Friday, 18 September 2015

Kirstie's Handmade Fair Featured Designer TWIG

TWIG Interview and Featured Seller at Kirsties Handmade Fair Hampton Court Palace

1. Tell us a little bit about yourself and your creative background

Since I can remember I've always been drawn to colour - as I child I remember carefully
blending colouring crayons to carefully create a shades that were just ʻrightʼ. So my
connection with colour has been with me a while, I just adore the way they can change a
mood and enhance a feeling - itʼs this fascination that led me to become a designer.

2. Did you go to university to study textile design?

I studied textile design at Leeds University and my true understanding of colour really
blossomed there. I developed my own style and became confident creating with
unexpected colour combinations.

3. What was it that drew you to lambswool and working with woolen fabrics?

After working as buyer at Laura Ashley within the Home Department I had always planned
to create my own range. I adore tactile fabrics and aim to create a cosy and luxurious feel
with my products and lambswool was a natural choice for me.

4. What would you say are the best qualities about pure lambswool?

It’s wonderful! It’s natural, very warm and incredibly soft. I could ask for anything more
from our lambswool.

5. Have you ever worked with other types of wool?

I only ever use 100% lambswool, the pure quality and softness it produces are perfect for
my range.
6. What would you say most inspires your designs?

Colour is my unlimited source of inspiration.

7. You have a very sumptuous and distinctive colour palette that is very easy on the eye,
what motivates and inspires your colour choices?

I find colour combinations so invigorating and take inspiration from colour palettes in
nature, the amazing architectural shades I see on my travels to distinctive prints on vintage

8. You work with a small family run mill to produce your lambswool products, how
important was it to you to use a local company and what were the deciding factors in
choosing your this firm.

We work with a wonderful Mill in Ireland to weave our lovely lambswool. Their traditions go
back hundreds of years and it's the time they take that really perfects our products. That's
what's important to me, I want our customers to receive a piece that's being cared for.

9. One of my personal favourite product ranges is the Lottie Citrus range, could you
explain your inspiration and drive behind this sumptuous and classic range?

Ah thank you - Lottie Citrus is one of our most loved collections. Itʼs got a striking palette
developed with mid turquoise, Ivory, Citrus, dark plum and teal. I was inspired by coastal
walks through sand dunes - the heathery tones of sea grasses amidst the soft sand makes
for a beautiful colourway.

10.Would you say that the demand for pure woollen and UK based woollen products is
increasing and what changes have you noticed in the current woollen market place?

I can certainly say that there is a distinct need for quality products that are beautifully
made. The domestic market is booming as customers look for products that are made close
to home but we ship worldwide and there is a real demand for UK designed and made
goods - there is a intrinsic link between Britain and quality design and we’re proud to be
part of that heritage.

11. Do you have any new product ranges in the pipeline at the moment that you’re working

I'm busy working on some new design collaborations with some exciting brands, plus
getting ready to launch our new Autumn collection which I'm really excited about.

12.. When you create a new design, what methods or design process do you follow.

Once I have a colour palette in mind, I translate that to a design board - experimenting with
designs and layouts. Once a design is achieved I then have to ensure we can create that
colour mix in our lambswool. I work closely with our millers to create the hues we need to
get the look I have designed. It takes time and effort but is worth it when you see the
sumptuous shades produced. Nothing beats the thrill of seeing that first weave in a new
colour way!

13. Is there an average time frame that you work to, when creating new designs.

Iʼm always developing but when working with clients on collaborations, it usually takes a
few months.

14.What are your 3 most favorite of your designs? (Please supply 3 images of your work)

I have a connection to all of my designs but I’m so pleased with our new collection - Eloise
Sorbet, Eloise Quinel and Finn Storm. The colours are just so soothing and very on trend
this season.

15.Do you have any upcoming events that people can come and see your work and meet
you in person?

We're heading back to New York in August for NYNOW a designer interiors show which is
always a big event for us and we'll be at Kirstie Allsopp's Handmade Fair at Hampton
Court too - so Autumn is going to be a busy time for us.

16. Please tell us where we can find you online and how to get in touch with you.


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