A Look Behind the Scenes of Token Homewares

by | Jul 16, 2013 | Industry Interviews

Take a Sneak Peek Behind the Scenes of Token Homewares

Say hello to …

Abigail Causer Director of Token Homewares.

token homewares light

Tell us a little about yourself and your company?

I’m Abi, a designer and maker at heart. I grew up in South Yorkshire in a little village outside of Doncaster. I wouldn’t say I had a conventional childhood; my dad was the village joiner and has a workshop conjoined to the house so I spent most of my early years in there experimenting with anything I could get in to! As I got older I’d repair furniture in my spare time, sometimes I’d turn spindles on the lathe and fix chairs and stools for people. Coming from a small village I found people really looked after things they had and would much rather fix them than buy new. I guess that’s where my love of making things comes from, and through that my hatred for consumerist “throwaway” mentality.

After leaving school I enrolled on the most amazing art foundation degree which really was the most self indulgent year of my life, I just spent the whole time making things, getting into all of the college’s resources and learning all kinds of new techniques. It really helped me narrow down what I wanted to do with my life. I then went on to study product design and digital modelling at LJMU where I really thrived in developing my own values and design ethos, and met some really inspiring and influential people who were so insightful and helpful in helping me map out my future and, more practically with business strategies that they really set me on the springboard to working for myself. I partly developed my existing lighting range during my final project which I exhibited at the LJMU grad show and then went on to exhibit at New Designers 2012. I was really overwhelmed with the response from the public that it really inspired me with confidence to bite the bullet and work for myself!

Token was recently launched as design brand specialising in the design of investment pieces to keep. Not lead by changing trends or fashion, each product is an exclusive, timeless design, a little different from anything you can find elsewhere; produced with attention to detail and locally sourced from the best materials, and to the highest quality possible. I can tell you all about every step in the production process! Our mission is to provide every customer with an object of intricate and unique design, which hopefully will be kept forever. A “Token” that makes a fantastic and unusual gift.

Describe your typical working day … 

I’ve found being self employed that no two days are ever the same but then that keeps it interesting! My favourite days are the ones I spend in my studio, in the workshop or out at the laser studio, prototyping and developing a product is the most frustrating yet rewarding part of my job!

What is the best thing about your job? 

Knowing that everything I do is investing in my future and it’s all building something worthwhile.

Do you use any specialist techniques? 

I think working with my hands is the most valuable aspect to my business, it makes each product personal, but then cutting things with lasers is always fun!

Your products … 

What is your personal favourite product in your collection?

My favourite is cylinder, the leatheresque texture, woven-through sections of pattern along with it being long and tubular reminds me of scales. There’s something oddly reptilian about it.

token homewares cylinder light

What are the most popular products in your range?

Drum surprisingly, has proven popular, particularly with young men because the design projects “batman” silhouettes onto the walls! That and the striking design, and over sized scale give it the statement factor in a room.

token homewares cylinder lights

token homewares cylinder light

What are you working on at the moment?

I always have loads of ideas floating around and am working on and constraining them constantly; developing them into products is where the hard work and skill comes in. I really enjoy working on lighting, the designs can be a little more extrovert creating stunning centrepieces for homes that are both beautiful and useful, we’re hoping to release our next range soon, so keep an eye out!

What do you hope to achieve in the next year? 

The dream is to work with interior designers or architects on a commercial project and potentially tap into film and television set design. I’d love to see our lampshades in a trendy cafe or designer hotel!

Your inspiration … 

What inspires your products? 

Each design is independent and I wouldn’t say that Token has a specific aesthetic “design style” but our current designer lighting range took inspiration from geometric pattern, I spent weeks obsessed with maths and physically weaving pieces of paper together to make sure the 2D pattern would actually fit together and make sense. A quote I personally admire is that ‘good design really is simply intelligence made visible” Le Corbusier. I like my designs to be enjoyable on another level in that when looking at a product you can learn more about its personality through how it’s made and put together. The weave lampshades don’t use glue or tape but are held together by a series of different clipping and locking mechanisms all working together in a sort of woven pattern, if you look closely you can see exactly how they work.

What other card and gift designers do you admire? 

My absolute favourite is Dutch design brand “Droog”, translating as “Dry, as in humour. Each product intelligently communicates something different which often makes me smile. I really admire that they so consistently use something as intangible as humour to interact with the user throughout their whole collection.

What current or upcoming trend are you’re coveting? 

I love the mish mashed, fragmented style for interiors that I’m seeing more and more, because that’s where Token fits in, your home can be as eclectic as you like so long as each piece is something you love!

Thank you Abi!

Visit the Token Homewares website now

Update: Sadly the Token Homewares site doesn’t seem to be available.

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