One of my greatest loves is beautiful Modern Country Crafts: traditional rural craftiness given a delicious contemporary twist. And, in my Modern Country world, they don't come better than China Jack mosaics. Take a look at this utterly original splashback:
Do you remember China Jack were featured here on Modern Country Style almost seven years ago? I still get questions about those posts (see here and here)....
The designer and maker of my gorgeous Union Jack mosaic, Emily Lawlor (do names get any more English than that?!), has expanded her repertoire to include these stunning mosaic birds, so I thought it was about time we caught up with what's been happening since we last connected and, for those of you who are new here, to get to know the lovely Emily a little better....
Emily graduated with a First Class BA Hons from the Public Art and Design degree at Chelsea Art College in 1994. She specialised in ceramics and mosaics at Chelsea and has worked on public art commissions in hospitals, schools and libraries in London, the South East and Manchester. Emily now works from her Cotswolds studio, creating exquisite China Jack mosaics.
I had the chance to ask Emily a few questions and this is what she told me...
What has inspired you recently?
I have recently recovered from a stint in hospital and to say thank you to all the staff on the ward, I designed a card with a swallow bearing a ‘Thank you’ message in its beak. When I came out of hospital I started to think about birds carrying messages and started to work on some ideas for mosaic birds that could carry a message - say it with birds. I have a love of words so enjoyed playing with ideas for all the messages that the birds could carry.
And what are you currently working on?
Birds with Words is a unique gift idea to celebrate life events. Each mosaic is individually crafted with vintage china and mosaic glass, delivered in a lidded presentation box with a hand stamped label bearing your chosen message. You can choose from 12 messages available including greetings such as ‘Happy Birthday to a Rare Bird’ and “I’m Sorry I Ruffled Your Feathers’. Each bird measures approx 14 cm in length.
What materials do you use?
The birds are backed with birchwood ply and consist of vintage china sourced from flea markets, car boot sales and auction rooms and porcelain mosaics. The mosaics create beautiful handmade artworks for the home that fuse pattern and colour – each one completely unique.
It's hard to put into words just how breath-taking Emily's work is. The attention to detail, the quality of each tile cut, the calibre of the china used, all make each and every China Jack piece stand out from anything you've seen, whether its something from her website or something entirely bespoke....
I am the very proud owner of two China Jack pieces and they are some of my favourite things in the world. I never tire of staring at them, taking in every inch of their glory.
Complete Modern Country heaven!