My name is Sue Gifford, founder of Sue Gifford Design and I am an Artist and Surface Decorator based in Cork.
My passion is creating beautiful imagery realised from my love of adornment found in antique textiles and the intricate detail discovered in nature. I am also part of a UK and Ireland based group of professional upcyclers called ‘The House of Upcycling’. This is a supportive community of upcyclers, artists and decorators who work together to show how reused and upcycled pieces can be used in high end interior design settings.
Two pieces I’m particularly fond of are my Handpainted Hare Cupboard and my Rhubarb and Blackberry Chair, also entirely hand painted. These were family hand-me-down pieces, and painted with the imagery of the memories and stories of the owners. The colours and styles were considered to suit the individual interiors.
Older pieces or second hand items have such soul. They are usually really well made and built to last. My advice is to always consider giving a piece (especially if it holds sentimental value), a second chance of life. It keeps the items in circulation and keeps its history alive. Taking ownership of your pieces and breathing new life into them allows you to express your creativity and is overall better for the environment. Most items can be updated to suit today’s living, with a little thought, time and love.