Last month I had the pleasure and privilege to meet a wonderful clothing designer and maker named Amy Laws. For those of you unfamiliar with her work, take a look at her etsy store, Theres Only One Amy Laws, here which is full of her gorgeous hand-made, hand-printed clothing. She’s also a regular at the markets in and around her hometown of Bath.

I’ve been intrigued about screen printing for a long time now, having tried it many years ago on my Art Foundation course. Meeting Amy was particularly inspiring since she has developed her entire business from home, turning her bathroom into a dark room and her lounge into a sewing studio!

Here’s a little behind-the-scenes of how Amy creates her beautiful prints…

First she takes some silk mesh (32 or 48T) and some wood to make the frame. The wood is cut to size and the mesh pulled tightly across it and secured in place with a staple gun to make the ‘screen.’












She covers the screen with PHOTO EMULSION, which is a light-sensitive liquid that is applied in the dark using a squeegee. She makes sure the liquid is spread evenly, leaving a thin film on the mesh and then it’s left to dry in the dark for about 8 hours – nothing quick about this part!




Amy creates her designs using Adobe Illustrator and then prints them off from her computer onto acetate. When the screen is ready to expose, Amy puts it onto some black fabric and lays her design across the mesh, with some glass on top to hold it flush against it. The image is always black and goes on the outside of the screen, (which is the part which will eventually make contact with the fabric). She shines a 400 watt light directly onto the screen for about 20 mins (times do vary) but the black design protects the photo emulsion beneath from the light.

IMG_2035When it’s exposed, she rinses it with cold water and a sponge to remove the photo emulsion and leaves to dry in the natural light. As if by magic, the area which was covered by the black image has now had the design transferred to the mesh and is ready to print with!





IMG_2030Amy prepares her fabric and gets her (water-based) inks ready. She tapes around the edges on both sides with parcel tape to stop any ink leaking out the sides. She takes a squeegee and does one, preliminary drag of the ink down the screen without the fabric underneath. She often sticks the fabric to the work surface to stop it moving (and sometimes G-clamps to hold the screen in place). Then, with the screen laid onto the fabric, she drags the ink across to complete the first print.












Finally, here’s a preview of one of Amy’s latest designs, ready for Spring/Summer 15!




(buy the dress now by clicking here)

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Good luck Amy and wishing you every success with your gorgeous new designs!

Zoe x


Holidaying in Jesolo, you could be forgiven for thinking that beyond the beach and numerous bars that line the streets, it’s a seaside destination like any other.

But then you stumble upon ‘L’arlecchino’ (The Harlequin), a hidden gem of a shop, selling made-to-measure clogs and beautiful, artisan leather accessories and you realise you have discovered something very special.

Spying the rolled-up skins and sewing machine behind the counter, I was immediately enticed to enter and, upon opening the door, was greeted by a friendly couple and the familiar smell of authentic leather.

Giorgio and Lella have devoted 30 years to their leather business and their skill and passion is evident everywhere you look, from the delicate, wrap-around bracelets, to the hand-crafted, pony-skin bags and wooden sandals that line the walls. Their work is imaginatively displayed; perched on tables and shelves or peeking out from cupboards and trunks and there is a wonderful, vintage vibe adding to the atmosphere.

I left with a beautiful, studded bracelet – a gift from the boy – and the thought firmly planted in my head that this would really be a fantastic job to have…

I hope to return soon, not only to purchase a pair of shoes but to find out more about Giorgio, Lella and their captivating workshop! In the meantime, here is a small selection of the treasures to be found inside L’arlecchino…

Ciao for now,

Zoe x

Address : Via Bafile 145 30016 Jesolo (VE)

Telefone : 0421 92236 / Fax: 0421 92236

E-mail :

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(All images used with permission from L’Arlecchino)