I was rather surprised by the remarkable similarity between Orla Kiely's 'Stem' fabric, designed in 2000.
And Paule Vézelay's 'Composure' fabric (above) designed in 1967.
Paule Vézelay in 1984
The painter, sculptor, etcher and book illustrator Paule Vézelay was born and brought up in Bristol as Marjorie Watson-Williams. In 1911 she went to the Slade School of Fine Art but soon left finding it old hat and meaningless to her. She moved to Paris in 1926 and changed her name to Paule Vézelay, and submerged herself in abstraction. She joined the Société Abstraction-Création in 1934 and a friend of Hans Arp and his wife Sophie Taeuber-Arp, exhibiting with Arp and Wassily Kandinsky in Milan in 1938. At the outbreak of war in 1939 and to avoid internment by the Nazi's she returned to Bristol where she recorded bomb damage and barrage balloons. In the 1950s she designed textiles for a number of companies including Heal's. She continued to paint until her death in 1984.
There is a wonderful little documentary film made in1984 where Paule Vézelay is interviewed by a very non-Assie sounding Germaine Greer (Link at foot of this post). Paule comes across and fiercely independent but with grace and modesty. She maintains the artists should never marry. I think she is right about that.
Meanwhile, Orla Kiely has built up an empire from one simple graphic shape (often referred to as 'iconic') by applying it to just about everything she can lay her hands on.
The Paule Vézelay fabric 'Variations', designed in 1954
On the other hand, Paule Vézelay worked every single day from the 1930s to her death in 1984, not long after the documentary was made. And it was only late in her life that was she recognised in the UK. She never made her fortune but her work was her life. She never stopped.
For the documentary click HERE