In Style: Anika Cook, The Gently Unfurling Sneak

Anika Cook professes to like small touches of absurdity, vintage illustrations, old paper and books, bright colours, and stripes, but even more than that, she likes putting all those things into her printed clothing, accessories and artworks. And there you have her brand, The Gently Unfurling Sneak. Be amused, be curious, and be sneaky when you see Anika gently unfurling her wares at Life Instyle Melbourne in August 2012.

What path bought you to Life Instyle?
I’ve run my little business for about five years and slowly built up the range of products. This year there are a few new and exciting things in the pipeline so I decided to use Life Instyle as a great big shiny launching pad for them – very exciting!

A typical day at work involves…
Emails, coffee, sketching and staring into space, much computer design-y time, more coffee, more emails, cutting and printing and folding and attaching, and usually a trip or two to the post office.

My style is best described as…
Strange and intriguing. I am very much enamoured with Victorian-era imagery and use it a lot in collages and illustrations. Most of my work is inspired by strange happenings, amazing creatures, old books and buildings, bright colours and timeless adventures; with a droplet of bravery and a good slosh of absurdism.

I live my Life Instyle by…
Shunning the mediocre and always looking for something different.

Favourite piece of advice…
I’ve never been very good at taking advice from other people.

If I wasn’t doing this I’d probably…
I really don’t know! Hopefully something just as fun.

Brands I admire include…
Milk from a Thistle, ffiXXed, Romance Was Born, artist Claudia Drake, Able and Game, Elke Kramer and I could go on…

My workspace is…
Full of little drawers, with good light and many printers. Also surprisingly neat at the moment (I’ve just moved studios and haven’t had a chance to mess it up).

I get my best business ideas by…
It usually involves coffee, sketchbook and staring out a window, although I’ve had a few on-the-train brainwaves.

The biggest influence in my business life is…
Surrealism, particularly the collages of Max Ernst. It’s pretty art-nerdy, but I can’t go past it.

My dream business mentor would be…
I’ll take Max Ernst, and we’ll leave out the inconvenient fact that he’s dead.

Right now I’m working on…
Some new accessories! They’re top secret but I’m very excited…

My biggest goal for the next 12 months is…
Be so charming to the cafe people downstairs that they’ll start delivering flat whites to my door.

In five years time I’ll…
Have some lovely workers to do all my boring jobs (hello, invoicing).

Green with Envy for…
Food: the seafood at Claypots in South Melbourne, mmm
Drink: I have heard much about mulled cider lately, and am intrigued to try it.
Book: I’m re-reading Carter Beats the Devil by Glen David Gold – it’s great.
Blog: Beci Orpin’s blog is always colourful and amusing
Art: Lucy James is a favourite at the moment
Style Icon: Humphrey Bogart
Holiday destination: Japan Japan Japan.

For more information visit: thegentlyunfurlingsneak.com

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