We at Cath Kidston agree wholeheartedly with Winnie the Pooh when he said: “It isn’t much good having anything exciting if you can’t share it with somebody.” So this month we are excited to announce the launch of a 26-piece collection, featuring one of Disney’s most beloved characters – along with his friends.
Here we speak to Senior Print Designer Emma Szenasi-Holland, who worked on the launch, about her role at Cath Kidston and inspirations behind our Winnie the Pooh print because “Sometimes the smallest things take the most room in your heart.”
When did you join Cath Kidston?
“Nine years ago, when I left university I started applying for loads of jobs in the design industry, I knew I wanted to do something in textiles or illustration. Then I saw an internship at Cath Kidston, I did a month’s internship and then was given the job of assistant – so that was my route in. It was really exciting and I was definitely lucky, because it is such a nice place to work and the print and product element is really fun.”
What does your role at Cath Kidston involve?
“I work on the bag and accessories team creating prints. I work closely with Christine Hafsten, who is the Design Director, as well as the rest of the print team. So my job involves lots of developments and also managing all the new projects and I really enjoy it; especially as we are so busy at the moment – I feel we are all really focused on moving Cath forward to a new modern look.”
How will this new modern look be realised?
“In terms of print it is really exciting because we are doing lots of new things. We are focussing on making each piece much more considered, so everything feels more premium – and the prints and colours are really standing out. I think we are becoming more modern and injecting a bit more energy into the product.”
Where did you study?
“I went to Brighton University to study Fine Art Print, which was really fun and it was there that I really got into print and realised how much I loved it. I was able to experiment on manual printing machines; I did lots of etching, mono printing and lithography [where an image is applied to a grained surface]. I always wanted to do fine art, but whilst there I was able to pick between fine art, fine art printing and fine art and sculpture – I went with print because that’s what I was most passionate about. And it grew and grew.”
Did you read the Winnie the Pooh books as a child?
“I loved Winnie the Pooh growing up, the quotes are so lovely. My favourite is the ‘love’ one, because it is just so great and such a nice message: Piglet: ‘How do you spell love?’ Pooh: ‘You don’t spell it you feel it.’ Also, I would say my favourite character was Tigger, because he’s the fun one.”
What was the inspiration behind the print?
“The two prints are actually re-launches, because we did Winnie The Pooh a few seasons back, which was a really small collection that did really well, so we are actually rerunning them on different products. The designer who created the prints read the classic vintage books and looked at old imagery, which were the lovely hand drawn illustrations. She also took on-board the positive messages within the story. Both prints are really fun and cute – for the Balloon Button Spot, we played with one of our classic spots and then within the story we have the balloon, which is really nice and uplifting – and colours are really fresh. I think both prints have a really happy feel. In the Repeat Tile print you see the little Piglets swinging on flowers, having a bit of fun. All the characters are all smiling, smelling the flowers – just having a great time.”
What was your involvement in the Winnie the Pooh launch?
“We have elevated the prints with a lovely new placement, which is when you take an element from the print and blow it up to go on a product – and I did these. So on these we have done a flower and a bee and there is a gold foil bringing a bit of luxe and fun to the collection.”
Do you have a favourite piece?
“I really do like the injection of the new placements on the little grab bag and the wallet, I think with the gold it looks so lovely and it’s got printed lining as well.”
We are bringing back some of our favourite characters in this limited edition Winnie the Pooh collection available from 22 August.
Shop the 26-piece collection, Disney x Cath Kidston collaboration online and in our Piccadilly Circus, London store from 22nd August. Sign up so you can be one of the first to shop the collection here and have a sneak peek of our top 10 items from the collaboration over on Pinterest.