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That Liberty box and the freelance leap

"What about that box you did?" said my husband recently - referring to a design project I worked on for Liberty and Bloom & Wild a few years ago. This got me thinking, I've written a couple of pieces here about my creative career but not yet mentioned it. The Liberty box was a proud moment, not just because I adore Liberty, but also it reminds me of the point in time I became fully freelance in 2017. It can be scary to make that kind of leap but it meant I could cherry-pick the projects and brands I wanted to design for, while also making time for my own independent work. (There's a post about my stationery phase here and another about how it all began in museums here). Five years on, I'm still working with a lovely clutch of clients and I wouldn't change that 'leap' for the world.

Anyway, back to the box. It's not a long story but a personal highlight because I do love Liberty; the store crafted from an old ship, the hand drawn prints, the memories it conjures of my Granny sewing. All of it. (And there's more of the latter in the post 'A Floral Background'.)

So what was the Liberty project? I had been doing some freelance design work with the Bloom & Wild team for a little while when they called me back in to collaborate in-house on the packaging for their upcomming collaboration with Liberty print. As my background is in graphic design - and my heart in print - I was over the moon to help. If you're a design geek too, you'll know this meant going from admiring those pretty archival prints from afar, to getting stuck right into the nitty gritty of the print artwork itself. Unpicking patterns with a finetooth comb to rework blooms and tendrils around the shape of the boxes and the text we wanted to include. I spent many happy hours lost in pattern and it's safe to say I was in my element. I was also able to learn, retracing the steps of those designers from the past by seeing just how they had constructed each print. The memory still gives me designer goosebumps now!

The Bloom and Wild x Liberty Print collaboration, 2018. Four bouquets were designed to chime with an archival print.

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