Sunday, 2 September 2012

profile dandi - caroline davis.

caroline davis of dandi
To celebrate the start of spring I thought it was fitting to profile the work of Sydney based design studio Dandi which creates botanically-inspired prints and applies them to their specialised textile and homewares. Created by three very talented industrial designers Mindi McBride, Manuela Strano and Caroline Davis the trio share a passion for interior trends, beautiful fabrics and timeless style. Lilly pillies, gum leafs, olive branches and hydrangea prints feature in their fabric range, in addition to bamboo plates etched with pretty patterns inspired by ferns, orange trees and bay trees. Beautiful for spring and your table top!

How would you describe yourself?
Colourful, collector, foodie, crafter and busy.

What was your childhood dream?
I wanted to be a painter with a big studio where I could be free to make a huge mess and not have to clean it up!

Pin Board - Plain Dyed Duckegg
What led you down your current path?
I’ve always made bits and pieces out paper and fabrics, so I always knew my career would be hands on. I always loved flicking through the pages of interior magazines and thought I wanted to work as a graphic designer doing the layout design. Then I had a light bulb moment and realised it was what the products featured in the magazines that I craved. That’s what led me to study Industrial Design at University; I’m now happily designing Dandi products and fabrics.

What do you love most about what you do?
Designing beautiful products that celebrate colour and print and having the freedom to work in an industry I love and with a team that constantly inspires me. 

Where do you feel most inspired?
As long as I’m near nature, inspiration comes knocking! A pot of tea, a block of dark chocolate, a comfy day bed, a beautiful view and a sketchpad – bliss.

Who do you admire?
I admire creative women who seem to effortlessly find the right balance in their lives with work and family.

What challenges have you had to overcome?
Building a business takes time; you need to stay true to yourself.

What's been a 'pinch yourself' moment?
When I see the Dandi products in stores or I walk past a beautiful window display and hear passersby say – “oh I love that” - I feel a bit like a spy but I feel very content that people love that range as much as I do.

What are your top creative resources?
All the Dandi ladies love reading the online Adore Home Magazine; it’s bursting with colours and prints.
Share Design is another goodie with a fantastic newsletter.

We can’t go past Habitus Living!

When it comes to music we’re shockers really, we play Best of The 80’s Hits in the Dandi studio. 

What is your idea of happiness?
Family. Happiness is always family.

What's next?
We have just released a new range of cosmetic bags, traditionally Dandi have stuck to kitchenware and homewares, so dipping the toe in the beauty market is exciting for us.  We have some pretty bold designs in the pipeline too!

When the weekend rolls around what do you love to:
Read – Lift outs in the newspapers.
Watch – love watching boats on the harbour at our local beach.
Cook – Coconut macaroons dipped in dark chocolate.
Create this weekend I’m sewing a 1950’s cocktail dress out of Dandi fabrics for fellow designer Mindi as a surprise (shh).
Listen – I’m listening to my 10-month-old son learning new words, it’s so cute.
Dream – about holidays, a beach holiday in the sun.

the dandi team - mindi mcbride, manuela strano & caroline davis