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Meet 'Afterglow' print designer Rachel Parker

Hello, I'm Steph, the founder of Postix! Lately, I've been collaborating with designers from around the world to curate a collection of stylish sticker accessories.

My background in textile design during university sparked my passion for abstract and playful prints. Combining this with my love for stickers, I envisioned transforming textile prints into fashionable and enjoyable sticker folders.

For our inaugural line of sticker storage folders, I sought out the talent of UK designer Rachel Parker, known for her brilliant bright prints. This collaboration aimed to encapsulate the exuberance of sticker joy while catering to a diverse adult audience.

Rachel, based in Northamptonshire, UK, brought a unique perspective to our project. Here's our Q&A with Rachel.

 

Firstly, tell us about the Afterglow pattern, what's the inspiration behind it?

Afterglow is part of an abstract series inspired by the changing light. I wanted to create a rainbow design that didn't feel like a cliche, something beautiful and soft that draws you in, but still packs a punch when it comes to colour!

The shapes were inspired by refracted light, they make me think of sunlight bouncing off a window just after it's rained. I really love the warmth and movement in the finished piece.

 

To begin with, can you tell me a bit about your design background?

I have a degree in Textiles from Norwich University of the Arts in the UK, where I developed my love for pattern and colour. We were encouraged to have an experimental approach to design rather than following a set path, which is why I'm so eager to design for a wide range of products rather than just fabric.

A design comes alive in different ways when printed on different surfaces, and there's magic in that.

The prints we pick for fashion and stationery convey a sense of our personality and style. Can you describe your own personal style, and how would it influence your designs?

I'm often drawn to designs that show the artist's hand through texture, layering, painterly marks, etc. I always try to carry that through to my work, so that even a geometric print with many straight lines maintains that unique, handmade quality.

Colour is so important in my work; it's one of the things I'm best known for. I always try to be experimental and create unique colour palettes that are a few steps away from the trends.

 

If your designs could talk, what would it say about the person who is attracted to your sense of creativity?

The people who like my designs are colourful, inclusive and kind! I've slowly grown a meaningful following over the last 11 years working in this industry which I'm so grateful for.

Many people who've purchased my art or followed me on Instagram have gone on to become people that I consider to be genuine friends, which is the amazing power that art can have.

 


The inside of the Afterglow sticker folder features Rachel's print "Happy Squares".

 

Where do you look for inspiration for your ideas?

The natural world provides a lot of inspiration, whether that be a landscape, a flower, a shell, a shadow or maybe just the feeling that you get from a place.

I always take tonnes of photos to refer back to; sometimes they'll sit in my cameral roll for years and then I'll randomly rediscover one that will spark something brand new. If I'm feeling creatively stuck, then a walk with the dogs somewhere green usually does the trick!

 

If you could redesign any famous logo or brand identity in your style, which one would it be and what would you do?

I think it would be really cool to see my designs on a classic VW campervan! My boyfriend and I have a converted van which we travel a lot in. It has curtains in my design and I've kind of toyed with the idea of painting the outside with some funky patterns, but it would be amazing to collaborate with the experts!

Each van has its unique features and quirks, plus people love seeing them on the road, so I think they lend themselves to some happy, colourful patterns.

 

What are some design trends or styles that you believe will gain popularity in the near future?

Retro florals, broken checks and metallics are ones that spring to mind. I always try to keep an eye on trends but cherry pick the ones that are appealing; someone once said to me that you should try and be the next trend rather than follow existing ones, and I like that!

 

Stationery sometimes serves as a keepsake or memento. What are some of the feelings you hope people get with your designs on stationery pieces?

I always hope to design pieces that people will gift to a loved one and cherish long after their initial use. I have notebooks and pieces of stationery that I'll keep forever, not only because they were designed beautifully but because they were a gift from someone I love, or they were part of a particular time in my life. I love that my stationery designs might become little treasures for someone else out there.

 

Rachel's Afterglow print is currently available on our sticker folders and will be available on washi tape and travelling postcards later in 2024.

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