Q & A : Simon Mitchell : Alfred & Wilde : London

Alfred & Wilde is a London-based design brand creating modern, bold and fun art prints, stationery and homewares. Inspired by the city, using traditional printing techniques, and proudly made in the UK. Alfred & Wilde designs have a playful focus on pattern, shape and colour, reflecting well known places and spaces. Founded by designer Simon Mitchell in 2013, Alfred & Wilde designs can be found in design stores across East London.


Tell us a little about you, where you grew up, and where you live now.

I now live in a beautiful bit of Hackney, lovingly called Victoria Park Village by its residents. I think it is perfect. And it’s walking distance to places like Broadway Market and Columbia Road. However, I spent most of my youth in a sleepy commuter village in Berkshire, most notable for being home to the high security mental facility Broadmoor Hospital.

What inspired you to choose your career ?

My mum studied art at college, and I had a great art teacher at school. But my career has taken a few wrong turns, or detours, on its journey, and I am still working my day job part-time while I established Alfred & Wilde. But looking back, I think I always knew I wanted a creative career – especially as I quit Cambridge University to go back to art college!

Which are your favourite cultural/ creative places to visit (and take kids if you are in charge of any that day)?

East London has hundreds of art galleries and studios so a day exploring those would be brilliant. Especially in Hackney Wick. We could add in the V&A Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green to keep the kids happy. It it is Sunday then we have to go to Columbia Road flower market, which is one of my favourite places in the world. Not just for the East-end flower sellers, but the independent shops and galleries lining the road.

Which products/ areas of your business are you most excited about ?

I have just launched a new range of mugs, which I am very excited about. You can see them on my website. And I am in talks with some major retailers to stock Alfred & Wilde so there are lots of things happening.

Which talented people or companies are you most impressed with at the moment?

I love Lazy Oaf. They have a great eye for crazy pop graphics. And the printer James Brown seems incapable of doing a bad design.

You’ve won a (paid) year off from work for being a ‘good citizen’ (& school for the kids) where do you take the family ?!

India. I have been a couple of times and just love the amazing food and people. There is so much to do and see there so a year sounds about right. Plus I love a good Bollywood poster.

Which are your favourite shops/ or destinations for birthday treats?

For my birthday, I’d have anything from The Conran Shop. And I love art books, so anything from the Tate Modern bookshop, or the three bookshops on Broadway Market. And for food, it would have to be SpitJacks in Victoria Park Village. Their spitroast chicken makes Nando’s taste amateur.

Where is your favourite spot for a long lunch with family & friends ?

My parent’s place in the New Forest. Overlooking the fields and wild ponies.

What was the first record you bought, and what music are you listening to at the moment on spotify?

I’ve just discovered Psychmagik on Spotify. But I would be lost without BBC 6 Music. I am only a little embarrassed to say that my first record was Madonna.

Who is on your dream dinner party list ? Prince is in town, so we can arrange that if you’re keen!

I’m most comfortable with people I already know, so I think it would have to be friends and family. No one famous! They always have too much baggage.
Thanks for popping over Simon, I’m looking forward to seeing all the exciting projects you are working on, come to light. xo