Erin was one of the first artists we connected with when starting DESEDA in 2018. We were immediately drawn to her aesthetic, which is a beautifully modern take on the handcrafted. While Erin has significant design experience in textiles and home goods, collaborating with DESEDA was an opportunity to bring her signature approach to silk scarves for the first time. Erin's POJAGI scarf design was inspired by the centuries-old Korean tradition of wrapping objects with lovely quilted textiles of the same name. Any gift wrapped in a handmade pojagi is a symbol of respect for the gift and a symbol of affection and goodwill toward the recipient (which we find pretty apropos for a scarf has become a gift for so many!). With her QUALITY OF LINE scarf design Erin pushed outside of her typical colorway comfort zone in marrying a feminine array of blush and raspberry tones with her signature hand-drawn line textures and modern simplicity. In this DESEDA Artist Collective (DearCo) Interview she shares more about her creative background and what moves her. Let’s Make Ties and get to know Erin…Read on!
DESEDA Artist Collective (DearCo) Artist:
San Diego, California
DESEDA Scarf Designs: Pojagi and Quality of Line
Please introduce yourself and share what you do!
I’m a textile and surface pattern designer, and the founder of Cotton & Flax, a home decor company creating patterned home goods in California. In 2018, I opened our flagship retail store in San Diego, which also acts as my design studio.
What was your path to becoming a creative?
I studied fine art at UC Santa Cruz, where I discovered printmaking and fell in love! The process is like nothing else I’d even encountered -- a beautiful blend of rigid method, chemistry, and mark making possibilities that can’t be replicated with other media. There’s really something special about printing by hand, and artists have been using these techniques and methods for hundreds of years.
After completing my degree, I moved back to my hometown of Portland, Oregon, and made a little home for myself in the local printmaking community there. I was making more experimental work at that time, and stumbled into printing on fabric during a collaboration with another artist. My love of fabrics and textiles really snowballed from there, and I founded Cotton & Flax a few years later.
I’ve been offering my textile decor through Cotton & Flax since 2012, and it’s been a super engaging journey for me. Life as a textile designer is always surprising me.
How do you describe your work? And, what do you hope others take away from your work?
I describe my work as being handcrafted. I take care to leave a bit of wabi-sabi imperfection in all my designs, which are initially drawn by hand with sumi ink. I hope that folks will notice my love of fluid, imperfect line, and how that organic quality brings life to my designs.
What motivates you to do what you do?
Wanting to improve. I’m always learning, growing, and trying to gracefully evolve into the next stage of my design work.
Where do you find your most significant inspiration?
Watching my creative friends innovate and create from the heart.
What are the plans for the next phase of your artistic and/or professional journey?
I’d like to work on larger scale projects that could build community around art and design! Murals, designer collaborations, and local events are all on my radar for this year.
What is/are the signature element(s) of your personal style?
All black everything.
What music is on heavy rotation for you right now?
I’ve got the Funky Jams spotify station on in the shop most days… can’t get enough of Kool and the Gang.
What is the favorite place you’ve visited?
What is the last thing that really caught your eye or got stuck in your head?
I love seeing Nicole Crowder’s upholstery process on Instagram.
What are your favorite websites and/or Instagram profiles?
Tactile Matter for the coolest ceramics and beautiful paintings. Laure Joliet to see an interiors photographer who is a master of light. Folia Collective for a daily dose of green.
What’s on your current wish list? (Can be any things, places or experiences!)
Time off to travel!
What’s the best nugget of advice you’ve received and would like to share with others?
Rest, drink water, and wear sunscreen. It’s so boring, but it’s the only thing that works.
And, we’d love to wrap up with the two signature questions that we refer to as the “Double Knot” 😊:
Please share an example of a time in your life where you said, “why not” and took on a big risk, challenge or leap of faith!
Saying, “I love you,” first. :)
Please share why you “made ties” with DESEDA and teamed up to create an original scarf design with us!
The opportunity to design a piece that could remain in someone’s wardrobe for decades: priceless!
Note: all photos courtesy of @cottonandflax