Irish Designer Debbie Millington Launches Silk Scarves Collection 

Well it’s all very exciting to be launching my new Irish Designer brand Debbie Millington Designs and to be writing my very first blog post. I am not sure where to begin, but I suppose if you have made your way to reading my Blog, then you love the silk scarf collection and want to find out a little bit more about me and whats behind my design process. What makes me tick!!

Each design is inspired by a different personal travel photograph that I have taken while touring around the world. I combine these ideas with drawings and sketches from my travel diaries to formulate my designs into print repeats.

World travel has been an enormous part of my life and I get excited by all the wonderful traditional and cultural things to see and experience. I love being able to witness first hand a local parade or ceremonial gathering and seeing the abundance and diversity of their ethnic  costume and dress. I adore learning about different types of traditional art and craft, woven textiles, ceramics, painting and print.

I have always been drawn to the vibrant colours and intricate elaborate patterns of traditional costume. I myself have a collection of all kinds of pieces that I have collected while travelling - gourds, leather work, bags, rugs, throws, jewellery, head pieces, bridal saris, kimonos. The list goes on….

So I suppose for my first post I will introduce a silk scarf design I have named “Henna Hands”. Inspired by my travels through Rajasthan in India.

Intricate with vibrant jewel coloured repeat design on silk

Intricate with vibrant jewel coloured repeat design on silk

Henna is something I loved to have painted on my hands if I found a credible artist to design one for me. A wonderful form of  painting or staining of skin (like temporary body art) using a paste made from dried henna leaves. Usually performed for social or holiday ceremonies, often depicting floral and foliate patterns. Indian women preparing to meet a husband or typically brides on their wedding day, would wear the henna, which symbolises fertility, joy and beauty. 

The pattern on this particular 'Henna Hands' scarf,  is the pattern of the henna design from my hands retraced and repeated to create this wonderfully intricate pattern. I have then added vibrant jewel colours inspired by precious gemstones, ruby red, pink amethyst, blue sapphires. Bright colours are often privileged to the younger women in India-ruby red for a recent bride, yellow following the birth of a child, black and blue often are seen as unlucky colours, white is the colour of purity. 

Indians are passionate about appearance and the Indian ceremonies in general are a feast for the inquisitive eye. The intricate lattice design of the Henna scarf also is reminiscent of the jewellery women wear in India. Jewellery is another form of adornment that portrays fertility, prosperity, wealth and marital status . 

Women are often adorned with bracelets, necklaces and pendants dripping in semi precious stones.The imagination for their finery is limitless. Women tinkle with the sound of bracelets and bangles as they breeze by you on the street with they fine delicate jewels and brightly coloured saris.

Women are apparelled like goddesses. Their forearms laden with a multitude of glass, bronze and enamel bracelets, ankles weighted with heavy silver bands, noses and toes with rings. Everything to attract a mans gaze. Like female birds do to attract the male.

So this wonderful Henna Hands Scarf in silk satin is a truly wonderful design of colour and pattern. And behind it a feast of interesting inspiration .

I hope you enjoy it too.