Little Brown Dog Workshop, Rebecca Lewis
The little bespectacled lady of Little Brown Dog Workshop with her dangling teapot earrings caught my eye on the bright sunny corner spot of the outdoor show grounds fluffing out her vintage fabric cushions. Under her marquee, a rustic wooden hand-painted sign tells me I’ve stumbled into LITTLE BROWN DOG WORKSHOP, perhaps a most unlikely place on a day at the markets to chance upon a real cosy living room.
Complete with wooden-armed vintage chairs, bright polka-dotted floor rug and printed vintage fabric sacks of potted plants, I had the sudden urge to plonk myself down for an afternoon nap. But instead we (the lady with the cutest handmade teapot earrings) struck up a conversation. Creator Rebecca Lewis (also Bec), one of the co-founders of the charming Little Brown Dog Workshop, is a chirpy, vibrantly creative and talented mum of two who draws and sews like she breathes.
Where Little Brown Dog Workshop Gets Its Inspiration
She tells me her craft of print-making and up-cycling has always been inspired by her love of everything vintage and her hometown of Ipswich, Queensland. Not only does Bec live there, she also works at the Ipswich Art Gallery where she’s surrounded daily by so much artistic inspiration. She’s gleeful to have recently set up their new studio in Ipswich where each piece of her up-cycled fabrics are painstakingly hand screen-printed and sewn into retro-looking cushions and retro furniture upholstery.
It’s no wonder that her design philosophy incorporates up-cycling and sustainable manufacturing processes as Rebecca studied environmental management from UQ (University of Queensland). She insists only on water-based inks for her screen-printing designs and her signature pieces are made using pre-owned fabrics, salvaged timbers and furniture and 100% recycled PET bottle cushion inserts.
The Launch of ‘windowsill’ range:indoor plants, terrariums and kokedama
Bec is proud to launch their first fabric design collection at the Finders Keepers Market, a range her business partner Lois Kilmartin and her have named ‘windowsill’: featuring indoor plants, terrariums and kokedama. Each design starts its life as tiny lino prints Bec makes using carved lino blocks which are then individually screen-printed by hand and assembled cohesively into different unique graphic designs sewn into cushions or upholstery for vintage chairs. Some of her new range to look forward to will feature quirky ‘small change’ featuring Australian coins and ‘munted peaches’ featuring a selection of kooky-looking ‘ugly’ fruit and vege.
At her stall were also adorable little screen-printed fabric pennants that come ready-to-hang from wooden dowels, and rad-looking circular polka-dot terrarium cushions. Bec also undertakes many projects in up-cycling and documents them on social media. To get updates on Little Brown Dog Workshop, follow Bec on her making and up-cycle adventures on her Instagram feed.
Bec and Lois also have an Etsy store, littlebrowndoggy