My career path has been a pretty unconventional and eclectic one. At 15 I left school and got a job in a jigsaw puzzle factory. The roles that followed varied from apprentice jeweller, to barista and finance director of a literary agency – to mention just a few. I was always interested in craft and working with my hands though, so even when my day job involved crunching numbers, I spent my free time making things.
Eventually I took the leap from creating things in my spare time to practising a craft full-time; by the time I learnt to weave in 2015, I had been running my own furniture upholstery business for 4 years. That career had been born out of a love of textiles, and initially I thought I would weave fabric to use in my upholstery practice. I quickly became side tracked however, as my explorations of the loom led me to discover rug weaving. I was soon obsessed and never did get around to weaving any upholstery fabric. Within a year I had closed my upholstery business and become a full-time weaver.
I have two looms that I weave on, a Kentish floor loom that I bought when I first started weaving, and that I keep in my home studio in Lambeth, South London, and a broad loom that I purchased from an old mill in Cheshire, that is in a workshop just down the road, in Battersea. The Kentish loom will weave to a width of about 90cm and the broad loom to about 120cm.
When I first started weaving I used whatever yarns I could find, in whatever colours were commercially available to me. But over time, as my practice evolved, I found I wasn’t able to find the shades required to create the rugs I wanted to make.
Rather than compromise on design, I started dyeing the yarns I use in order to achieve the exact colours and tonal gradations I need for each piece. This has become an integral part of my practice.
One of my fade rugs may require as many as 30 shades of yarn to be dyed in order that the movement of colour is as imperceptible as possible. These are then gradually woven into the rug in turn to achieve the desired effect.It can take a degree of experimentation to get the exact colours desired, and quite often yarns will need to be dyed with an under-dye, and then again with a top colour in order to achieve the depths of colour and nuanced shades needed.
For a standard sized rug (approx. 90cm x 145cm), the process of dyeing the yarn, weaving, and then finishing the edges can take over 40 hours.
Commissioning a rug
All of the designs featured within the gallery and shop pages of this site can be made to order is any size or colour. Designs can also be adapted to some degree. Prices for bespoke rugs start at £750.00 for a standard sized rug and increase depending on the size, complexity of design, materials used and dyeing techniques required.
Please use the contact page for any enquiries about specific prices or should you have any questions about commissioning a piece of work.