I couldn’t help smiling when I came across the wonderfully intricate, yet fun and playful illustrations of Flapper Doodle recently whilst browsing on Etsy. Kate Gabrielle’s range of stationery and jewellery harks back to the 1920’s yet has a moderness about them that is engaging.
Iced Vovo got in touch with Kate to find out more:
Q1: When and/or how did you first get interested in illustrating?
A: I’ve been obsessed with drawing since I got my first box of crayons.. it’s just something that I never grew out of! 🙂
Q2: I read where Flapper Doodle was started when you first uploaded a quick little doodle of Flappers on a bike, to flickr. How did the focus on Flappers come about?
A: I love classic films and bygone eras, so my drawings always tend to gravitate towards the vintage. I used to doodle these characters on napkins and diner placemats… they were doodles of flappers. Flapper Doodles!
Q3: You predominantly work with pen and ink, what do you like about this medium?
A: I like that it’s portable and not too messy. You can’t really paint in bed or on the beach, but you can draw with pen and ink! I can take my supplies with me wherever I go and draw when the mood strikes.
Q4: I love the simplicity yet intricacy in a lot of your illustrations – is it the pen and ink that best allows you to achieve this result?
A: Thank you! I think so. It’s a lot easier to make delicate line work with a pen than a paintbrush (I also paint, and I definitely prefer drawing fine lines in pen and ink!)
Q5: Did you originally just start with drawings and then decide to use them for other items such as jewellery?
A: Originally I only sold drawings and prints, but then a customer asked if I could make my best friend art prints into necklaces. I liked how hers turned out so much that I ended up keeping them on as a regular item.
Q6: A favourite of mine is your range of Audrey Hepburn note cards. How did this range come about?
A: Thank you! Audrey Hepburn got me started on classic films (How to Steal a Million was the first one I ever watched, then I watched all of the other films of hers that Blockbuster had available over the course of one week!) and to this day I still love her movies. She had such iconic outfits in so many of her films, I just had to draw them!
Q7: The Best Friend range is delightful and I love that you have a “customization” option where people can choose from a range of hairstyles, hair colour and skin colour – is this one of the most popular items? If not, what would be the most popular item in your range?
A: Thanks! That is definitely the most popular item. I’m actually not sure I’d be a full-time Etsy seller if I didn’t have those in my shop since they make up such a huge percentage of my sales! I’m constantly trying to think of something new that will equal or top their popularity but so far nothing has.
Q8: How did the range of Wedding Stationery come about?
A: Same as the jewelry, actually! One of my customers asked if I could make her a custom bridesmaid invitation, and I ended up listing them in the shop afterwards. That was back in 2010, I think, and the design has evolved a lot since then. The first one had one single bride in the middle and wasn’t customizable, now they feature the bridesmaids and each girl can be personalized to look like the real life bridesmaid!
Q9: What new items are you hoping to add to your range of products?
A: Right now I’m actually already working on my 2014 calendar and 2013 Christmas cards! I’m also going on a cross-country road trip later this month and I’m planning on releasing a new drawing in each state I visit that represents something from the state. I think it’ll be such a fun series!
Q10: I read where you are currently trying out a more “Gorey-esque style”. Can you explain a little more about this?’
A: My original drawings were all very simple and slightly cartoon-like, but I wanted to branch out into something more detailed. My new work is “Gorey-esque” in the sense that it has intricate black and white line work and hatching like one of my favorite artists, Edward Gorey. I’m always blown away by the intricacy of his work and what he could create with pen and ink. He’s a huge inspiration to me!
Well I can’t wait to see how these “Gorey-esque” illustrations and the Road-trip ones turn out and I’ll be sure to feature them on Iced Vovo sometime soon! To look at the range of Flapper Doodle items follow the link to Kate’s Etsy Store or find the link on the Fab Finds Page.