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Studio Life

  • Making Mugs

    Last year we made a trip to Stoke-On-Trent to meet the people who make Anna's mugs and find out a bit more about how they are made. We discovered a process that was far more complex and hand made than we had ever imagined; it was fascinating so we thought we'd share some of the things we learnt on our trip along with a few 'behind the scenes' pictures...

    The starting point for every mug is fine bone china.

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    Fine bone china means the mugs have a delicacy that is difficult to achieve with other materials like stoneware - you'll find that they're thinner than some mugs out there.

    The pottery we work with, Hudson & Middleton, is in a magnificent Grade II listed building in the heart of Staffordshire and is known for it's fine bone china. It's one of the last remaining potteries in the UK and is proud to remain 100% British in it's manufacturing process.

    From the raw material, the liquid clay is poured into moulds and then left to dry...


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    Handles are made and attached before the mugs are fired for their first 'biscuit firing'

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    There's lots of trimming and finishing involved at each of these stages which means that lots of hands are involved in the process!

    Once the mugs have been biscuit fired they're then glazed and fired again before they are decorated. At each stage they're checked for cracks and imperfections.

    Here are a few miniatures that we spotted on the shelves ready to be decorated, they were tiny but full of detail despite their size!
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    The printed decorations (printed in special ceramic ink- all very complex) are then hand-applied to each mug. It takes a steady hand and a lot of skill to get it just right. And some good motivational posters ;)

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    Once the decoration has been applied they're fired again to make sure that the image sticks to the glaze underneath. They're then ready to use... as beautifully demonstrated by Anna below!

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    The result of our trip was 5 new designs of mugs - Hot to Trot, I Used to be a Caterpillar, Morning Assembly, Splish Splosh & Fishy Friends. The images come from Anna's children's book which was published last November.2017-2

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    If you haven't seen them already then you'll find them on the website here >> And next time you pick up your mug we hope you think of all the skilled people that were involved in the making!

  • Magnificent Creatures launch party

    We've been very busy over the past few weeks and thought we would share a few pics of what we've been up to....

    In November, the lovely Grandy Art and Faber & Faber hosted an evening with us to celebrate the launch of Anna's latest children's book, Magnificent Creatures. It was held in a gorgeous gallery space on the Kings Road and the walls were adorned with original artwork from the book. We had a fun filled children's party with crafts & games in the afternoon followed by a drinks party for the oldies later in the evening.

    The shop window was decked out in full 'Anna Wright' for the day...

    Anna Putting the Finishing Touches

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    The children's party was full of chatter and laughter; colour pencils, glitter glue and Hulahoops were strewn everywhere and much chaotic fun was had by all as we created colourful jellyfish and fish!

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    Anna Wright Children's Party

    The children were sent home with goodie bags, complete with some cuttings of fabric to create their own Magnificent Creatures at home!

    Goodie Bag contents

    After the children filtered out we cracked open the bubbly for the 'oldies' party...

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    Thanks to everyone who popped in and shared a sausage roll with us - we had a blast!

  • Open Studios Christmas 2016

    Our London open studios will be held on the first weekend of December, this is where Anna does all the drawing. She'll be there from the 2nd - 4th December at Clements Yard, Iliffe Street, SE17 3LJ so do pop in and see what's on sale... It's a chance to see a lot of her prints in the flesh and to check out the new wash bags, canvas bags and much more! If you're lucky Anna might even sign one of her books for you :)

    Pullens Yard Open Studios

    Anna's space is situated in Clements Yard just up the stairs towards the back.

    More details about the London Open Studios can be found here >> along with more information about the wonderful jewellery makers, craftsmen, carpenters, florists and many more who fill the studios next to Anna's.

    Our Edinburgh Open studios will be on the 25th - 26th November. Details are below...

    Beaverhall Road Open Studios

    Beaverhall Road Open Studios

    The Anna Wright studio is up on the second floor in studio 33. The Edinburgh team will be there with lots of goodies for sale... from framed prints to mugs, tea towels and even original artworks. This is the studio in which Anna started the business and where everything is stored and sent out from so you'll be able to have a nosey around the heart of the business whilst picking up a few Christmas gifts! More information on the event can be found here >> or on the Beaverhall Studios Facebook Page . The building is filled with lots of other wonderful creatives, artists and makers so there will be lots to see!

    If you have any questions, feel free to drop us an email to [email protected]

    Hopefully see you very soon!

    Anna and the team xx

  • Exhibition with Grandy Art

    grandy-art-under-a-grandNext week Anna will be exhibiting with Grandy Art at the 2016 Under A Grand exhibition on the Kings Road in London.

    This is an annual exhibition showcasing a collection of paintings, drawings, prints, pots and photography for less than £1000.

    A selection of original artworks from Anna's latest children's book, Magnificent Creatures, will be available to buy along with some prints and other goodies. There'll be sea turtles, jellyfish, zebra and lots more! It's a wonderful chance to see how the book was made and came together - some of the artworks are much larger in scale than you would imagine from the book.

    The exhibition will be running from 22nd - 27th November.

    Gallery hours: 10am - 6pm - just pop in!

    Address: 340 Kings Rd, London, SW3 5UR

    We'll be hosting a book launch party in the exhibition space on the afternoon / evening of the  23rd November. From 4-6pm there will be a book reading and crafts for children and from 7-9pm there will be drinks & nibbles for the 'oldies' (and a chance for you to buy a signed copy of the book of course).

    Feel free to pop into the show anytime during the week but if you'd like to come to the launch party then please do drop us an email to [email protected] so we can add you to the list.

    Follow the link for more information about the amazing array of artists that will also be in the Under A Grand exhibition with Grandy Art:

    http://www.grandyart.com/exhibitions

    Hopefully see you there :)

    Monarch Butterflies

  • Upcoming Events

    We've got lots of things coming up this Christmas, from fairs to exhibitions and open studios.

    Like all organised people, we thought the best way to get ourselves organised was to create a list so here goes...

     

    Anna Wright Christmas Events

    Keep an eye out on Facebook, Twitter & the blog for more information and further details. In the meantime, don't forget to put them in your diary!

  • Creating Magnificent Creatures....

    With the launch of Anna's latest children's book, Magnificent Creatures, coming ever closer (3rd November to be exact) we thought we'd share a few pictures with you of Anna in the studio playing with fabric, feathers and putting the final touches to some of the images that went in the book.

    Surrounded by sketches and pots of ink... painting in the studio Surrounded by sketches and pots of ink... painting in the studio
    Anna in the studio playing around with fabric and feathers Anna in the studio playing around with fabric and feathers
    Snip Snip... cutting out shapes Snip Snip... cutting out shapes
    Adding the final touches to the Bee Eaters Adding the final touches to the Bee Eaters

    The book contains all sorts of creatures, from Zebra to Starling. Some were created using feathers, some are covered in colourful fabric and others are a gorgeous wash of inks, watercolours and pen.

    Here's a sneak - peek of the front cover.

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    The book is available to pre-order on our website now. Just follow the link:

    https://annawright.co.uk/product-range/books.html

    We hope you have as much fun reading it as Anna had creating it!

     

  • Come dry with us...

    Our tea towels have arrived!

    They have been a long time in the making...

    First we had to find the right fabric - we opted for 100% cotton that has a lovely weight to it and also holds the colour of Anna's designs very well.

    Then we had to decide which designs to use... we chose the fun Friday Night (perfect for those who like to boogie in the kitchen whilst cooking), the glamorous Show Off (for those that like to host fancy dinner parties) and the beautiful Pink Scales (for those who have a kitchen full of pattern and colour).

    Finally we had to get the colours right with samples too and fro-ing from our wonderful printers in Lancashire.

    Once we had that sorted the tea towels were then printed and sewn in the UK and shipped to their new homes - our Edinburgh studio. It was all smiles on the day they arrived - a box of joy!

     

    Here is a little close up so that you can get an idea of the colour and the tag that's sewn in

    Pink Scales Tea Towel

    After a little photo shoot they were ready to put online, ready for everyone to buy!

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    Even Anna has been getting stuck in with the drying up in the studio... (she was very good before but now she does it with a bigger smile)

    Anna Wright doing the drying Up

    You'll find the tea towels here on the website >>

    Do let us know what you think!

     

  • Making Cushions...behind the scenes.

    We've had a wonderful time in the studio playing around with fabrics and creating the new range of cushions. It's been 6 months in the making and we're so happy they're here!

    There are 3 new designs: Friday Night, Show Off and Parcel of Penguins.  The original drawings for the front of the cushions were drawn by Anna on a long roll of wallpaper which has given the cushions their unique long shape (60cm x 30cm). The patterns on the back of each cushion are different and  it was great opportunity for Anna to experiment with mark making; the patterns are wonderfully gestural and loose.

    We've been working closely with a brilliant printers in Lancashire who has managed to expertly capture the depth of colour in Anna's drawings. After endless samples and different types of fabric we finally got something we were happy with. Below are just some of the samples where we tested different colours.

    Fabric samples

    Thank you so much to our printers - you can see from this picture the level of detail in the watercolour marks that they have managed to pick up in the print!

    Show Off Fabric Detail

    The most exciting part of all was getting the Anna Wright woven labels sewn - a little touch of gold on every cushion!

    Anna Wright Woven LabelsAnd a big thank you goes to Ann, Gill and Alison in the Edinburgh studio who were there on the day the enormous pallet of cushions arrived. With their determination and muscles they managed to lug each one of the huge boxes filled with cushions up to the second floor studio. This is them when they arrived!

    The Cushions Have Arrived!
    And here are the pictures following a little photo-shoot outside the studio in London


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    Have you bought a cushion yet? If so, we'd love to hear what you think and see a picture of them in their new homes - please do send them to us!

  • Open Studios June 2016

     

    open studios 2On the 10th, 11th & 12th June we'll be opening up our studio doors to the public. It's a chance to come and see the space where Anna draws and buy some of her work at the same time!

    The studios are based in Clements Yard which is between Kennington and Elephant & Castle tube. There are three yards of studios that will be opening their doors and dozens of crafts people will be selling their wares... from pottery to jewellery, flowers and even delicious food.

    It's a great opportunity to see a lively creative community in London and to buy directly from the makers themselves.

    The doors open from 6.30 - 9pm on Friday 10th June and from 11am - 6pm on Sat 11th & Sun 12th June

    The address is:

    Clements yard, Iliffe Street, London, SE17 3LJ. For directions, click here >>

    For more information, visit the Pullens Yard website >>

    We look forward to seeing you there!

  • Chelsea Flower Show

    Having a studio in London is a real treat as there is so much going on in the big smoke that we are spoilt for choice. This week is the RHS Chelsea Flower show which is one of THE events of the summer, and Sophie, from our London studio, was lucky enough to get a ticket.

    There were so many beautiful colours, smells and designs that we thought it would be nice to share some of our favourites with you...

    All of the shops around Chelsea get involved with the show and have some wonderful floral designs outside. We thought this suit in a nearby tailors was especially natty...

    IMG_7293 A rather natty suit

    It's difficult to get up close to the gardens but it was amazing to be transported from the mediterranean to a typical english country garden in a matter of metres...

    Feeling like the Med Feeling like the Med
    Brilliant box hedges - like an English Country Garden Brilliant box hedges - like an English Country Garden

    We were even transported into what seemed like Mr McGregor's garden for all you Beatrix Potter lovers!

    Mr McGregor's garden Mr McGregor's garden

    The highlight was the smell from this hyacinth stand - it was wonderful and scented the whole tent!

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    And it wouldn't be an Anna Wright visit without spotting some beautiful birds:

    A Flower Humming Bird A Flower Humming Bird

    The most impressive scene of all were the thousands of poppies that had been knitted in memory of fallen soldiers. The grand backdrop of the Wren-designed Royal Chelsea Hospital was a wonderful setting for what was a very poignant display.

    Thousands of Knitted popies a carpet of thousands of knitted poppies

    If you do get a chance to visit then definitely go... and for those of you that haven't made it, we hope these pictures made it feel like you were there anyway ;)

     

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