A few weeks ago, we ventured out to Brooklyn to meet Allison Kettlewell at her studio. The textile designer responsible for the lovely Suzanne Tucker Home fabrics previously worked with Donghia and Zimmer + Rohde. We were eager to hear about the process behind creating a fabric line, designed in Brooklyn, for a San Francisco-based designer. This year happens to be the 25th Anniversary of Tucker & Marks, the firm Suzanne started with her husband that now boasts a staff of 26 people. Here's what Kettlewell had to say.
"I make monthly trips out to the office in San Francisco. Most of our designs start from what Suzanne says she can't find in the market. Suzanne and I have a shared love of antique textiles, hand-stitching and translating the inspiration we gather on travels. I'm really a hunter and gatherer, and Suzanne is so attuned to the details -- like the ground cloth of a print and its quality."
"Truly, if I had to describe what differentiates us, it's that this is really a textile lover's line. No detail has been missed."
[We couldn't get enough of the amazing samples that fill her studio - hanging, folded, and amazingly orderly.]
"Even our plains aren't plain - like Vanessa [pictured below], with very subtle colors that you don't see at first glance, which make them more livable, easier to integrate into a space because they can "absorb" surrounding colors in the room."
"And Gabrielle, I call a weaving miracle. This design [pictured below] came from a tiny sample Suzanne found in Coco Chanel's private atelier."
"It's such a treat designing this line, because before when I worked with big fabric houses, I was always on a budget. But we introduce something when it's right, when the hand feels good and maybe has a tumbled feel, and the color saturation is right. Suzanne isn't conservative, but she's very thoughtful. She chose not to go the license route when she launched her fabrics, which certainly would have been easier."
This cotton-velvet Duma, is a perfect example of a touch-me hand. It was inspired by Suzanne's trip to Africa.
Check back soon when we'll share the rest of our visit - including all about color.
Have a look back at their new introductions from earlier this summer and from this Spring. See the finished product of their collaboration at Thomas Lavin at the PDC and Holland & Sherry at the DDB.