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Reflections of an Intern

My Name is Rowena Leavy, I have been working in Bespoke & Co for nearly a year now, on a Jobsbridge Internship. Initially I began an eight week work placement in June of last year, through ‘Kick Start’ which is in partnership with the ‘Kilkenny Leader Program’. The course is a job placement initiative for unemployed people. The course is run by Ann Marie Mc Sorley of ‘Mc Sorley Training,’ Una McGrath and Bob Monks. The goal of Kickstart is to match employers with an employee’s skill set. Initially I did not know how my skills in Graphic Design and photography would fit in a framing company. I had seen the work that Bespoke were doing at a trade show a few years beforehand, and loved the on trend style of their frames, and how they had showcased their work, they stuck in my head. A meeting was arranged with Jamie and Nicola Connery at their business premises in Purcells inch, Kilkenny. I was interviewed in their showroom which resembles an Art Gallery. The walls are adorned with many beautifully framed photographs and pieces of fine art, it is a relaxed contemporary setting, white walls, sleek design, lacquered concrete floor and parked in the middle of the room, sits a beautiful 1959 ‘Vespa’ a real icebreaker. We get down to business, and I soon realise through our conversation that we have a lot to offer each other. I started work the following Monday.


It is during this eight week placement that I began to familiarise myself with the company products and brand identity. One of my tasks was to design an insert for Bespoke & Co’s new ‘Desk top’ frames for their ‘Bespoke & Go’ ready made frame range. The frames are contemporary with clean lines, made in their ‘Sail Range’ which is exclusive to Bespoke & Co. The desktops are all made in house in Kilkenny.

In addition to this the company website needed to be updated with new photographs of their products, I was given the opportunity to photograph the contents of the showroom, and most importantly the ‘Chevrons’ which are the sample corner pieces of the frames. It was vital that these images give the viewer an accurate visual description of how the frame looks, so that when they purchase a frame through the website, they are getting exactly what they see in the image. I learned on the job how to place and light each piece. It was the first time I had to photograph highly reflective objects, and I found this a very challenging process, but very rewarding when I reached my ‘Eureka’ moment.

When I began working here at Bespoke & Co, I had very little knowledge of the framing process. To me a frame was just something that housed the image, maybe in a nice shade to fit with my interior, but it is through working here, that I have learned there is a real art and skill to framing a piece. I had no idea that a photograph or art piece can be severely damaged by acid bleeding from the mount board, for this reason all mounts used at Bespoke are conservation quality. Whether it is photography or fine art work that comes through the door, it is handled with care and respect. Jamie, Brian and Marcin have a keen eye for what frame will compliment a piece as soon as they see it. Old school framing techniques are still practiced here, a master gilder will take away a raw wood frame and turn it into a one of a kind hand gilded piece. I also got to observe and photograph Jamie practice the technique of  ‘Wash Lines’ which were done by hand; a dying art.

I have had many opportunities to photograph different subjects over the year, from the guys working in the warehouse on the pieces, jewellery and photographing the unusual items that are brought into us from time to time for framing. My favourite for example were packets of curry powder. The customer liked the graphic on the packets, as the character sported an eccentric ‘Handlebar’ Moustache, rather like his own and wanted to hang them in his kitchen.

Overall the experience of working here has been more than a positive. I work in a lovely relaxed setting, with exceptionally friendly employers and co-workers. I have learned that your frame is not just something you pick up as an after thought, but it can be truly ‘Bespoke’ to compliment your photograph, art piece or even your favourite curry.



Wolda Awards

Threesixty wins two Wolda 2010 awards

Threesixty, the Irish B2B brand agency, is delighted to announce that it has won two prestigious international design awards for corporate branding work for two Irish companies. The two branding projects chosen by WOLDA were for Trilogy Technologies and Bespoke & Co.

The WOLDAs recognise the very best of logo and trademark design from around the world and this year over 1,400 entries were received.

Bespoke & Co and Trilogy Technologies are high innovation companies operating in competitive B2B markets. They both worked with Threesixty to create a highly differentiated market position and market winning brand propositions.

Bespoke & Co is newly founded, low-cost custom framing business for professional photographers that innovatively fuses the benefits of a traditional retail framing service (convenience, short turnaround times and design customisation) with the benefits of wholesale frame suppliers (lower prices and wider productchoice).The logo and visual identity needed to reflect the dynamic online frame customisation service but still stay true to the craftsmanship and design quality of the products. Bridging the gap between heritage and contemporary design, the logo expresses the ethos of a brand that rises above passing fashion to focus on enduring design quality.

According to Threesixty Managing Director, Simon O’Dwyer, “We are absolutely thrilled for our clients to get this recognition; we thrive on working with people like Trilogy Technologies and Bespoke & Co who are absolutely passionate about scaling their businesses. When you bring together the ultimate triumvirate of innovation, brand and people, you have a real opportunity to make a big impact in fast growing international markets. The success of clients like Nualight, Glanbia, iQuate and Adesco is testament to that.”

Threesixty is Ireland’s leading specialist B2B full service brand marketing agency based in Kilkenny with services clustered around four core areas; brand strategy, brand mentoring and coaching, brand identity systems and brand marketing communications. 00353 (0)56 7726400

About Wolda
Wolda is the high-profile graphic design award scheme that rewards the best logos and trademarks designed throughout the world, creating an archive that tracks the evolution of tastes, styles and trends in global design, year after year. Wolda’s standing is guaranteed by the endorsement of the most important design associations and schools.

Titanium Stroma

Our newest colour extension to our framing ranges is the Stroma in Titanium. With twelve unique colour / size variants the Stroma offers great flexibility for a wide range of photography styles and finished artwork sizes. The look of the range itself is defined by a clean box bevel profile and dragged / distressed finish. This combination of contemporary cut and textured finish means that the Stroma is perfectly for contemporary homes or office interiors. So what does the Titanium add to the range? As a very subtle / neutral finish it works well with both black and white and colour photography – so if you have a client that is looking for a single frame solution for a mix of styles, the Stroma Titanium might just tick that box.

Framing Trends 2012

Frame trends in Ireland in 2012 are going to be quite reflective of where we stand as a country in our economic circumstances. A back to basics crafted look very much coming to the fore. The clean lines of natural wood and simple colours of black and white are very much leading the way. Simple and unpretentious, the focus is going to be very much on the photographic work, using the frame to encase and support the work rather than outshine it.
Metallic finishes are moving from what can be seen as over the top gold to more tasteful silvers and pewters.
For the more traditional tastes a classical French feel reflects a high quality without an over the top opulence providing a very organic frame to the work.
Bearing in mind the investment the customer has made in your work and the obvious trend toward value for money, consumers want to know that their product will last. Conservation materials are being used more and more in manufacturing to make the product less of a disposable item and more of an heirloom.
In photography framing for 2012 the ability to frame a beautiful piece of work on the wall that projects the image and draws the viewer in to that special moment captured in time will be the focus.

25% off every order of 10 or more Yell Custom frames

For a limited time, Bespoke & Co are offering 25% of every order of 10 or more Yell Custom frames in any size. Yell Custom is a modern and natural hand finished frame. It’s design simplicity makes it perfect for showcasing both black and white and saturated colour photography.

For details e-mail or call Jamie on +353(0)87 2504278.