Our third interview in our Meet The Maker Series is with homeware designer Bell Hutley. Bell's iconic and colourful placemats have been on the top of our wish list for a while now. Join us as we chat to Bell about her unique products, her sources of inspiration and what the future holds for the brand. Bell has also chosen a lovely selection of her favourite presents from our online showroom.
I set up my brand in 2018. It was a sort of lightbulb moment, I was sitting on the train daydreaming about how my art could be my career. I had always bought second hand homeware products like lamp shades and trays and painted over them. I had always loved writing and illustrating stories. I thought to myself why can’t I use homeware as my canvas and tell stories through my products.
Yes. Since I could remember I was always drawing. I was never any good when I was little, my style grew and one day just clicked into place. I had an amazing art teacher at school who I still keep in contact with.
I always try to put a piece of myself in my work, if I feel truly connected and moved by the story/collection I’ve created then I feel so passionate and excited about it (I have two tattoos that are in my collections!). I really try to stay away from trends, always pushing my style and try to create work that hasn’t been done before.
Everyday is a constant source of inspiration for me. I’m always picking up little gems throughout my day. But my main source of inspiration would be children's books, nature and the changing seasons, art and history of art. I am completely obsessed with English art, history, paganism, witchcraft, I could go on and on!
That’s such a hard question, but I’d say that it is the new product I am creating for the first time. Nothing's more exciting than working with new materials, seeing how my designs translate, and seeing the new product for the first time.
But the product I use the most in my life and I am constantly excited about it are my tumblers
There is no right or wrong, I am not a perfectionist and find that my favourite tables are ones where you find special things around the house to decorate with, or small wild flower arrangements. I love DIY, it’s more personal and special.
Creating lots of new designs and products, continuing to tell stories through my art. Working with other amazing brands, people and companies. I am so lucky to be doing what I’m doing so anything is a plus!