March 05, 2009
designer melanie hayes
While I do gravitate towards colours in interiors, other times I crave the serenity of linens and neutral palettes. Memi Designs, another great find from the recent homewares fairs, is doing just that. The talent behind the business is Melbourne-based Melanie Hayes, who screen prints homewares and gift products by hand.
Which five words best describe you? Busy, well-intentioned, sensitive, absent-minded, creative.
What was your first job and what path have you taken since then? Wrapping soap and making incense for my aunty's business. From there to waitressing and working in a kitchen while trying to do my artwork on the side, from there to freelance graphic design and illustration, to now, running my own business!
What’s your proudest achievement? Being able to support myself doing something I love.
Who inspires you? Parts of lots of people. One of my life lesson has been not putting anyone on a pedestal.
What are you passionate about? People treating each other with respect and being humane. I can't stand it when people are motivated by egoism and greed.
What’s the best lesson you’ve learnt? You have to work with what feels right in life. When I tried to force myself to do things I thought I should, it never worked. I guess it's about following what you feel inspired and motivated to do. And sometimes you need a bit of trial and error to work this out!
Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? Clarice Beckett, a profilic Australian painter who died young and was not really recognised in her lifetime. She used to go out painting in storms and bad weather because she was inspired by the effects on light and tone. I think she died from pneumonia after a painting trip. So she literally died for her art. And a lot of her paintings rotted away in an open shed in a paddock before someone took an interest in her - tragic.
What’s next? Move into a new studio and get sewing - orders to fill!
What are you reading? The Lost Dog by Michelle De Kretser.
Images courtesy of Memi Designs