Home' Scoop Homes and Art : SHAA 34 Spring 2012 Contents 50 HOMES & ART SPRING 2012
COMPILED BY Clare Ryan
THE FLIP SIDE
Hailing from Perth, Kate Stokes is making leaps and bounds in the design
industry with her lighting designs and company Coco Flip.
What made you decide to establish Coco Flip?
I finished my studies in Industrial Design back in 2006 and worked in a few
creative roles during the years following. At that stage I wasn’t too sure which
direction my career would take but I enjoyed the opportunity to develop
broad skills in graphic design, marketing, communications, interior design
etc. After moving to Melbourne in 2009, I met some incredibly inspiring and
supportive people and that was the first time I thought seriously about starting
my own practice. It was a completely daunting prospect at the time, but I had
a strong urge to try and make a living designing my own furniture and lighting,
manufacturing products locally. I received an ArtStart grant from Australia
Council in 2010 and that gave me the first push I needed to establish Coco Flip.
How did the concept for the Mr. Cooper pendant come about?
I’d recently retu rn ed from New Yo rk an d was keen to explore an industrial, o ld-
wo rld aesthetic with a con temporary feel. The fi rst sketches for Mr. Cooper
we re inspired by the tin-can telephon es we made as children . I liked the idea
of a series of pendan ts cascading from a single poi nt, a nd decided to fo cus on
using copper, as it’s su ch a bea utiful, raw material .
So what’s next on the cards for you?
I have a few projects in the pipeline. I ’m currently exploring some different
materials and processes and hoping to release new products later this year. A lot
of time and research goes into developing each produc t and making sure that
it’s ready for the market at the time of launch. I don’t like to rush these things.
Any future plans or directions you want to take the company?
I’d like Coco Flip to evolve and grow at a comfortable pace and I’d like to
do things the right way. I’m still very young and I’m still learning a lot about
the industry and myself as a designer so I don’t want to rush things and make
mistakes. I ’m still deciding exactly which direction to take the company in the
lon g term but I definitely wan t to retain a creative fo cu s rather than getting
too caught up in the commercial aspects of running a business. I ’m working
with a Lo n do n- based co mpa ny call ed Matilda that has the licen ce to produ ce
so me products in the UK for distribution throu ghout Europe, Middle East and
Africa. That’s been an exciting developmen t an d it makes a lot of sen se to use
local materials an d elimi nate shipping across the globe.
Visit cocoflip.com.a u .
“The first sketches for Mr. Cooper were
inspired by the tin-can telephones we made
as children. I liked the idea of a series of
pendants cascading from a single point,
and decided to focus on using copper, as
it’s such a beautiful, raw material”
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