Tools of the Trade : Taë Schmeisser

By Brianna Read In this second instalment of Tools I have the great pleasure to introduce you to the inimitable Taë Schmeisser. A Melbourne based designer and jeweller, Taë’s creative background is as diverse as her jewellery collections – Taë has studied glass and ceramics and more recently engineering technology (jewellery) – her design collections utilise materials from glass through to felt. Diverse though her materials and methods of construction may be, a consistent thread throughout each range of designs is that of the body and more specifically objects to be worn on the body.

So you can understand why I chose to interview Taë about the tools of her trade – which tool could a designer like this not live without? The answer: a sketchbook and pencil. Of course! Taë also mentioned that she would be rather lost without her flexi drive drill but continued on to explain that the sketchbook is the constant player in her tool kit, she says “It’s not particularly ordered and there is a whole lot of chicken scrawl, torn out pages of magazines, photos, embarrassing and impractical ideas but it’s where it all starts.”

As a designer ever ready to embrace a new material, Taë mentions the importance of the material informing the tools. She says that with the development process of every collection the ideas have to work their way around the materials chosen. For her most recent collection, titled Architexture (launched this month under the label Bëuy), a range of wearable works of art have been created using German wool felt and metal. The results are quite simply striking.

With a genuine love of exploring new territory this is reflected in her choice of favoured tool – it is the point where the working through of an idea begins. The sketchbook is the ‘this is where I want to go’ part of the design process. Taë calls it ‘tumbleweeding’, in reference to the action of an idea rolling around in the head of the designer.

On the horizon she is looking toward a collection which returns to one of her early loves – glass; but she is certainly not traversing old ground. Always up for a design challenge, her designs are incorporating elastic, glass and metal. I for one cannot wait to see the fruits of that adventure…

Architexture by is available online at and in store at The Queensland Art Gallery of Modern Art Shop.

Brianna Read is a designer-maker based in Melbourne. Her knitwear label Jack of Diamonds Knits employs traditional hand-made techniques in combination with machine knit technologies. Brianna’s multi-faceted creative practice encompasses design, production, works for exhibition and machine knitting workshops.