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Artist Uses NZ Blinds' Custom-Printed Roller Blinds
3 November 2014
Artist Uses NZ Blinds' Custom-Printed Roller Blinds

When artist Jan Simmons wanted to put the finishing touches to an architect’s house on Auckland’s eastern beaches, she found everything she needed by working with NZ Blinds.

Her brief from the customer was a little different to her usual commissions: to use her art to decorate a rollerblind for a well-used servery window in the kitchen.

Jan’s company Eve Designs usually works with textile prints on cushions and lampshades, and the rollerblind was a new venture. “The client has some of my Red Shed cushions and this is where they got the idea to commission the design for a featured blind in their kitchen, which had recently been renovated,” Jan says. “I was having a bit of a problem because I have someone who hand-makes everything for me in New Zealand from local materials but I hadn’t made a blind before. “I had looked at another company but it was going to be quite a complicated process.

” Once the client had chosen Jan’s “Red Shed” design, she approached NZ Blinds about the creative process and realised that their online store for designer rollerblinds offered a quick and easy method to get the job done.

“NZ Blinds obviously knew what they were doing and were happy to give it a go,” Jan says. “The whole process took a couple of weeks to all happen. I already had the file with the design on it which NZ Blinds used, then we tweaked it a bit. The client wanted a couple of lines taken out of the design to create a little more space and they did that straight away.

“I must admit I was a little worried how it would turn out because I hadn’t done it before but I was very impressed with the quality of the finished product and the way NZ Blinds worked – it was a very streamlined process.”

The blind is now fitted in the client’s kitchen over a glass window which doubles as a servery on to an outdoors area, meaning that the patterned top can still be viewed from indoors if it’s rolled up but it works perfectly as a shade behind the sink when rolled down.

“It is a feature blind with surrounding blinds in plain black, which balances the feature blind nicely,” Jan says.

“There is a lot of glass in the kitchen area with a corner of windows butted up against each other, which light the blind nicely and shows off the colours.

” NZ Blinds  says there was a bit of “to-ing and fro-ing” to make sure Jan’s client got exactly the design they wanted, but once that was complete, the creation of the blind was no different to normal. “It’s a great way to give artists an opportunity to display their art in a different way – to be able to put it in a practical situation,” they say. “I like the way artists think and the way they look at life differently. It’s good for us to be able to build a relationship with someone like Jan to give customers a different option when it comes to choosing a blind.”

And now Jan and NZ Blinds have struck up this partnership, it seems there may be more commissions on the horizon.

Jan has a masters degree in visual arts from Unitec in Auckland and worked as a secondary school teacher in Waitakere and Kaipara colleges before setting up Eve Designs in 2010. She’s been exhibiting her art for 19 years and has a huge pool of work from which she draws her designs. “All my designs come from original paintings, so I’m not going to run out of designs any time soon.” She says she comes from a family of artists and architects so making the transition from the watercolours based on natural motifs on which her masters degree was based, to the more practical applications of Eve Designs was simple.

“I feel like it’s really gaining ground now and I’m getting somewhere. I really have quite a passion for interiors and being able to work with NZ Blinds gives me another way to work with my art.”

Jan’s latest venture is a pop-up shop on Auckland’s stylish Ponsonby Rd, where customers will be able to see her full range of designs and decide how they can be used on cushions, lampshades and blinds.

The temporary store will be at 62 Ponsonby Road from November 1 until Christmas Eve, making it the perfect opportunity to find a unique piece of practical art for you or your home thanks to Jan Simmons and NZ Blinds.

For more information on Jan’s work or to be able to drop her a line about a potential commission, go to to check out her range of designs. Or if you’re an artist or interior designer interested in using NZ Blinds to create a unique range email us at