01 April 2019

Orla Kiely exhibition

I’ve been looking forward to the Orla Kiely exhibition since I first heard it was coming to Dovecot Studios in Edinburgh. I’ve always liked the retro style of her designs, and all the exhibitions I’ve been to at that venue have been really well put together. 
I loved seeing how many different patterns she has created, and the clean graphic style of them. I enjoyed learning about how her colour palette was inspired by the 60s and 70s, in particular the olive green Formica of the family kitchen. That got me to thinking of my own childhood, and the very same colours had appeared, e.g. in the Tupperware we used in the caravan, along with similar simple but bold patterns and designs. 

Seeing all the handbags together looked really striking, as did the massive hanging dresses. I wished that there had been someone walking beside them when I was there, so I could have taken a photo to show the scale of them. In fact, as I was walking up the street afterwards I did a double-take when I passed someone wearing an Orla Kiely dress and bag, and I was tempted to follow her into the exhibition to take her photo!
My very favourite part of the exhibition was a little corner of a sketchbook in a glass cabinet, where I could see the development of some of her ideas.

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