Fashion's premier pattern-meisters are bringing their signature style to our walls with a vibrant, contemporary and gloriously trippy range of wallpapers. The Fizz goes behind the scenes to find out what makes London duo Eley Kishimoto tick...
BY CLAIRE BINGHAM
What's on Eley Kishimoto's agenda at the moment?
We are ambassadors for the team developing London’s Centre Point, involved in the marketing and communication of the building and its surrounds. We have also recently collaborated with American lifestyle brand Fossil on a new watch and accessories collection. This is alongside a creative project – TEK – with agency New Future Graphic and Shoreditch-based tailor Timothy Everest. We craft the fabric, Timothy crafts the shirts and NFG crafts the packaging and visibility of the brand. It also means we now have a great wardrobe of shirts!
TOP: Mark Eley and Wakako Kishimoto, aka London label Eley Kishimoto
BELOW: Pop-tastic shirts from TEK
ABOVE: Well known for their graphic patterns and prints, Mark and Wakako have branched out into wallpaper. Their high-impact designs literally pop off the wall. From left: 'Vanity Cats' and 'Fishbone Borders'.
What do you love most about your new wallpaper collection?
It's brilliant that our work is made available for those who wish to live with our craft on their walls. It feels like a whole new area has opened up for us.
When coming up with these designs, where did you begin?
The wallpapers were chosen from our print archives, so it was a case of editing what we would like to see adorning our walls at home. Hand-printed at our studio in Brixton, Book 1 contains a range of 12 designs in three or more colourways. Patterns include Galaxy Bouquet, Vanity Cats, Camo Chevron, Sun Loving Bollards and La La Lyon. They are strong and colourful statements that we hope offer an alternative to what is currently out there in the market place.
What are your influences?
Our lives together, the people around us and the work to be done. We have worked together, every day, for the past 24 years and we still inspire, annoy, aggravate, support and love one another. The balance of our personalities and the practicality of our differing skill sets is unique to what we have created as Eley Kishimoto. We still feel that we have a great deal to do and being inspired to try and execute this together keeps us alive.
What’s the most extreme thing you’ve done in design?
To have been in the fashion industry as an independent company for over 20 years.
How would you sum up your style?
Light-hearted and unique, with integrity and sometimes a touch of humour.
What are your design constants?
We love the idea of making, so definitely craft. Self-sufficiency is always top of our agenda, working on projects with integrity that reward us by keeping the studio alive.
Is there one product that you really admire and wish you had designed?
Mark: I'd like to have created the corkscrew.
Wakako: If I see good design, I don't wish I'd designed it but appreciate it for what it is.
What’s the most memorable place you’ve visited?
Recently we went on a family trip to Koyasan, south of Osaka in Japan, which was a delight. We stayed in a monastery in the most amazing setting, surrounded by spirituality. The weather was beautiful too.
TOP ROW FROM LEFT: 'Camo Chevron', 'Fishbone Borders', 'Frills', 'Galaxy Bouquet'
BOTTOM ROW FROM LEFT: 'Monster Skin', 'Sun Loving Bollards', 'Vanity Cats', 'Venice'
What is your dream room?
The kitchen. It’s where everything is cooked up – and we're talking about more than just the delicious food generated in this room!
What social media do you use most?
Twitter and Instagram.
If you weren't a designer, what might you have been?
Wakako: A researcher into the food history of the world.
Mark: A fishmonger or a topiarist!
Portrait shots by Lucia O'Connor-McCarthy luciaomc.com