Last week I took delivery of my first batch of mill woven scarves. This has been a long time coming, and it has surprised me just how long it has taken for me to get here.
I started to design the collection at the very beginning of 2017. The idea had been floating around my head since 2015 when I spent time in St Ives and picked up some pebbles and mussel shells after being fascinated by the colour changes. A few months later I visited the National Trust beach in Dunwich. The pebble beach was a mixture of brick red and ochre mixed in with the indigo of flint, and again, I went home with a pocket full of pebbles.
In January 2017 I started a sketchbook without really knowing where this project would take me. I photographed the pebbles I had brought home and began to sketch out the details that I saw in each one. Soon afterwards I visited Whitstable for the day and fell in love with the beach huts on the seafront. I knew that the combination of textures taken from the pebbles mixed with the more graphic shapes and colours of the huts would be a perfect juxtaposition of ideas.
I have always wanted to work with a mill to get my woven textiles made up into products. Although I love weaving, my heart lies with designing. Time spent testing new colours, fibres and techniques always inspires me, and I struggle to produce great lengths of fabrics on my loom. This is one of the reasons my handwoven products will always be unique.
The first iterations of this project were in silk. I worked with a mill to reproduce some of my handwoven fabrics, but unfortunately, we were only able to produce a short run. This is where the fabric I use to make the eye masks comes from. The mill I developed the silk with suggested the Bristol Weaving Mill and, after a process of redeveloping the silk fabrics to wool, I made contact, and they agreed to sample my new merino scarves.
I couldn’t be happier with the results of the scarves that arrived this week. It is a fantastic feeling to see all of your hard work in physical form, and Bristol Weaving Mill has been an absolute pleasure to work with. I am taking part in plenty of markets and shows (full list below), giving you the opportunity to see and feel them too. The merino is so soft and snuggly that I am wishing this Indian summer away so I can wear mine. I’ve always been an Autumn girl. In the meantime, head over to my shop to see the goods yourself.
29th September - Muswell Hill Creatives Market, St James Square, Muswell Hill. 10.30am-5.00pm.
18th - 21st October - Made London, One Marylebone, NW1 4AQ
2nd - 4th November - Handmade in Highgate, 11 South Grove, London, N6 6BS
17th - 18th November - The Assembly Market, Abney Hall, Stoke Newington, N16 0AS
24th November - Muswell Hill Creatives Market, St James Square, Muswell Hill. 10.30am-5.00pm.
1st December - Local Makers Market, Christchurch Hall, Wanstead, E11 2SW