Town, and I suppose it can be, but it’s loads more fun than driving a car.

I WORK … in a studio I share with two painters in Buitengracht Street. There’s a sports car rental place just below us, so it’s often filled with the sound of roaring engines and the smell of petrol fumes. It’s nice and central though, and we’ve been sharing studio space for about eight years now.

AT WORK I NEED … some large tables for storing and cutting fabric, my sewing machines, loads of shelves for storing made-up items, an area for packing and sending orders off, as well as a more office-y area where there are computers and areas for making illustrations. There’s also a kettle, which is very important, as a lot of tea gets drunk in a working day.

MY COFFEE STOP … I enjoy a regular morning coffee stop at Jason (used to be Jardine Bakery), where there’s a friendly crowd.

I LIKE EATING OUT AT … if we go out to eat, we generally walk to one of the restaurants near Kloof St, like Nonna Lina, Paradiso, or Saigon.

FOR MOVIES … I haven’t been to a movie in a mall for years, and tend to miss any movie that isn’t showing at the Labia Cinema.

CHILLING OUT … When things become a bit too much, I’ll find a quiet bench at Kirstenbosch Gardens and have a picnic in the middle of the day all by myself.

MY FAVOURITE PLACE TO PEOPLE WATCH IS …  I’ve recently started running on the Sea Point Promenade on the weekend, and it’s amazing how quickly a 7km run goes by when there’s a passing parade to enjoy.

DESIGN LOVES … I love the smaller, independent shops like Mungo & Jemima, Gregor Jenkin and Dokter & Misses that have opened up in central Cape Town. It’s so exciting to see fairly niche design getting high street viewership. I just heard that the Fringe Arts – who represent lots of different Cape Town designers – will be opening on Kloof Street too. I’m also very encouraged by the other textile designers in Cape Town, and all the support and friendliness they’ve shown me. The Neighbourgoods Market at the Old Biscuit Mill market has also been an incredible kickstart for Cape Town design. There’s so much going on here, and I feel very, very lucky to be part of it.

images 1 and 3-6 courtesy of Heather Moore, Skinny laMinx

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