We visited Phillip and Lisa Lawlor the popular Artist from Newcastle, Co. Down for a very special interview. They create pallet wood art, quotes and furniture using reclaimed wood where possible. They use reclaimed and pallet wood to create our pieces for many reasons. Originally motivated by the environmental impact, and while this is still the case, Lisa & Phillip have more and more come to love and appreciate its’ character and uniqueness. Something that most deem as useless or broken can actually be made into something very beautiful. Using this wood also benefits our customers, namely the cost can be kept minimal but more importantly, due to the very nature of using reclaimed and pallet wood, each piece created is unique in its appearance.
Q: What makes your product unique?
A: Working from home, all of our pictures are hand crafted, designed and hand painted by ourselves.
Loving the environment we live in we strive to use reclaimed materials and pallet wood where possible making each piece full of character and unique in appearance even before the artwork or quote is added.
Q: What inspires you as an artist/maker?
We are both very much inspired by nature whether it be a bed of wildflowers for me or the natural beauty of all things wood for Philip, so we can be pretty busy after a family walk in Tollymore 😉
The use of non traditional materials and reclaimed wood to create furniture and living spaces particularly inspires Philip, with programs such as George Clarke’s amazing spaces being common viewing.
Our quotes and artwork echo who we are and our values. We are inspired by the old classics that still resonate today that encourage and promote positivity, kindness and acceptance of ourselves and each other.
Q: How did you get started?
A: In Autumn 2014 we were making pictures for our kids rooms, carefully choosing only quotes we really wanted them to read and live by. Around the same time we were invited to a couple of Christmas craft fairs that friends of ours were running, knowing that for a number of years Philip had been making beautiful homewares from driftwood and reclaimed wood. We decided to include some of the quotes we had designed for our kids and they were so popular that we ended up pretty much selling out and taking orders. We haven’t looked back since.
Q: Why do you think it’s important to keep local?
A: The economy in Northern Ireland has not always thrived and can be unpredictable, especially for small businesses. Buying locally where possible whether it be from artists/makers or small businesses not only allows us to support the dreams of others but also directly help families dependant on the success of those businesses.
Using local services and buying our paint supplies and tools locally when we can is not only convenient and more environmentally friendly but we also benefit from the specialist advice they can offer face to face as well as the pallets they kindly keep for us 🙂
Q: What motto do you live/work by?
A: ‘Create the things you wish existed’
Philip always keeps me the firsts of everything he makes, mainly because many of the new pieces we make have been inspired by our desire/need for it to exist!
Visit onceuponadandelion.com to see a full gallery of her work.