John Pawson, the British architect known for minimalism and an appreciation for the Japanese aesthetic, wouldn’t be the first name that springs to mind when it comes to textiles and colour (his work is a consistent palette of white and grey). And yet, he says ‘I’ve always been drawn to the colour, texture and pattern that are inherent in natural materials – the tiny fossils in a piece of Lecce limestone or the grain of a length of oak.’ Now, in honour of his affection for the woods, hedgerows and agricultural landscapes that surround his Cotswolds home he has produced a second collection of blankets inspired by colours taken from his natural environment for Danish brand Tekla.
The Copenhagen-based home textiles firm Tekla is a company with a strong eco credentials run by Charlie Hedin, a friend of Pawson’s son Cauis. They produce bedlinen, blankets, towels and soon pyjamas and loungewear. All are woven from organic cotton and Oeko-Tex®, which is free of harmful chemicals and made in line with the Global Organic Textile (GOTSO) requirements. It was this responsible approach that was a strong pull for Pawson, ‘sustainability has, rightly, become an integral part of the way we design’, he says ‘the decision was easy: engaging with talented individuals is a real pleasure and it also helps keep the thinking fresh, I felt so at ease and was suddenly struck by the possibilities of the collaboration, he wrote to me, asking if I’d be interested and I was.’
‘Shift’ four new mohair blankets in single colours joins ‘Trace’, a collection of four patterned blankets featuring motifs of horizontal, vertical lines or an unfinished grid that were launched last May. The colours, Molten Lava, Natural Grey, Java and Madder Brown, have their roots in the natural world, ‘the choice of colours for the new collection is based directly on experiencing the countryside around Home Farm and watching how the hues change as the year turns. The colours are drawn from nature, so they naturally correlate with the palette of the house, which is based around stone and timber. In this way you introduce quite strong colour without disrupting the simplicity of the visual field.’
The joint creative process is also evident in the product’s photography, which was shot at John’s Farm House in the Oxfordshire countryside, which also inspired the name. ‘The idea of the textiles in this collection derives from the seasonal shift and how the quality of the light and shadow is changing throughout them. It makes us think about how we perceive and experience colour and atmosphere in a space,’ explains Hedin.
Pawson expands, ‘a consistent consideration for me in my architectural work is how the shift in seasons is reflected in the changing quality of the light and shadow in the spaces I make and how this effects the way we experience colour and atmosphere.’ The blankets are a perfect companion to a clean modern interior, even for the staunch advocator of minimal living.
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