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Everything Begins

Designer Spotlight - Bay & Fyfe

Posted on February 22, 2013 by Amy There have been 0 comments

Everything Begins somewhere.  Tell us a bit about your background – what path led you to what you are doing now?
My background is in International Marketing. Whilst that’s not an obvious path to setting up  a creative concept label collaborating with artists, I’ve always been a budding creative at heart with side projects always on the go. I’ve got a scarp book full of ideas and inspiration.

Bay and Fyfe Founder Frith Hucks Bay & Fyfe Founder and Creative Director, Frith Hucks.

Your first three scarf collections have been created through a collaboration with ex-Sneaky Sound System frontman turned artist, Daimon Downey.  How did this come about?
It was a chance meeting. Daimon was having his first solo exhibition just up the road from my flat. I was new to Sydney, so making an effort to check out my new hood and I popped in. I left $2,000 poorer with a stunning painting and the nugget of an idea. I was drawn to Daimon’s use of off beat colour and mixed media. Over Christmas I read a book about one of my favourite New Zealand artists, Dick Frizzell and in the final chapters it talked about how he was taking his art into other areas. Before I knew it, I’d conjured up a host of evolutionary projects for Daimon’s art – scarves being one of them. Luckily for me, when I told him what I was thinking, he didn’t tell me to ‘take a flying leap’.


Your debut scarf collections are absolutely amazing and the collections are just getting stronger and stronger.   Talk us through your design process including the inspiration behind the pieces and colour used.

Thank you, that’s very kind. This next small collection is definitely our best. We’ve gone against the digital print trend and we screen print our scarves. This is a much harder process to perfect and it took a while to find the company to do it. Now we have, the results are spectacular.

Bay and Fyfe | Designer Silk Scarf | Puffer Fish 'Puffer Fish', one of three new silk scarves in Bay & Fyfe's latest collection - a collaboration with Australian Artist, Daimon Downey.

It also took a while to work out the right process to re-create Daimon’s paintings into a digital file in preparation for screen printing. We had to find a way to create the brush strokes and paint blemishes over the top of the animal which is actually a digital image. After 18 months of experimenting, I think we’ve got it right.

Colours – well that’s a bit of self indulgence really. I collect colours from anywhere – nail polishes, clothes, magazines, pantone books – and put a palette together. Daimon will then come along with his paint cans (I kid you not) and swatches and we’ll play around with what works. He’s a wizard with colour, so I enjoy this a lot. We may have to sample a couple of colour ways if we’re not sure, but normally 5 out of 6 picks are right.

Bay and Fyfe Flamingo Silk Scarf "Flamingo", another of the three latest silk scarves from creative concept label, Bay & Fyfe. Right on Trend.

What challenges have you faced since starting out as a designer and on the flip side your biggest triumph?

Getting our creations produced to the standard we want has been a real challenge. I describe our scarves as ‘Hermes meets Dame Vivienne Westwood’s so the bar is set pretty high. There are been some huge challenges with printing and finishing, but we’ve found the right studio workshop now that does incredible screen printing and all our finishing is done in Australia.

Bay and Fyfe Silk Scarf Snake 'Snake', the third scarf in the latest collection from Bay & Fyfe.

In regards to triumphs  I think a highlight has been seeing one of our scarves in an editorial in the Wall Street Journal magazine. Another highlight would be showing a prestigious trade show, Tranoi, in Paris this year.

Bay and Fyfe Silk Scarves featured in Wall Street Journal Bay & Fyfe Horse Zebra Scarf gracing the pages of The Wall Street Journal - no 5.

How would you describe your work & what would you say is the most special thing about your work?
I’d describe our work as ‘creative luxury’. We’ve taken work from a very talented Australian artist – Daimon Downey – and turned it in to wearable art that oozes timeless style and luxury.

What are you most proud of in your work?
I think the way the elements have all come together – the silk that took me 7 months to find, the detail of our screen printing and the beautiful depth of colour that each scarf has. It sets us apart. People have been known to get goose bumps when they see our scarves – that’s pretty special.

Bay and Fyfe | Bay and Fyfe Silk Scarves | Collection One Bay & Fyfe Silk Scarves, Pastel Zoo Collection One.

What does a typical day at work look like? 
That’s what I love – there is no typical day for me. Every day is different.

What would be your dream creative project or collaboration?
I’d love to do a collaboration with Dame Vivienne Westwood herself. I love her quirky creativity.

If you weren’t a designer what would you do?
I’d buy and renovate houses. It’s still on my lists of things to do, but requires some substantial funds to pull off. One day….

Where do you go for inspiration?
Instagram is a creative persons dream. I regularly get ideas from other people’s pictures

What are your favourite reads, both magazines & blogs?
I always read Belle and InSide Out magazine. They are great for inspiration and new finds to explore more. Inside Out has a great blog too. I regularly check out the Interiors Addict blog because there’s always interesting interviews and news of the interiors world.

Bay and Fyfe Off the Mantel Wool Scarf Bay & Fyfe Off the Mantel Wool Scarf as seen in Belle Magazine. Nothing like a jaunty little scarf to casually drape around one's shoulders! Also available in two additional colourways, Cream & Orange and Pink / Purple

Bay and Fyfe Wool Scarves Bay and Fyfe Wool Scarves as seen in Belle Magazine - three colourways, Blue & Teal, Orange & Cream and Purple & Pink.

What are you listening to right now?
I’ve been enjoying Florence and the Machine at the moment. And I really love the song on the teaser for Downton Abby…but I need to Shazam it because I don’t who it’s by.

What books would we find on your bedside table?
‘The Looniness of the Long Distance Runner’. I read it before I ran the New York marathon a few years ago, but I need to reboot my running, so I’m reading it to re-inspire myself.

What art would we find in your home?
You’d find pieces I’ve collected from all the different places in the world I’ve lived. I’m particularly attached to my Piet Hein Eek dining room chairs my Daimon Downey painting.

What does a perfect day off look like?
A nice long walk on the beach and a swim.

Tell us your ideal travel destination.  Both for a holiday and adventure.
I like holidaying in Europe. The Italian lakes are a favourite in the summer and Austria in the winter for skiing. My favourite adventure countries would be Peru and Bolivia because I love really un-spoilt, remote places to explore.

What/were was the last amazing meal you ate?
Dehesa in London a few weeks ago. Amazing tapas.

Most treasured possession?
My Bay & Fyfe scarf collection. It’s got my heart and soul in it.

Bay and Fyfe Daimon Downey Zebra Limited Edition Art 'Zebra', the Daimon Downey piece that was the catalyst for the Bay & Fyfe label.

Where would we find you on a Saturday?  Doing what?
Coffee, paper, mooching, swimming

Sydney’s best kept secret?
Bird & Bear café on the water in Elizabeth Bay.

And finally, let us in on a little secret?
Once upon a time I wanted to be a milliner.

Buy Bay and Fyfe Silk Scarves online. Click here to view and buy Bay & Fyfe's scarf collection online.

This post was posted in Accessories, Designer Interviews and was tagged with Affordable Art, Bay & Fyfe, Daimon Downey, Designer Silk Scarves, Designer Textiles, Everything Begins, Hard to Find Gifts, Luxury Gifts, Luxury Silk Scarves, Off The Mantel, Pastel Zoo, Silk Scarves, Unique Gifts