island*atelier © 2008-2017

This hotel was just too stunning not to feature. Located on the coast of San José del Cabo, the Hotel Mar Adentro is inspired by, built around and located next to water. The resort is entirely surrounded by a shallow reflective pool which gives the illusion of a floating oasis. At its centre is an oval swimming pool lined by custom teak lounges overlooking the sea. A dark concrete path parts the waters, leading to a 40,000 square-foot beach club where guests are served on built-in sunbeds from the food truck kitchen. Every guest room offers Poliform furniture, walk-in closets, covered terraces, and floor-to-ceiling glazing. Their minimal design and muted palette allow the ocean to be the main focus. 

Swedish designers Stoft Studio were intrigued with the idea of the old and the new, the ancient and the modern and it was from this that the Whittle Away collection was born. Consisting of an armoire and a smaller cupboard that can be wall-mounted, the exterior is made up of planks of wood that have been stripped back like the bark of a tree to reveal the bright natural algae paint colours underneath. As the outer skin unfurls, something new and unspoilt that has lain dormant is revealed. The result is a paired-down minimalism combined with a certain colourful homeliness, the simple form of which is evocative of handicrafts of the past.

Whittle Away was commissioned for the exhibition What’s your DNA? and presented during Dutch Design Week 2017.

Graeme Mortimer Evelyn illustration

We came across the drawings and sculpture of Graeme Mortimer Evelyn, a Jamaican multi-media visual artist, musician and curator recently, a surprising fact given that he has won several large commissions and his artwork appears in numerous municipal buildings, sites of memory and places of worship as well as being displayed and collected in Princeton University's Center for African American Studies, Cornell University, Kensington Palace, The Royal Commonwealth Society, Museum in Docklands, Gloucester Cathedral, Watershed and M-Shed Bristol.

Evelyn's varied body of work is a subversion of the institutional. He comments on cultural social identity, politics and language, describing these narratives as forming “when fragments of relation, memory, society, identity and modernity, which seem disparate at first, come together to form a whole”. Evelyn has developed a reputation for creating work that is situated in municipal buildings, sites of memory and places of worship that subvert these settings and philosophies. His intention is that his art acts as a catalyst; attracting new audiences to seek alternative dialogues and challenging questions, enabling a democratisation of public spaces. Much of his work deals with Black history, reparation and reconciliation as well as societal conflict. In 2011, Evelyn was Artist-in-Residence at St. Stephen’s Church Bristol and commissioned to create a large scale permanent contemporary altarpiece entitled the Reconciliation Reredos. Set within one of the oldest churches in Bristol, historically significant as the harbour church that blessed every merchant slave vessel before their voyage; the Reconciliation Reredos is a contemporary artwork of universal reconciliation, that responds to the church’s past, reflects the voices of the city today while representing the potential of the future. The work has established Evelyn as the first ever Black British Artist to complete such a commission in Europe.

In addition to his art, Evelyn also works with film such as the video essay he made in 2007 entitled The Two Coins: Meditations on Trade. This poignant, factual and objective work was filmed staging imagined historical reenactments within UNESCO heritage sites and locations in Ghana, Mali, Malawi and the UK, documenting the dormant history of the Trans-Atlantic slave trade as silent meditation.

Evelyn continues to develop a new bodies of work. He is currently commissioned as Artist-in-Residence by the Diocese of London to create a Reredos - permanent large scale contemporary altarpiece - entitled The Eternal Engine for St Francis at the Engine Room in Tottenham Hale, the first new Anglican church to be built in the capital in almost 40 years.

KAWS, Uniqlo, and Peanuts are back again with another highly anticipated collaboration. Out in the US today, November 20 and in the UK on November 24, the monochromatic collection consists of what Uniqlo does best: traditional street wear including crew-necked tee-shirts, sweatshirts and hoodies in black and white but also includes bags and a completely black Snoopy plush in two sizes that is sure to be one of the most coveted pieces. Part of Uniqlo’s LifeWear concept which reimagines various pop culture icons, the limited colourway gives the collection a certain gravitas as the line is designed to  appeal to as wide an audience as possible. In keeping with Uniqlo's moderate price range, items will retail between $10 to $40.

The Piper Range by GibsonKarlo for DesignByThem pairs indoor quality and charm with outdoor durability, creating a range that is visually light, distinctive and versatile. The designers wanted to create an outdoor range with the look, feel and quality of an indoor set. The backrest and seat of the chair can be interchanged with various colours and upholstery finishes creating a unique look. The Piper table with its standard compact laminate surface is available in various sizes - from café to dining - and finishes. The contrasting colours accentuate the design, and the strong lines highlight and frame the design in the same way windows and architraves are highlighted in buildings.

Made from 304 stainless steel with a powder coat finish, the Piper Range is designed to withstand outdoor elements whilst providing comfort with its subtle curves. 

We love these moulded rubber bags from the Spring 2018 collection of Xiao Li.

A sophisticated, monochromatic collection from Aquilano.Rimondi who looked to painter and sculptor Joan Miró for inspiration for the colours used. There was an abundance of tailored pieces and an interesting use of topstitching and texture whether it be via the loose knit layers draped over a dress or dresses in pleated patent leather. Torsos were defined by huge, cinched belts at the waist or hip.

We hesitated to feature this collection but something about it drew us in. Perhaps it was the fact that Bermudian model Lily Lightbourne headlined the show or maybe that her flower of choice was the distinctly tropical Hibiscus, one that doesn't often appear in high fashion circles. In any event, we loved the juxtaposition of the island flower on the thick coats and jackets or the fur pouches that were slung around the models' waists. It was a pretty heavy collection - literally and figuratively - for Spring that featured pretty patterns and a judicious use of fur.

We aren't into whimsy or overt femininity, but something about the freshness of Luisa Beccaria's collection really drew us in. She showed breezy printed chiffon dresses, embroidered tulle  and flowing skirts in stretch cotton ticking stripe. The fact that the feminine silhouettes were combined with masculine influences might have helped. Here, floral patterns were tempered with graphic dots and stripes all of which helped to moderate what could have otherwise been an overwhelmingly saccharine collection.