We’ve probably all heard the name Laura Ashley — the fashion and homeware brand which became a massive household name brand in the eighties. Laura Ashley was the hot brand. Everyone wanted to see it and be seen with it. These were the items that you would save up for; to buy a “Laura Ashley” and show it off to your guests felt like the peak of decoration success.
Laura Ashley was a Welsh designer and businesswoman who first made her way into the homeware and fashion markets in the 1960s. Her first inspiration for her romantic, Victorian designs came from an exhibition of Women’s Institute handicrafts at the Victoria & Albert Museum. Initial runs of her designs started with headscarves, napkins, table mats, and tea towels, printed using a hand silk-screen machine designed by her husband.
In 1968, the first official Laura Ashley shop opened in Pelham Street, South Kensington and from that point on, the brand name truly took off in the London scene. Within a week of London’s Fulham Road shop opening, 4,000 dresses had been sold. The sensation that was Laura Ashley was not just contained to London and the UK however, as, in the 1980s, the brand had expanded into homewares and had 220 stores throughout the world. The eccentric floral designs stunned and captivated the public, leading to the publication of the Laura Ashley Book of Home Decorating in 1983 to allow people to best capture the signature Laura Ashley ‘style’ in their homes.
Laura Ashley herself passed away in 1985 at 60 years old, but her designs and the spirit they carry with them continue on to this day.
Victoria Eggs is excited to announce that she has been asked to create a special design for Laura Ashley’s 70th Anniversary.
There wasn’t a time growing up when Victoria Eggs doesn’t remember herself being surrounded by the florals of Laura Ashley. From the kitchen wallpaper to the living room curtains to the floral lampshade in the bedroom, Victoria Eggs has looked up to and been inspired by the designs since a young age. Her mother would even make dresses out of the floral fabrics for her, bringing Laura Ashley with her wherever she went. Two of her designs have been heavily inspired by Laura Ashley designs: the Wildlife in Spring collection and Autumn Garden collection.
With her long history with Laura Ashley designs, Victoria is particularly excited to be working with a brand that she holds in such high esteem.
The design is inspired by the Laura Ashley Country Rose design. Where Laura Ashley’s design is drawn in a painterly style — the strokes reminiscent of gouache or even watercolour painting — Victoria’s Eggs has used her signature illustrative style to put her own spin on the classic design. All the details in Victoria's design have been imagined and drawn by Victoria herself and within the country rose design, one can find hidden London icons such as Tower Bridge, the Royal Guards, and double-decker buses as well as the Laura Ashley 70th Anniversary logo. The iconic Laura Ashley design has become a treasure hunt, interspersed with historic London icons. Look at the design yourself and see if you can spot them all!
The design is available on a tea towel, apron, and mug and is available for purchase in the USA via the Laura Ashley USA website.