Design Inspiration from Aitutaki

December, 2016 will go down as one of my most memorable Christmasses of all time after I jetted off to Aitutaki in the Cook Islands for two weeks. Where on earth are the Cook Islands you may well ask? Well they’re pretty much as far from the UK as you can possibly get and, just to paint the picture, it took me a full thirty six hours to get there (London to Los Angeles, Los Angeles to Auckland, Auckland to Rarotonga, Rarotonga to Aitutaki).Yes, a bit of a mission!

No matter how long it took to get there, Aitutaki is well worth the journey. I would go so far as to say that it is one of my favourite places on earth (quite a claim!) The people are exceptionally friendly, the weather is perfect and the scenery is just stunning.

I didn’t have enough space in my luggage for any rag rug projects (plus it was probably a bit too warm for making a rug) but I was on the look out for design inspiration for my 2017 pieces. Below are some photos I particularly liked from a design perspective and why I chose them 🙂

Rag Rug Kit Aitutaki

Although I didn’t have the space in my luggage to bring along rags for rag rugging, I did take a rag rug kit with me to gift to someone creative on the island. They have a few shirt makers on the island with lots of lovely offcuts that would work perfectly in a rag rug.

Rag Rug Kit and Cat

I gave the rag rug kit to Steph who makes pearl jewellery on Aitutaki. Not only is she wonderfully creative but she also rescues stray cats in her spare time – I couldn’t have found a better person to bring into the Ragged Life fold.

Aitutaki Beach Villas Sea

I loved the fact that there were always a few wispy clouds around in Aitutaki. They always make for more interesting skies and I loved the contrast in blues between the sky and sea. Blue is likely to be my colour of 2017.

Etu Moana Path palm Tree

There was something so striking about this yellow path meandering into the distance through palm trees and bushes. The path has star fish imprinted along its length.

Ports Authority Aitutaki

This cornflower blue of the Ports Authority in Aitutaki is one of my favourite shades of blue so I will definitely use it as a base colour in one of my 2017 rugs.

Give Way Sign Aitutaki

I stumbled across this “give way” sign while exploring the island and it just made me smile – I think all signs should look this way.

Oil Painting on Drift Wood

My mum gave my dad oil pastels for Christmas so he had lots of fun painting. After he ran out of paper, he moved onto natural canvases, including driftwood and coconuts. The natural grain of the wood adds an extra dimension to the piece.

Oil painting on a coconut seascape

This painting of the sky, sea and beach was done on one of the many coconuts around our villa.

One Foot Island Aitutaki

No, this isn’t a stock shot… This was the view from my beach hut on One Foot Island. It was so interesting how the palm trees framed the scene so perfectly.

Coral Spit One Foot Island

One Foot Island had this interesting coral spit extending out into the sea.

Crystal Clear Water on One Foot Island

One of the most striking things about the sea in Aitutaki is how crystal clear it is.

Sunset One Foot Island Aitutaki

Sometimes when the sun set on One Foot Island, the entire sky would glow pink which was an awesome sight. You won’t get much better colour combinations than the ones that nature gives you.

One Foot Island Cook Islands Sunset Palm Trees

This sunset looks like the entire sky was on fire. I always think a sunset is made even more spectacular when there are clouds. Maybe that’s the Brit in me 🙂

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