I love great design. I mean really, really love it. In an awkward, obsessive kind of way. Bad design stresses me out, but good design – good design makes me buy magazines & books I’ll never read. It makes me buy cards I’ll never send and wine I’ll never drink (just kidding, of course I’ll drink the wine). What I’m getting at is that – for me – beautiful, well thought out design, illustration and typography add value. I don’t ever regret the things I own for their aesthetic because being surrounded by things I find beautiful makes me happy.
I realise not everyone cares quite as much about design, but if you do – if you care even half as much – I’d love you as a client. If you don’t get excited about design, and your branding (wedding stationery, website, etc) merely serves a purpose I’m probably not the designer for you.
Still here? Fab.
That’s not to say that I don’t care about serving a purpose. Far from it. If I’m designing your branding I want to know your product or service inside out. I want to know who it’s for, what you’re about, and the feeling you want your clients to get when they buy from you or visit your website. Because that’s what design is ultimately about – giving the right feeling to the right clients. If you think I might be the designer for you have a little look at ‘what can I do for you?’ for more information on services I offer and how I work.
If you want to know more about me stay here for a bit first.
A bit of background info
You’d quite possibly guess from my aforementioned obsession that design is what I’ve always known I wanted to do. From leaving school I studied graphic design and illustration for four years and have been a full time graphic designer for the nine plus years since. After working my way from junior designer to studio manager in design agency/studios in Tunbridge Wells and London I took the plunge and went self employed in 2011.
My first steps into setting up alone saw the launch of Charlie Loves Lucy specialising in creating design focussed wedding stationery. It’s such a joy creating a couple’s wedding stationery suite. Bringing designs from initial concepts through to finished pieces in all their detailed, tactile glory is a real pleasure. Super excitable clients too so that’s a bonus.
So from Charlie Loves Lucy we find ourselves here (the royal ‘we’ that is). Although Charlie Loves Lucy was developed as a brand focussed primarily on wedding and social stationery I haven’t ever stopped working with clients on a variety of design and illustration commissions. Working on a real mixture of
projects keeps me passionate and constantly pushes me to develop my craft as a designer. This is where the decision came to bring everything together under Claire-Hawkes.com. Wanting to streamline and have everything in one place (along with the completely personal service I offer) means it makes perfect sense to be working under my own name.
Phew, that’s pretty much it. A fairly quick skim through of how I reached the point I’m at today.
Through my time so far in the design industry I’ve been lucky enough to have worked with a vast array of clients (you can see some ridiculously kind words from some of the most recent ones here). From awesome small businesses to the likes of the BBC; from those just starting out to those well established and at the top of their game like floral designer Judith Blacklock; from beautifully tiny, intimate weddings to large scale events – the thing they all have in common is the desire for really great design that tells their story and gives their clients/guests a wonderfully warm feeling that sticks.
Much of my work involves designing for my clients and putting their personality across. It is important though that you choose a designer whose style resonates with you. I’d say the best word I’ve so far come up with to describe my personal style is ‘contrasting’. Possibly with a preference for a slight masculine edge.
I do love a super busy, pretty floral pattern, but I think it’s at its best when set off against clean, crisp typography and sharp lines. I prefer bright, punchy colours when they’re set against a muted, more subtle palette. I love to screen
print and the use of flat colours and sharp lines on a rough, textured stock pleases me no end. My favourite work uses contrasting patterns, typography, palettes and materials so that each element works to enhance the other.
Seeing as my attempt at putting my style into words is so pitifully lacking you’ll likely get much more out of taking a look at examples of my recent work in the portfolio section of the site. If you like my style and the idea of me creating something for you or with you do get in touch.
a few of my favourite things
Screen printing – I’m a member of central London print studio, Print Club, and it’s such a brilliant place! I love the work that goes into screen printing and it’s super satisfying seeing your designs revealed all crisp and lovely as you lift the screen (mostly crisp and lovely)
Magazines – designy ones, interior ones, snowboarding ones, gentlemanly ones, a sprinkling of fashion ones
Salted cinema popcorn – in a battle with sushi to be named my favourite food (rioja is in a similar war with the mojito for the title of favourite beverage)
Snowboarding – I don’t get to go nearly enough living in less-than-snowy Kent (and I’m pretty bad at it) but my goodness I love it
Limited edition prints – there’s something very special about owning one in a limited run of something
Mr Hewitt – nine years with the weirdo and he still makes me laugh and smile every single day
Bright coral/red/pink painted nails (slightly chipped)