Wool of Many Colours has developed from my own experience and growth, which hasn't followed a recognisable pattern.
Career of many threads
Following a completion of Textiles and Fine Art Diplomas I qualified as a teacher for these subjects, while teaching at various further education colleges I began a MSc Museum Studies.
My teaching posts allowed me to introduce and encourage my students' appreciation and interpretation of art and fashion history, while my research on the MSc led me to complete a second masters in The Conservation of Decorative Surfaces.
I became passionate about the preservation of the historical objects which inspire many students, artists and crafters. I wanted to be involved in the care management of these objects.
The research I undertook on this masters encouraged me to focus on the preservation of fashion related accessories.
I recently completed a PhD in Archaeology and Anthropology. The research (supported by several museums in the UK, Washington, Brussels, France and Oslo) on this doctorate programme enabled me to focus on the deterioration of a broad range of materials employed within the fashion and decorative arts over a hundred year period.
Whilst my primary practise is as a craft maker, I have respect and concern for the natural environment - in particular the effects of textiles and the decorative arts waste and by products sector has on nature. Additionally I am interested in the preservation of contemporary works given my knowledge of how vulnerable some materials are to deterioration.
Authentic and pure
The journeys which the various postgraduate and doctorate research has lead me to be innovative and use natural, pure materials in new creative ways. Some of my creations such as the incense range stems from a concern of the synthetic materials employed in many incense today and the possible side effects on inhaling such materials.
I challenge myself to use raw materials in a manner which my research indicates has been overlooked. I also want to limit my carbon footprint where possible by creating from the materials which are immediately available in my surroundings.
In terms of the textiles creations offered within the Wool of Many Colours Range, I approach these as though they are paintings. When I create a finished piece, each knit or sewing stitch is applied to result in a product which is unique and individual.
My work combines colours, shapes and texture to form movements and shades within the constructed piece.
I do not view knitted items as clothing but rather as three dimensional abstracted pieces. I want each piece to reflect my experiences and growth as a creative individual.