The Happy Design trend is on the rise, there’s optimism in the air, and this bright, floral fabric is the definition of pure joy
We reveal the season’s most eye-catching fabric: ‘Manchu’ by Designers Guild
Designers Guild’s latest range of fabrics and wallpapers, ‘Jaipur Rose’, has a hint of Mexican artist Frida Kahlo’s confident use of colour (see London’s V&A blockbuster summer exhibition, ‘Frida Kahlo: Making Her Self Up’), but it also draws inspiration from another historically influential female, Isabella Bird. A clergyman’s daughter from Yorkshire, born in 1831, Bird travelled to North America, Japan, Korea, China, India and Kurdistan, as well as many other destinations, in pursuit of warmer climes to ease her ill health – journeys rarely heard of for a woman in her time. On her travels, she became a keen photographer and writer, documenting the exotic places she visited. It’s these pictures and recollections that were the starting point for this new range.
The collection’s standout design is ‘Manchu’ (pictured), a printed cotton linen featuring cosmos, peonies and dahlias painted in watercolour, seen here against a spicy lime and paprika-coloured fretwork motif. Other patterns feature tropical leaves (‘Arjuna Leaf’) and feathers (‘Tulsi’), all equally fun and bright. ‘Manchu’ in ‘Alchemilla’, £69 per metre, Designers Guild (designersguild.com).