One on One with Virginia Langley
7th March 2014
One on One with Virginia Langley interviewed by Brintons' Designer Jaime Ross
Q: What first inspired you to become a designer? How old were you when you realized this is what you wanted to do?
A: For as long as I can remember I had a passion to draw and paint. As a little girl I would spend hours with crayons or watercolor paints, apparently drawing or painting objects in nature: horses, flowers & anything to do with the seaside were my favorites. My father is an artist in portrait & wildlife fine art in New Zealand, my grandmother paints abstract contemporary florals in England & my brother is a designer in the movie business, so it's in the blood!
Q: How did you get into this industry?
A: After studying Graphic Design, I worked initially in advertising for BBDO, one of the worlds largest advertising agencies. I then had an opportunity in a textile company to assist in designing, from a designers perspective, software for the textile industry (this software was initially TCS from Manchester, UK & later became known as Nedgraphics Print & Tru Colour).
Q: This is our first collection with you, but you’ve built an impressive reputation for your textile and carpet design. When did you first start designing for textiles and carpet?
A: My first Design position in textiles was with a British based fabric company in South Africa. I designed fabrics for the fashion / apparel market & home decor, their largest customers being Marks & Spencer & Woolworth's.
Q: You are from Europe and I have heard that you travel quite often. What role does your travel experience play in your inspiration for designs?
A: That's correct, I am originally British, although I was born in Africa. My family have travelled & moved a fair bit & I have developed a love for travel & exploring! There are so many magical & wondrous places in this world & each place I visit fills me with inspirations & creativity. There is so much to learn & observe everywhere.
Q: How does your travel experience and global inspirations help create products for hospitality?
A: travel exposes one to various cultures, traditions, trends & fashions & climates & environments. All of which influence design in a multitude of ways. I believe the more a designer or artist is exposed to & can learn from these through traveling our vast planet, the stronger & more creative & more versatile they become. A designer should be able to portray & interpret these influences so as to bring about harmony & balance in their creativity through pattern & color. I have also had a love & passion for hotels, even as a little girl being fascinated by resorts & hotels & their decor & color that enhanced the experience of travel & the beauty of different places around the world. Hospitality is a very exciting industry to be in!
Q: How does your design process work?
The key ingredients to my design process are my sketch book, camera & passport. I love to continually learning & to observe & to be inspired as much as I can. Sketching, Photographing & collecting along the way, I come back to my studio & after further research on current & future trends I then create a collection using both inspirations from recent travels & combine them into fashion forward creations & designs for the hospitality industry.