Leeds interiors brand scoops wallpaper award for this amazing graphic print with local artist Drew Millward

A Leeds interiors brand has won an industry award for its wallpaper design after teaming up with a local artist.

Sunday, 13th June 2021, 4:45 pm
The Monkey Puzzle Tree has been awarded a Design Guild Mark for its ‘Hit The North’ cork wallpaper (pictured)
The Monkey Puzzle Tree has been awarded a Design Guild Mark for its ‘Hit The North’ cork wallpaper (pictured)

The Monkey Puzzle Tree, an independent business based in Meanwood, has been awarded a Design Guild Mark for its ‘Hit The North’ cork wallpaper.

Founder Charlotte Raffo launched the business in 2017, combining her background in textile manufacturing with her love for design.

She draws inspiration from her home city of Leeds and works with local artists to create distinctive fabrics and wallcoverings based on a piece of art.

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The Monkey Tree founder Charlotte Raffo (left) teamed up with graphic designer Drew Millward to create the wallpaper

Charlotte teamed up with Yorkshire artist Drew Millward, known for his psychedelic poster designs for rock bands such The Arctic Monkeys, to create the Hit The North wallpaper.

Combining Drew's graphic design with sustainable natural cork, it's a large scale wallpaper which references Modernism and the industrial north.

Hit The North was one of just four designs to receive the Design Guild Mark for 2020/21 in the Textiles, Wall Coverings, Surfaces, Carpets and Floor Coverings category.

Charlotte said: "It’s wonderful to get this kind of recognition and to build awareness of our beautiful textiles and wallcoverings.

"As a new Northern creative brand trying to do things a bit differently, it’s brilliant to be recognised by such a well regarded, well-established design institution.

“Drew’s aesthetic is very much wedded to the north, so I felt his work would translate brilliantly for this project.

"I decided to use cork because, not only is it a good fit with Drew’s Mid-Century illustrative style, it’s also such a beautiful and sustainable material."

The bold, monochromatic design features industrial buildings, Yorkshire hillsides and circular, sun-like motifs influenced by the designs of the Modernist era.

Drew, who lives near Keighley, added: “I was really excited by the idea of working with The Monkey Puzzle Tree on this design.

"I’m influenced by the landscape I see around me every day – the hills, crumbling factories and mill buildings of the post-industrial north.

"I realise I have a distinctive style and it’s not for everyone, so I needed to create something that would work in a home.

"Mid-Century modernism is a big reference point for me, so I pictured a wallpaper design that would sit alongside teak furniture and a nice Eames chair."