Meet Sophie Dunster of Gung-Ho
Sophie Dunster is an emerging designer, who we’ve teamed up with to bring you those quirky bee cushions found scattered around Charlton Hall.
Here, we introduce you to the founder of Gung-Ho – Sophie Dunster
We asked SOPHIE:
1. What are your greatest influences as a designer?
Current issues probably – I think it is so important that design communicates whats going on in the world. Of course, first and foremost, it has to be beautiful, but people have a lot to say and it’s nice when the things that surround you reflect that.
2. Who is your favourite icon and how have they inspired you?
I love Vivienne Westwood’s attitude to life, I even had the token orange hair for a bit too!
3. What is the most challenging project you have worked on?
Ooo, good question! One time I did a wallpaper which had 62 different foiled cut-outs per meter. I think I drove myself slightly mad doing it, but it was definitely a labour of love and I was so pleased with the outcome.
4. How did you get where you are today?
My dad is a zero-carbon architect, so growing up living that way, as well as being surrounded by people that had their own businesses, pushed me to stand for what I thought was important. That and having a good support team!
5. Where is your favourite place to be in the world?
I live on a boat in London and we have a community garden on the pier. In the summertime there is nowhere else I’d rather be, it’s a direct mix of being totally relaxed with the sense of space and a glass of Pimms!
6. Do you wear your own designs?
Pretty much 100% of the time – it gets to the point when people find out what you do, the next question is always “Oh and is this yours..?”. I am really bad at lying so I’ve made it easy; plus it is always good to rep what you do!
7. What’s the favourite piece of work you’ve done?
I really enjoyed working on the new collection, Plastic Oceans, which launches in May. It’s nice to work on something close to home – living on the boat we see an endless flow of plastic so it’s certainly a cause close to my heart!
8. How did it feel to have your work commissioned for Charlton Hall?
It was really exciting to create something for such a beautiful venue, as it was actually our first step into interiors, it was a lot of fun applying the designs in a different context! Our cushions launch in May!
9. What was the idea behind your bee cushions?
The cushion designs are from the same collection as our British Insects cause against pesticide and chemical use. They showcase the insects behind all the pollination that keeps the world ticking. With every purchase we donate back to a charity that campaigns against pesticide laws as well as educating people on how to help them on a day to day basis.
10. Charlton Hall is full of eclectic and off the wall designs, what do you think of the interiors?
I LOVE IT. It’s a skill to mix fun design and still stay classy – which of course is exactly what people are looking for when booking a venue!
11. As a featured designer, what would you say to anyone looking at Charlton Hall as a potential wedding or events venue?
I would say places like this are hard to find, bag it!
Gung Ho’s new collection, Plastic Oceans, is available now via their website www.gung-ho-design.com