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Printed Cushion Covers


Jesse Breytenbach is a freelance illustrator and print maker working in Cape Town. She has created the funky textile, print and product label Henri Kuikens. Sourcing all her fabrics locally, her textiles are printed using water-based ink and cured to be permanent. HL has fallen in love with her printed cushion covers and were excited to ask Jesse about them…

‘My cushion covers are all printed on cotton or a cotton-hemp blend using water-based inks and hand carved lino blocks. Because the designs are printed with loose blocks, by hand, I can compose patterns while printing, or use the same combinations of blocks to create quite different patterns, so I'm continually coming up with new designs and colourways,’ she says. ‘I'm also able to print very small runs of each pattern, which means that I don't ever have to "retire" a pattern and can print to order easily.’

We at HL are always interested to know how designers come up with their designs and what inspires them most. We asked Jesse what incites her creativity. ‘Most of my designs are inspired by plants – even the more abstract ones – and some of my favourite designs are inspired by the medium itself. Sometimes I print a few blocks together just to see what they'd look like, then I move them around a bit, add another colour, and come up with a new design that way.’

Jesse continues, ‘I did a fine art degree in printmaking and always liked linocut for its immediacy. When I wanted to start printing fabric, it seemed like the simplest medium for experiments – it doesn't require a lot of equipment or space.’

Henri Kuikens prints, textiles, and sewn products are available from Jesse’s online shop (locally and internationally). The fabulous cushion covers retail at The Fringe Arts in Cape Town.

View her website at jessebreytenbach.co.za to order from her online shop or for the list of stockists. Visit The Fringe Arts at 99B Kloof Street, Gardens or the V&A Waterfront, Cape Town. Email Jesse on jezze@tiscali.co.za.