Lana Launay is the ultra-talented creative behind her namesake earthy, considered and downright practical lamp shades. Crafted from natural textiles and recycled materials, they are sculptural and unique, using various weaving and stitching methods. Like Lana, we're heavily set in the lamp camp. Soak up some of her calm here.
What is your philosophy and overarching aim when it comes to creating?
I am guided by the thought that when I create something new, I aim to only use materials that are reclaimed or can biodegrade naturally. I feel I have that responsibility as a maker to not just add more to the masses, but to be resourceful and use as much as I can from what already exists.
In your wardrobe and your work, what colours, patterns and motifs are you most drawn to and why?
I have always been attracted to neutral tones and earthy colours; the warmth in reds, yellows and browns juxtaposed with olive and deep greens.
When it comes to pattern, I own some classic stripes but really it's texture and embroidery that hold a very strong presence. I love the attention to detail in contrast stitching, lattice panels and broderie anglaise so I am always drawn to vintage / vintage-inspired or a handmade garment.
My work definitely reflects my wardrobe and vice versa whether I am conscious of that or not!
What is your typical outfit for a day of making?
I have two different types of making, one I will refer to as my dirty work which involves any kind of metal repair, metal care / paint, wood care or coffee staining. For dirty work I usually wear an old tee or shirt, jeans or workwear pants, Blundstones or Gardana clogs and an old French artist's smock made by a pattern handed down from my grandmother to my mother to me.
When I am weaving or using textiles I'll wear comfortable, flexible, soft and loose. I try not to lock myself in one position for too long so comfort is key. This normally looks like a big soft button-down shirt, tank and shorts or leggings.
What does a normal day in your life look like?
Every day is different but an ideal day is waking up with the smell of black coffee which I then take back to bed and drink with my partner until my eyes are fully open.
Then I'll do some exercise (I rotate depending on my mood: mat pilates, yoga or a run) and finish with an ocean dip if the weather permits.
After emails I'll get started with dirty work to provide enough time for anything wet to dry and set before the end of the day.
Afternoons are for weaving and textile at home. This is my favourite part of the process because the repetition and tempo feels meditative and becomes a reflective time for me. I usually have music or a film playing in the background. It doesn't feel like work at all.
Then I'll wind down and switch off for dinner and wine with my partner, Linc. We take it in turns but he's a much better cook than I am.
Tell us about your studio. What is your interior aesthetic and how do you curate an inspiring space?
I work between my home and my mum's studio which she is very kind to let me use. Mum is a sculptor so her studio set up is perfect for me to utilise when I need to make a little mess.
My home aesthetic is somewhat eclectic but I keep it considered, especially for Linc who is more minimal than I am. I collect all sorts of decorative objects that are vintage sourced or handmade by friends. I'll collect from primitive to post-modern in design or form and any shape that will serve as inspiration when I need a boost.
Then there's alllll the lamps..... Most of our lamps are my shades on vintage bases and I am currently rotating 12 around the house trying to keep their presence justified. I much prefer the warm soft light from a lamp so darting around to switch them on and off every day has become a ritual.
Where do you find inspiration?
Inspiration comes in waves and it's rarely when I am actually in my work space. It will hit when I see an incredible film set, an old World Of Interiors reference or when I'm in the ocean. Most of the time it's really just a specific shape or colour combination that gets me excited to start making again.
On my Shades Instagram account, I try to only follow interesting people, spaces, galleries, interior design studios, artists or vintage sourcing pages to keep my creative mind stimulated and open.
Just to name a few..... @arsin_et_bieuville, @casaahorita, @the_london_list, @fang_tao_, @michaelbargo, @pangilai, @MnjaeKim, @garancevallee, @simoneyvetteleigh, @annakarinae, @shopmantel, @bruisesgallery, @spazioleone, @objet_la_ny, @interiorandfilms.
Can you give us your top three:
Self-care strategies -
Ocean swim for mental clarity
Taramasalata and capsicum with cracked pepper on crispbread (an old family favourite)
Cheese and pickles
Mandarins or watermelon, depending on the season
Down-time activities -
Boozy lunches with friends
Walking around galleries and antique stores
Laying in the sun and reading by the ocean
Are there any other up-and-coming artists we should keep an eye on?
Rojas Nunez, a Chilean painter from Arizona who now resides in Byron.
Tatsiana Shevarenkova of Cosset Ceramics, a Belarusian sculptor who now resides in Sydney.
Monique Robinson of Lockerroom, an Australian ceramicist who resides in Bellingen.
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