file 009 Linda Williams (designer)

Beautiful designs from a Seaside town

This November, we feature “Obiko” in our Textile Story column. Here is an interview from Linda Williams, Obiko’s designer. Kokka-fabric digs into the story behind her creative work.

(photo: sketches) (KF): You now live in Hastings, a seaside town on the South East Coast of England. Is it a place where you grew up or did you move there with positive intent?

I was born in the City of Oxford and over the years have moved around the UK. I have also lived and worked both in Portugal and Switzerland.
I moved from London to Hastings 10 years ago. Living by the sea was an important factor for the move and one which I thoroughly love.

(KF)How would you describe Hastings?

Hastings is primarily a fishing town with 90,000 inhabitants and is home to Europe’s largest beach-launched fishing fleet. It also has Britain’s steepest funicular. Hastings has a thriving art and music scene which attracts many artists to its shores and sees many different art festivals throughout the year. The meandering alleyways of the Old Town are always worth a visit. My favourite part of Hastings is on top of the East Hill, I am lucky enough to see it through my kitchen window. It’s a quiet space in Hastings Country Park Nature Reserve where I can overlook the town and take in the beautiful views.

(photo: Hasting’s beach)
(photo: beach finds)

(KF)How has Hastings inspired you in creating your designs?  

Hastings plays a large part in my creative thoughts. I especially enjoy the beach in the summer where I can swim and sketch the afternoon away. The sea has a calming influence and I am able to focus on my work without distractions – often coming up with some of my best ideas.

(photo: on Hasting beach)

(KF)How does your daily life unfold?

My day always begins with a fresh cup of coffee. I then go up to the studio for 8.30am and then go through my emails. I will then update my instagram, twitter and facebook accounts @obikodesign and see what orders need to be completed. I would love to say I design all day, but running a business takes up most of the time with the creative part being only a small part of what I do. I will always find time to take a break from the studio and go for a short walk, which helps me recharge.
At present I am working on a new collaboration which is always exciting and designing new patterns for 2016. I try to be out of the studio by 8pm, but more often then not I still find myself working.

(photo: ink doodles)

(photo: My drawing pencils and pens)

(KF) What are your biggest ambitions you’re willing to share?

My ambitions for Obiko is to have a store with a small cafe. It will sell one-off Obiko designs and art work alongside other independent artists. I will offer the perfect cup of coffee with a menu of savoury and sweet snacks.

My personal ambitions are to travel more and sing in a band. I took up guitar lessons at the beginning of the year which I love. I have even given myself a stage name – which will remain a secret for the time being…

(photo: Obiko logo envelope)

(KF)Lastly, please give your message to our readers.

This has been my first collaboration with Kokka and I have really enjoyed working with the team. It has been and continues to be a wonderful experience.
I hope you enjoy the Obiko designs which lend themselves to many individual creative projects.
I can’t wait to receive the quality fabrics myself. Not being the greatest of sewers I think I will keep my first project simple and make a scarf in the Canary rose design.
Enjoy the fabrics.

(photo: Canary rose)

(photo: Linda in Paris)

(KF) Thank you.