Meet the Maker: Susannah Dowse
I am Susannah Dowse, Founder of Dowse studio and shop in Brighton, where we create a range of art prints, jewellery and greeting cards.
My Design Life
I studied Critical Fine Art Practice at Brighton University. I went to work as a surface print and garment designer for various clients in the fashion industry. With a strong interest in sustainable design, I set up and ran a clothing label for a textile recycling charity and lectured in sustainable design at universities in the South East.
I established Dowse as a studio in 2013 and opened our shop in Brighton in 2014. Our studio shop is where we create and showcase our own range alongside the work of other likeminded designers and small brands designing and making in Europe.
I was inspired by what I learnt in the contrasting environments of the charity world and the fashion industry. I wanted the things I created to have a positive effect not only in its visual value but in how it's made. So this instilled a commitment to only manufacturing in the UK and working with likeminded independent businesses.
Part of this journey has been about finding products to make that can be made affordably and to high standards in the UK and adjusting what we create to reflect this.
My Design Style
There is often a strong graphic and geometric slant to my work. I enjoy the simplicity of geometric forms and I believe this leads to work that is clean and modern. Our jewellery is often worn by women who don't think of themselves as “jewellery kind of women” Which I find really interesting and quite inspiring when designing collections.
The art prints we create often reflect the same aesthetic and are designed for a modern, contemporary home, using bold geometric forms and graphic interpretations of “the great outdoors”.
My New Collection
We have only ever offered our jewellery at shows before and for the first time we're offering our range of contemporary art prints to a greater audience than just our Brighton shop audience.
‘Forms' our print collection is an extensive range of art prints created by myself and Lucy Sherston an illustrator who has recently started work with us. I love her Still Life prints. These are bold painterly still life compositions that complement our more geometric prints perfectly. The contrast of our two styles creates a lovely stylistic balance for the modern home.