Behind the scenes with Textile Designer Jane Hills
Read the interview...
Tell us a bit about your design background and what you do at Mountain Buggy ?
I completed a Bachelor of Design; majoring in Textile Design at Massey University here in Wellington. I finished in 2009 with first class honors. I have since worked in both New Zealand and the Netherlands, applying my skills in the fields of fashion, interiors and product design. At Mountain Buggy I design textile prints, select fabric colors and material types.
When and why did Mountain Buggy decide to introduce special edition fabrics?
In 2014 we relaunched the whole MB platform. This was an opportunity to revisit our product range and develop a new fashion-forward look and feel. The first special editions launched were the pepita and nautical prints , for Mountain Buggy’s new luxury collection . I worked on textile design and sourcing luxury materials to enhance the range. These were followed with our first Chinese zodiac print - Year of the Monkey.
Where did the idea come from to use the Chinese Zodiac signs?
We work closely with our team in China and are proud of the connection and guānxì we have with our suppliers. We are a global brand, and these unique prints are a way to express ourselves whilst furthering our cultural appeal. We are lucky to be able to collaborate with a strong team in our offices in both New Zealand as well as PRC. It is important that our designs can be appreciated not only by families that hold high esteem for Chinese astrology but also those who appreciate unique print designs - it’s about appealing to the masses!
How do you approach the decision making process for each ‘year of’ special edition?
It all starts with research into what that ‘year of’ means; colors, symbols, flowers. Our Creative Director, Laura, and I then decide on the desired print style/direction and the concept development stems from here.
Tell us about the current ‘silhouettes’ special edition print?
Year of the Dog ‘silhouettes’ is my favorite MB print to date. Our previous two prints for Monkey and Rooster were classics which did well in market, so for 2018, we looked further than print design and explored innovative textiles. My designs have always been influenced by fashion, and ‘silhouettes’ is no different. Inspired by the likes of Hugo Boss, Issey Miyake and Balmain; ‘silhouettes’ was driven by innovation. It captures the imagination and reinvents the ‘norm’ in the nursery world. During the design development stage for ‘silhouettes’ , the print was developed as a flat black 2D image, drawn by hand and then made into a digital seamless repeat. It wasn't until we received the first holographic print strike off that the project literally 'came to light'.
Tell us a little something about next year's design?
We are currently refining concepts for Year of the Pig! Stay tuned :)