Recently, popular NZ illustrator Greg Straight and his wife Hannah joined forces on a new print brand – Duett Design – and dayymmm is the Scandi-geometric Duett aesthetic proving popular!
Hannah and Greg discuss ideas in their regular Monday meeting – at a fave neighbourhood cafe
We already know lots about your husband Greg Straight (being one of our fave endemicworld illustrators and someone who’s been with us since we started). But tell us a bit more about you, Hannah – and how you came to join forces as Duett Design?
I’m probably Greg’s biggest fan. What a talented guy! I’m also a real interior design enthusiast and have wanted to collaborate with him for a few years now, using him as a kind of medium to get my ideas down on paper. My own graphic design skills are very basic but I have a good eye for design and can spot a trend a mile away, so together we make a great team.
We didn’t really start Duett very intentionally. It all began because I wanted some custom artwork to fit with our living room décor. We started playing around with some geometrics and came up with our Deco Gold print and Mint Maze print, this was the humble beginning, but we showed them to a few people and they all seemed to really love them so we spent a few more long evenings sitting together at Greg’s desk building up a collection. The ideas just seemed to flow, I’d be researching colours, shapes and texture and Greg would interpret my ideas. Sometimes, they would end up quite different from my original concept but I loved that it was a real combined effort. Before we knew it we had an online shop and were getting great support from bloggers and retailers (Endemicworld being the first) so the momentum had built up enough to keep this baby going.
Tell us about a few creatives/designer you are personally inspired by?
For art, I’m a big fan of Inaluxe’s abstract shapes, composition, colour and texture.
I also love furniture designer Tim Webber for the clean lines and simplicity of his pieces.
There are heaps of interior designers and stylists that I get inspired by every day on Instagram. If I named them all it would be a very long list but I’m going to give a special mention to two… Emma Flint from Raw Styling – I wish I had her talents in the product styling department, I think I’d sell a lot more prints. To me it’s just perfection. And of course Michelle Halford (The Design Chaser), her photos are always beautiful and rekindle my love for Scandinavian design each and every time.
What are some of the fave things you have on your own walls at home?
- Our Greg Straight ‘Tikitastic’ screen print – an all time classic, we hung onto the last one in the edition.
- Our three custom Duett prints in natural frames
- Ikea picture ledges, I love to change up how prints are displayed from time to time and these make it so easy!
- Drawings by our son Leo (this boy has his Dad’s skills)
- A photo of our daughter Chloe, when she was about 2 years old
- Our wedding photo – we only have one on our walls but it’s a goodie.
- My round Tim Webber etched edge mirror
Super on-trend and fun decor at Hannah’s workstation
What’s coming up for Duett?
We’ll soon be revealing our new direction for spring/summer. Our minimal, scandi-style prints have been really popular and are reflective of one of my favourite interior styles, but we are not afraid of a bit of colour, especially in the sunnier months. I’ve been really inspired by some beautiful watercolour art lately so we are bringing a touch of that into our new range whilst still remaining true to our geometric foundations.
Exciting little sneak-peek at a few ‘coming soon’ styles from Duett Design!
What would be a dream collab/project you’d love to do?
I think our designs would lend themselves perfectly to homeware. I can see some of them working well as rugs, cushions, throws, blankets, duvet covers, pillowcases etc. So yeah, if Freedom wanted to hook up, that would be kind of cool! But seriously, something along those lines, an in-house range with a credible brand such as Citta Design would be amazing.
Hannah and Greg spend Monday mornings working (and being caffeinated) at their favourite local, Manna Cafe
Designers always give the best recommendations – Tell us about a good movie to see, a book to read, a website to check out, a place to visit…
This is a tough question for me! We’re a bit behind the eight ball on TV & movies as we often work in the evenings after the kids go to bed (for example we’ve only just started watching Suits on Netflix).
A website I’m enjoying these days is the Australian version of Houzz www.houzz.com.au (which also covers NZ). It’s a bit like a never, ending copy of Your Home & Garden. The photos are nice and big; there is a good mix of stories covering interiors and architecture as well as a bundle of useful articles full of advice and tips.
There’s also a great new little café in our hood called Manna Coffee & Bread Store (Birkenhead). The décor is scandi-cool (with sidekick stools from Paper Plane), the owner-barrister knows his coffee and the menu is tasty and healthy with many sweet-tasting-but-sugar-free options, I’d really recommend a visit, its been very well thought out. Maybe we’ll catch you there as we’ve chosen it as our ‘Monday morning meeting’ venue where we plan out what needs to be done in the week ahead for Duett Design, Greg Straight Art and another little venture we’ve started working on.
For lovers of Scandi-monochrome, Hannah and Greg have designed a range of black and white art prints.