Our chosen theme was Eco Bag Art. By providing blank canvas bags and plenty of assorted art materials, we offered those taking part the chance to get creative and make a personalised bag, which they could take away and use again and again.
Our event proved to be timely, as the English government simultaneously announced that they would soon be introducing a 5p levy on the use of plastic bags, bringing them in line with Wales and Northern Ireland.
Around 1 trillion plastic bags are produced worldwide each year. These are contributing to the growing landfill problem and littering our oceans and beaches. It follows then that we should all be doing our best to avoid using plastic bags and adopt reusable bags instead.
As inspiration for the workshop participants, we asked some of our favourite designers to create their own bags – including Mini Moderns, KraalD, Misha Waterton, Rosanna Yarde, Liz McLaren and Urban Bird – which we displayed on our stand. They were hung from an impressive stylised tree, designed by Designersblock.
We were delighted to be joined by Katarina Dimitrijevic from KraalD, who is renowned for making beautiful things from waste plastic, and by graphic designer Jitesh Patel, author of The Tote Bag book, which features over 120 of the most striking and inventive totes from around the world. Jitesh gave us a hand in helping people to design their bags and even designed one himself. He captured the day he spent with us on his blog, here.
The interest in our workshop was quite overwhelming. Among others, designers, students and families joined us, also a gentleman recovering from a stroke and a surgeon who wanted to test his artistic skills. Everyone had their own way of approaching it, and fun was had, which resulted in some fabulous finished bags. We’ve chosen a selection of them, featured below:
Designersblock took place in September in a series of spaces across the Southbank Centre, featuring exhibitions, special events, activities and installations from over 200 UK and international designers.
If you’re interested in running a workshop for your organisation, event, or show, please contact Naomi@conneely.co.uk.
And following, even more lovely bags….!