Fiona Plews is the designer behind Plewsy, an illustrated stationery and homeware brand. She takes inspiration from her Yorkshire roots and by absorbing snippets of conversation.
Her cards, notebooks and giftwrap are all produced in Britain on eco-friendly paper and are available from galleries, gift shops, Not on the High Street, Etsy and Folksy. She also uses her talents to create branding for small businesses.
Fiona is married to James and has a cockapoo puppy, Noddy. They live in a village near Northallerton. www.plewsy.com
Question: Yorkshire is a hot bed of design and artistic talent. Do you have any favourite designer makers?
Answer: There is so much talent in Yorkshire, it’s difficult to choose. I came across Ruth Pullan’s leather bags at Crafted by Hand in Masham a couple of years ago. They are just lovely. Jessica Sherriff of Jessica Jewellery Design is another talented lady. Her acrylic jewellery is so unique and often inspired by Yorkshire.
Question: Name the parts of Yorkshire you love best and tell us why?
Answer: One of my favourite parts of West Yorkshire is Saltaire. Until a few years ago I’d never been, but now, each time we visit our friends, we stumble across another little quirky cafe or gift shop. It is also home to one of my lovely stockists: Salts Mill.
Question: Which Yorkshire shops do you like to buy from and why?
Answer: I love to support independents and small businesses wherever I can. Foodie wise we try to shop locally with veg from Riverford Organics and other supplies from Bedale. One of my favourite gift shops has to be RAD Studio in Saltaire.
Question: Where are your favourite cafes, pubs and restaurants?
Answer: Ahh where to start, I’m a right foodie. The Coore Arms, Scruton.;Fannys, Saltaire; Hoxton North, Harrogate; Bean and Bud, Harrogate; The Carpenters Arms, Felixkirk; Mrs Atha’s, Leeds and Your Bike Shed, York.
Question: Where do you take inspiration from the county when designing?
Answer: Noddy gets me out and about, so the countryside does seem to be a constant feature in some my latest illustrations. It might just be as simple as the shapes of corn in a field that spark an idea, other times it’s catching a snippet of conversation while sat on a bench having a breather. More obviously, the Yorkshire lingo inspired my Yorkshire collection ,which feature cards, a fine bone china mug (our first homeware product) and our limited edition Le Tour screen print.
Question: If you had to choose just one day out in Yorkshire, where would it be and what would you do?
Answer: I think I’d jump on my bicycle. We’re pretty lucky to live in such beautiful countryside.
Question: Do you have a favourite Yorkshire walk?
Answer: We are always on the look out for Noddy friendly routes these days. I think walks around Askrigg are some of my favourite, but on a lovely summer day anywhere in the Yorkshire Dales would do me just fine.
Question: What’s the best thing about Yorkshire?
Answer: I think the spirit. Everyone seems super proud of their county and of their roots -something that definitely shone through when the Tour de France came to Yorkshire.