Marina Mill, the ‘Queen’ of historical printing


Guest blog post. Hidden away in a Victorian mill on the banks of the River Medway, is a rare gem of a find. A team of skilled artisans, by the name of Marina Mill, is quietly creating bespoke fabrics for a discerning clientele, from the foremost London interior decorators to international yacht designers. mml-wst_1015_d566 Design Director Tandine Rawkins frequently develops designs for printed and woven fabrics for high end interior projects as well as their own successful brand of woven outdoor fabrics, EXTEX. Their exquisite hand prints are produced on 25m flatbed tables by a two man printing team, using silk screens and water-based printing inks. mml-wst 1015 d751 Marina Mill was founded by Keith and Stephanie Rawkins, who, on leaving art college in the early sixties realised they couldn’t make a living from fine art, so decided to try something else. Keith confidently acquired a job at Ascher’s London print works. Zika Ascher had a world wide reputation. He commissioned the top artists of the day to design headscarves; namely, Matisse, Barbara Hepworth, Ben Nicholson and Henry Moore. mml-wst_1015_d716 In 1967, after a four year apprenticeship at Ascher’s, Keith went into business with his wife as Stefan Keef, providing handprinted fabrics for such fashion icons as Ossie Clark, Caroline Charles, Thea Porter, Mr Fish and many more, including Freddie Mercury’s famously flamboyant costumes for his epic stage performances. mml-wst_1015_d740 Nowadays Marina Mill is run by their son Guy, and daughter, Tandine, who continue to maintain the high standards and careful attention to detail set by their parents nearly fifty years ago. With meticulous replications of historical fabrics for royal castles and households in their portfolio, and a large archive of around 2000 designs, Marina Mill is one of the best kept secrets in the business.

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