London Print Design Fair

Last week I went to the London Print Design Fairย ๐ŸŽจwith Potterton Books ๐Ÿ“šwho were exhibiting. ย This was rather a fun affair. ย The idea behind it is, if you are designing or product developing clothing or accessories ๐Ÿ‘ ๐Ÿ‘—, you either need inspiration for your next collection, or you need to purchase prints to use. ย So people such a Topshop ๐Ÿ‘ and Next ๐Ÿ‘—and M & S ๐Ÿ‘˜ potter along and browse the prints – you can either buy them exclusively, and no one else can use that print – it is yours, but it’s pricey ๐Ÿ’ฐ, or you buy a print design and hope your competitor ๐Ÿ™ doesn’t have the same idea.

We were rather different – Potterton Books ๐Ÿ“š bring along many 1940s ๐Ÿ’ƒ hand painted prints, and original fabrics – you can buy the originals, and you can even buy a whole fabric book ๐Ÿ““. ย We also reproduce them in booklets ๐Ÿ“˜๐Ÿ“—, so you can buy a booklet full of prints, but there is the risk that someones else might be using the same idea. ย We suggest you don’t reproduce the print exactly – copyright can be difficult, but there is nothing to stop you changing the colours๐Ÿ’›๐Ÿ’™, or the design very slightly and using it as your own.

Most other people exhibiting produce their own ‘exclusive prints’ย for you to buy and use in your next collection.

It was truly fascinating – NO PHOTOS ALLOWED ๐Ÿ“ทโŒ – everyone was quite tetchy ๐Ÿ™…. ย I did catch a lady surreptitiously photographing some of our prints and she scarpered pretty quickly ๐Ÿ™†. ย And designers and buyers are sneaky – they call up and say – ‘the print we were looking at earlier, my boss wants to see it, could you send a photo?’ ๐Ÿ’ Well, not really, because then you have the image without having purchased it…. iPhones ๐Ÿ“ฑand digital cameras ๐Ÿ“ทdo make it trickier.

There were all sorts there – designers ๐Ÿ‘ฆ, students ๐Ÿ‘ง, buyers ๐Ÿ‘ฉ, and we had a lovely chat with a lady who is an artist ๐Ÿ™‹๐ŸŽจ. ย She paints designs, the printing companies buy them, reproduce them and sell them to designers, who then use them for their collections. ย She said she has, on occasion, spotted someone on the street wearing a skirt or top with her original design ๐Ÿ’ƒ๐ŸŽจ.

My favourite part was the vintage clothing ๐Ÿ‘— section. ย So these vintage sellers buy individual pieces, and then sell them on to designers – ย Topshop ๐Ÿ‘  can buy a vintage garment and either reproduce it exactly, use the pattern or design, or just use it for inspiration. ย We had a chat with Samantha at Miniola, who alsoย very kindly allowed me to photograph ๐Ÿ“ท๐Ÿ’ƒ some of her clothing. ย What I find fun about it, is that because the pieces they acquire aren’t for your normal vintage retail consumer, they can go a bit off the rail. ย There were some truly marvellous items of clothing – I rather wanted to buy some ๐Ÿ‘ฐ.

It was a very interesting day – and rather makes me want to become a product developer, perhaps for a small company, and take inspiration from all sorts of exciting things.

Alice xxx

On the way – it was The Queen’s Birthday
Arrived at the Lindley Hall
Found Potterton – print designs
Fabric books
Great sleeves – buying clothes should still be like this
Flamingo print
Fair in full swing
Even the people were colourful
We were selling Cabana magazine โค๏ธ๐Ÿ’š
And there were vintage clothes by Miniola
Chesca came to say hi

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