Interview – Ellen Rosalie Designs

Ellen Rosalie Gunner believes household linens “not only serve their purpose, but also project a feeling of home and wellbeing”.

Currently studying Textiles at the Australian National University School of Art, Ellen uses marbling techniques to create organic patterns that are each one-of-a-kind. Her work also references her childhood and upbringing in Tennant Creek and Alice Springs, interpreting feelings of home, comfort and memory by combining the vibrant colours of Central Australia with the soft nature of textiles.

How did you become interested in working with textiles?

Well I actually never thought of textiles being a field I wanted to work in, since I didn’t even know how to sew. I originally had my heart set on becoming a furniture designer, until I purchased my very first set of Florence Broadhurst duvet covers. They were beautifully designed and amazingly soft, and I wanted to know more about what it takes to design bed linen like this. That was the moment I became interested in working with textiles, and where my dreams of becoming a home textiles designer began.

How has growing up in Central Australia influenced your work?

When I first moved to Canberra for uni, I experienced a great deal of home sickness, and felt that if loved ones back home in Alice Springs moved here to Canberra, it would all be okay. I guess when you move away from anywhere, you can’t help but reminisce on all the memories and moment you have and miss about that place. So I looked into the idea of how marbled patterns can relate to place. I started to marble vibrant colours to match my personal feelings and memories of Central Australia, to represent how it is home to me – the place where I feel most comfortable. I didn’t think my up bringing in Central Australia would influence my work this much, but I guess when you have lived somewhere for so long you can forget how beautiful it really is.


Tell us about marbling – what are some of the challenges involved?

There are so many challenges involved with marbling, that I am still learning about it haha. The biggest challenge I have encountered so far would be learning how to alum fabrics correctly, the do’s and don’ts when working with alum treated fabric and learning how much time marbled fabrics need to dry before heat setting. It its almost like a science experiment, there are so many different elements that can affect the process so you have to ensure you follow the instructions properly!

Where else do you find inspiration? Who are some of your favourite artists?

Ah, there are so many wonderful artists and designers I am inspired by! Florence Broadhurst is at the top of my list for her timeless repeat patterns and oriental designs, as well as Tiff Manuell for turning her groovy one off canvas paintings into wearables, Oh Mabel by Sarah Power for her bed linens inspired by memories, and Ellsworth Kelly for his use of chance within his artworks.


Do you have any upcoming events or projects you can tell us about?

Currently I have 3 projects I am working on this semester, which will all be exhibited at the end of the year. I have my marbled Fam-eo placemats, which I designed to keep family around the table for longer to re-discover that unconditional love and support that is there. Secondly I am working on a cushion collection called Gold Lush, that reflects how Alice Springs and Canberra are both home for me. And thirdly I am working on designing duvet covers, based around memories of home in Central Australia called Marbelous Home.

Where can we see more of your work?

If you would like to see more of my work and get your dose of marbling in your newsfeed, follow me on Instagram and Facebook!

Instagram: @ellenrosaliedesigns
Facebook: /ellenrosaliedesigns

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