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TDF Talks With Textile Designer Bonnie Ashley


Another podcast episode is already upon us!

Today, we talk small business, international expansion, dealing with copycats and much more. It’s a cheerful and down-to-earth chat with one of our favourite local design superheroes, Bonnie Ashley of Bonnie and Neil.

21st February, 2019

Behind the scenes at Bonnie and Neil! Photo – Amelia Stanwix.


Bonnie and Neil’s brand new collection, ‘Marigold’. Photo – Eve Wilson, Styling – Heather Nette King.



Bonnie and Neil’s brand new collection, ‘Marigold’. Photo – Eve Wilson, Styling – Heather Nette King.


Bonnie and Neil’s brand new collection. Photo – Eve Wilson, Styling – Heather Nette King.



Bonnie at work in the studio. Photo – Amelia Stanwix.




Lucy Feagins
Thursday 21st February 2019

Bonnie Ashley launched her business, with her now-husband, Neil Downie in 2010. What began as a humble handmade homewares business has grown exponentially over the past eight years – Bonnie and Neil now have over 60 stockists across Australia and a host of major international stockists too!

Amongst their many achievements, Bonnie and Neil has been sought out by some of the most amazing department stores in the world, including Anthropologie in the US, Liberty of London, and Le Bon Marche in Paris. Not bad for a husband-and-wife business with just six staff, who design and make everything here in Melbourne.

Today, I chat with Bonnie about staying ahead of the pack, securing those big international deals, dealing with copycats, and much more. It’s a super inspiring chat for anyone looking to grow a small creative business!

Remember, all our podcasts come with pictures! Simply download the Overcast or Pocket Casts apps to view relevant photographs and links whilst you listen.


Notes + Links

Bonnie and Neil’s latest homewares collection is launching this week! It’s a vibrant new range called Marigold – a few sneak peek photos are included above.

We’ve collaborated with Bonnie and Neil a few times over the years, most notably on two beautiful art-based homewares collections featuring local artists Elizabeth Barnett and Miranda Skoczek!

Bonnie’s latest project is one we’re convinced will be a HUGE success, she’s launching her own fashion line, called Bonne. The line includes a range of stunning silk dresses, based on exquisite floral textile designs by Bonnie. The first collection will be out very soon – we’ll keep you posted!

Of course, you can check out all of Bonnie and Neil’s latest work and you can also shop via their website and you can follow them on Instagram at @bonnieandneil.

This is our 22nd podcast episode – catch up on past episodes here!

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The Design Files acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which we work, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

First Nations artists, designers, makers, and creative business owners are encouraged to submit their projects for coverage on The Design Files. Please email