Artist and print designer Leanne Claxton grew up in Lancashire, moving to London in 2002 to complete a BA degree in textile design at Central Saint Martins. In 2005, she trained in Paris under Christian Lacroix where she discovered haute couture and the relationship between art and fashion. Since graduating, she has worked both in-house and as a freelance print designer for major brands in London, Paris, New York, Hong Kong and Spain. Leanne Claxton began printing her floral oil paintings onto luxury scarves as a way of making her artwork more accessible. Uniting art and fashion as one, the artist embraces the concept of wrapping the body in vibrant, painted brush strokes.
The Leanne Claxton digital luxury scarf collection sees the artist’s dramatic oil paintings digitally transformed and printed to the highest possible quality and finish onto the finest silk and cashmere fabrics. Each scarf starts life as a detailed graphite sketch which is then interpreted into an oil painting and screen print.
Claxton Bespoke luxury scarves are hand-made in England. Each scarf is individually painted, treated, washed and hand finished. Bespoke scarves are a labour of love, and their individual marks and quirks ensure no two pieces are the same. This is a quintessential part of Claxton’s truly unique brand.
Leanne Claxton is an artist with a passion for the outdoors, delighting in natural light, alfresco painting and the rainbow of colours and intricate details that nature offers. The paintings and accessories she creates are inspired by these elements at home and on her travels.
Here, Leanne talks to us at House of Coco and tells us more…
When did you launch the brand and what was the reason behind it?
I launched my brand at London Fashion Week in February 2015.
The reason I launched my brand was because I wanted to make my artwork more accessible. I believe that art is for everyone so I simply want to share my artwork. Applying my artwork onto products makes it more accessible to everybody. Not many people can afford to buy my original oil paintings but I believe there is a product that is affordable for everyone on my website.
I love to make real brush strokes come to life on products; I find it very exciting.
Whats your background?
I grew up in Lancashire, I have always been a fine artist, I studied two fine art A-Levels and a Foundtaion Dipolma (specialising in painting) before applying to University. I moved to London in 2002 to complete a BA degree in textile design at Central Saint Martins. In 2005, I trained in Paris under Christian Lacroix where I discovered haute couture and the relationship between art and fashion. Since graduating, I have worked both in-house and as a freelance print designer for major brands in London, Paris, New York, Hong Kong and Spain before setting up my own brand.
How many people are involved in the company and what are their roles?
At the moment I do everything with regular help from interns and my parents help out where they can!
If you could start over with the business, would you do anything differently?
I think if I had done a course in business studies before setting up my business it would have helped me overcome certain hurdles I have had to face in terms of business.
What is the hardest challenge you have faced since you started the company?
The admin side of the business has been the hardest challenge.
Tell us one fact about you that people wouldn’t know?
I love to go running and swimming to help me focus on my design ideas. I find it relaxing and a way to keep stress levels under control during the busy times.
2017 is here, where do you plan on taking the brand?
I am collaborating with K11 in Hong Kong and China to launch my artwork on more products that I don’t currently have on my online store.
To date, what has been the highlight since launching?
Having the opportunity to exhibit at London Fashion Week alongside many inspirational brands.
Which city do you feel most at home in, London, Paris or New York?
Definitely London, I guess because I am English so England will always be home for me. However, I do feel at home in Paris because I did live there in the past. New York I also feel very comfortable in and I would happily live there again too!
Three beauty products you can’t leave the house without?
My Elizabeth Arden 8 hour cream, YSL touche éclat highlighter pen and mascara – my two gold sticks! haha
Being true to yourself.
Best thing about London to you?
The art galleries.
If you had to, what piece of clothing from your wardrobe would you wear everyday?
I would wear everyday my vintage dress given to me from my Nan.
Favourite love song?
Beyonce and Jay Z ‘Crazy in Love’
Best place for a coffee?
A place in Hong Kong called Elephant Grounds.
Most memorable piece of advice given to you?
‘You will always paint because you are a painter, it doesn’t matter whether you do a fine art degree or fashion degree because you will always paint’ – that advice was given to me by my foundation diploma tutor and fellow artist Ian Murphy. I never forget it… and he was right I did always paint even though my degree was textiles.
If you could spent 24 hours in anywhere in the world, where would it be?
On a sunny beach somewhere that has good waves to surf with all my family.
In future, how do you plan on expanding the company?
I plan on applying my paintings onto more products.
Find out more…
@leanneclaxton on Instagram