Catswood Design Collection of fabrics was created to celebrate the joys of life in all its cheerful, ever moving, trod upon, and unexpected forms. These fabrics have been designed with several specific gardens in mind, the colours tried and tested, with each one meant to serve as the backdrop to life at home, meeting the demands of celebrations, dogs, cats, ducks, horses, teenagers, red wine and unexpected guests; all with a loosened simplicity that will bring joy to your everyday life.
I grew up in NYC and it was nothing short of a dream for me. I had almost anything I could ever ask for, that included two incredible parents. One thing they never failed to teach my sister and I was the love for beautiful things. Going to any sort of flea market was really watching them in their element for hours and hours. We on the other hand would verge to tears, begging for them to just pick something and go.
Miranda Brooks, my mother, was born and raised in England in a very strict household run by her stoic mother and nudist father. She spent her free time feeding her siblings various insects found around the garden and exercising her crisp stealing abilities. Her punishments included gardening, weeding, and cobbling. She quickly developed a green thumb and a love for the beauty of nature.
Bastien Halard, my father, was born and grew up in France, in an historical Botanical Garden, where he spent most of his time trying to break every bone in his body. On holiday , he would move to his grandparent’s farm in the countryside where he spent his time trying to avoid the erratic moods of his brilliantly creative grand-father who’s house was stuffed with an extraordinary amount of fabrics pined on all the walls.
Moving from the busy and creative city of New York to the rural countryside of Gloucestershire in 2019 was quite a shock. Our day-to-day problems quickly changed from worrying about where we parked the car, to worrying about the amount of mud that coated every inch of the house. My mother and father’s hobbies also seemed to change. My father spent about 99% of his day on his old tractor that broke down every five seconds, and planting little oaks that would only last about two days. My mother spent hours and hours in the garden weeding and planting deformed vegetables. Our first winter just happened to be the wettest winter England had ever seen, we were all completely miserable as were our animals. And then the Spring arrived, but also COVID, and subsequently the first lockdown. At first, we were terrified by the idea of being stuck in the countryside with our parents and forced to befriend slugs. This turned out to be a blessing. Between zoom meetings and online lessons, we would be running outside with our puppies and swimming in the pond with our baby ducks. There was a great deal of cleaning up to do as even the ducks intended to move into the house.
It is at this moment that the Castwoods project was born, and fabric became the center of dinner conversations. We couldn’t understand half of what they were talking about, but it was great to see them exited by something other than the tractor or the compost. Most of all, it was great to see them share their passion for beautiful things, nature and life in general. I’m happy that their outdoor fabric collection is finally completed and no matter how dirty our dogs, cats, horses, chickens and any ducks are, they can join us on the sofas.
Violette-Grey Halard, (14 years old)