Lulu Lytle, co-founder of Soane Britain, will be the keynote speaker at Flourish
Lulu Lytle is the co-founder of Soane Britain which she set up when she was just 25 years old and is a passionate advocate of British local craftsmanship and manufacturing. Lulu will be keynote speaker at Flourish, our professional development conference for makers and designers, imparting her career experience and advice. Soane Britain designs and makes furniture, upholstery, lighting, fabrics and wallpapers. All their products are made in Britain and they work closely with a network of craftsmen and women to ensure utmost quality. We catch up with Lulu ahead of Flourish, about her work, inspirations and best piece of professional advice.
Can you tell us briefly what you’ll be talking about at Flourish?
The opportunities for designers and makers to specialise and become the very best at what they do; the need to balance consolidation of your business and innovation and the importance of constant dialogue with clients.
How important do you think it is for makers to connect with other makers and creative professionals?
It is more important for some than others. I really value conversations with designers and makers and find these conversations an invaluable stimulus to my creativity. However some designer makers work very well in a more isolated fashion.
Can you give us one piece of professional advice?
It sounds incredibly corny but I would have to say that maintaining integrity and staying true to your principles.
What are you working on right now?
Rattan apprenticeships and a book about the history of rattan furniture. Also, sustainable alternatives to marble and stone. And the possibility of establishing a commercial contract for the woodworking workshop in a Midlands prison to part-manufacture some lighting designs, training offenders in rattan weaving and therefore providing opportunities for work in prison or locally on release.
What are your inspirations?
Whilst I am inspired by anything and everything from ancient civilisations to nature to architecture, it is people who inspire me above all else.
What’s your favourite part of your work at Soane?
Collaborations; be it with craftsmen, colleagues or clients. We are currently collaborating with three different artists for future textile collections which has been extremely invigorating!