Designer of the Week - Outie!

Hey folks, are you in the mood for some eco-loving, upcycled creativity? Today’s Designer of the Week is Katrina from New Zealand label Outie. Katrina has sent us a couple of her Outie Splat Mats™, one for review, and one… for you? Yep, that’s right, there’s a giveaway at the end of this feature. Read on!

Outie Upcycled, Recycled Advertising Billboard Splat Mats

*Can you tell that we were dangling a treat above our heads to get this photo?

The Product Review

Today’s review item, the Outie Splat Mat™, is a product that every household could use, whether it’s under the high chair, change table, jolly-jumper, or dog’s dinner. You can use it for a picnic mat, a play mat, or any kind of mess mat.

So what makes this product unique? Each one is made from up-cycled billboard vinyl that was once used as advertising. Since this stuff was made to withstand long periods of outdoor weather, it works very well as a splat-saver for around the home. I found that messes wiped off easily, and the edging and double stitching on these babies appears to be just about indestructible. I also dig the fact that you get a little bit of advertising ephemera in each one. Oh, and they’re reversible too!

The verdict… Eco-friendly innovation with practical everyday application.

Outie Upcycled, Recycled Advertising Billboard Splat Mats

The Indie Label

Katrina took her first steps into the small business world with her range of creative maternity tees. She explains, “Outie began when I became pregnant and realised that I wanted to wear something fun to show off my belly. I thought ‘wouldn’t it be cool if there was a little window…’ and then I started drawing and suddenly I had a set of belly-bump designs that I loved.

“I made the tees for myself but I was chased (literally!) down the street (it wasn’t hard to catch me at that stage…). I realised that other mummies-to-be wanted to wear them too, so I made more. And more still. And ‘Outie’ was born. My son Beau is 9 months old now so Outie is only a wee baby business…”

The Creative Mind

Katrina’s business name, “Outie”, represents both her personal experience as a mum-to-be and the connection between mother and child. She says, “I have always had an ‘inny’ belly button. But as I got bigger and bigger with my first baby, my belly button turned inside-out and became an ‘outie’.”

“The belly-button is symbolic of where you were once united with your mother (and your baby with you). It’s significant as a symbol of growth and change and connections and general cuteness. It also offers a parallel for the way that an orderly life is turned inside-out when a baby arrives. Outie has a lot of fun with the ‘messy’ parenting stuff with our Vomoflage tees and Splat Mats.”

The Inspiration

Katrina describes her design process as “scribbles become doodles, and doodles move onto a fresh page so I can work on them a bit more”. She likes to work with visual puns, and favours upcycled materials, giving old objects new life while thinking of the environment at the same time.

Katrina lives with on the West Coast of Auckland, New Zealand with “her man, her boy and her old bulldog – Handsome”. She explains, “There are birds everywhere and it is really quiet. The sun streams in over a ridge in the distance every morning and we have a brazier outside. We have a three-bedroom house that we built together and I have commandeered one of the sunny bedrooms as my studio workspace. It is full of fabric and a giant Oak Principal’s desk and old flip-up school desks. I surround myself with cute little objects and images (a lot of which are from my grandmother) and I love making things for my son. A lot of my inspiration comes from problem-solving issues I encounter from being a new mummy. Ideas just come.”

The Whimsical Spirit

Here’s three fun facts about Katrina (in her own words):

  1. I am slightly obsessed with buttons.

  2. I have recently developed a love of running.

  3. I have to jump in order to hit my head on things that would make other people duck.

The Handmade Collection

In the Outie range you’ll find a selection of fun anytime tees, cute maternity tees and dresses, and the Outie Splat Mat™. You can shop online (international shipping available) or visit Outie on Facebook for the latest news.

Outie Baby Bump Maternity T-shirts

Would you like to win a round Outie Splat Mat™? To enter the giveaway, simply visit Outie to check out the range and then submit your entry through the Rafflecopter widget below. You can also score extra entries into the prize draw by joining us on Facebook or tweeting about the giveaway. Entries close on 13 December, 2012. Australian entries only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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