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REGISTER OF KNITTING ARTISTS


Below is a current list of Knitting Artists.

Click on any name to view images and read about their work. You will also find a contact email address at the end of each piece.

Click on any image to view full size


Guidelines:

Anyone living in the UK can apply to be included on our Knitting Artists page. You need to supply an artist’s statement and up to four images of your own designs. You should have had your work exhibited or be writing for magazines or be a 'Designer-Maker'. To help promote your own work you may be invited to take workshops during National Knitting Week and at other knitting events. We are often approached by Galleries who are looking for knitters to exhibit their work with them.

To send us details, please click on the 'contact us' link in the menu at the top


Max Alexander London

Alison Anderson Stirling, Scotland

Sally Bobyk Oxford

Patricia Bown Stockport

Sian Brown Hastings

Susan Burns Essex

Sophie Buckley Gloucestershire

Sonji Clayton Hertfordshire

FaceKnits (Amanda Puleston) Neath, Wales

Françoise Dupré London

Alison Ellen Surrey

Pauline Fitzpatrick Burton On Trent

Wendy Freebourne, Bath

Jane Glennie Ascot, Berkshire

Rachel Gomme London

Vicky Gordon Hornsea, Yorkshire

Sarah Green Lincolnshire

Inga Hamilton Northern Ireland

Lorna Hamilton-Brown East Sussex

Ali Hogg Northern Ireland

Kate Jenkins Brighton

Rachel John Gloucestershire

Susie Johns London

Sasha Kagan Powys

Chia-Shan Lee London

Ruth Lee Cumbria

Aude Marie London

Rachel Massey Lincolnshire

Rachael Matthews London

Nicki Merrall Leicestershire

Kerry Mosley Yorkshire

Claire Montgomerie London

Deirdre Nelson Glasgow

Liz Padgham-Major East Sussex

Naomi Paul London

Aiste Petra London

Hook & Scumble (Steph Phillips) Bedford

Steve Plummer Lancashire

Melanie Porter London

Celia Pym London

Louisette Rasoloniana Middlesex

Anna Richardson London

Freddie Robins London

Lynn Gray Ross Isle of Arran

Lynne Rowe Congleton, Cheshire

PurpleClaire Textiles (Claire Russell) London

Biddy Rychnovsky Norfolk

Clare Sams London

Sally Spinks London

Jo Storie Berwickshire

Libby Summers Lincolnshire

Jemma Sykes London

Ildiko Szabo Liverpool

Sharon Taylor Suffolk

Rita Taylor Norfolk

Hazel Tindall Shetland

Amy Twigger Holroyd Herefordshire

Emma Vining Guildford

Shane Waltener London

Jane Walters Derby

Rodica Watkins Norwich

Donna Wilson London

Woolley Wormhead (Ruth Paisley) London

Woolly Buddha (Susan Scarre) Leeds

 


Max Alexander

Learning to Knit
Benoît Abeille
A Job for a Bear
Knitters Earrings

Statement:

I took up knitting while I was studying sculpture at Camberwell College of Arts and I've never looked back. Almost everything I do now is related to yarn in some way. From stop-motion animation to sculpture to jewellery it's all about the knitting. When animating I love bringing my creatures to life, it's incredibly satisfying to give feelings and emotion to simple pieces of knitting. The characters tend to know what they want to get up to once they get in front of a camera. They are rarely interested in following any plans I have for
them! My knitimations won Best Animation at The National Student Film Festival in 2007 and 2008 as also Best Music Video in 2008.

My sculptural work often feature slightly disturbing undertones. By bringing a dark side to wool I've moved into the realm of Horror Knitting. Cuddly blood and gore is rarely scary but often disconcerting. In April 2009 I decided it was time to show my yarn love through jewellery. I made myself a pair of earrings featuring a tiny pair of knitting needles with a little bit of my hand dyed yarn. Then I wanted them in another colour and another and before I knew it I had a whole range of jewellery for the fashionable knitter.

Click here to contact Max

Click here for Max's website

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Alison Anderson

Jungle Walk
Kelida
Nina Bonita
Tripitaka

Statement:

"I first started knitting when I was a little girl... knitting scarves for my dollies! Although I have dipped in and out of many crafts since then, knitting remains a firm favourite. It is an absolute delight to work with the wonderful range of textured yarns available these days.
I hand knit bags mainly in pure wool but with a few choice synthetic yarns for added texture. Next I ‘felt’ the bags for extra body and durability, and finally I line each with a complimentary fabric. Every bag is unique.
The majority of my bags are inspired by personal travel experiences. I base my colour palette on photographs I have taken, and use a variety of yarns to mimic the textures. Indeed, I attempt to recreate the overall ‘feel’ of my photo in the bag. Every bag from my “Chit Chat” range comes with a label outlining the story behind its creation and a copy of the photo that inspired it.
I recently held an exhibition (“Yowes for You”) at the Stirling Smith Museum and Art Galleries. I have also had an article published in the newly launched “Made in Scotland” magazine."

Click here to contact Alison

Click here for Alison's website

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Sally Bobyk

 
       

Statement:

"Sally's parents were Utopian Socialists whose ethos was everything is made by hand. They may have been unconventional but they were an extremely talented group so she was able to card, spin, weave and knit at an early age, so it is as natural to her as walking and running. She went to art college in the 1960s when art and design were at its most progressive, prior to it being absorbed into the university system, where she gained a degree in fashion (heavily frowned upon by her parents). She then became a designer for high street stores such as Liberties and House of Fraser. Creatively it was very boring so she picked up the needles again to create texture, form and patterns. From there it was a short step to working with more radical designers and having her own label which was exported to Italy, Japan as well as supplying leading London boutiques. Articles about her work were in the Japanese Elle magazine. Sally gets regular orders from movie people attending the Cannes Film Festival. She is passionate about knitting and has worked with everything from fishing line, titanium, paper, rope to the finest quality silks and cashmere. Her design is contemporary cutting edge and she sees no reason why it should be confined to cold weather and the countryside."

Click here to contact Sally

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Patricia Bown

Knitted Installation
Knitted urchins
Crocheted Chokers
Crocheted Chokers

Statement:

I learned to knit at the age of 7yrs but it was only when I did a textiles degree, as a mature student, I began to appreciate the versatility of textile crafts. I now specialise in using the traditional techniques of crochet, feltmaking and knitting to create tactile contemporary art pieces for exhibition, installation, bespoke fashion accessories and interior design. My latest work centres on the versatility of recyclable and discarded materials, investigating how they can be incorporated to create decorative and functional pieces.
The main inspiration and starting point for my work comes from nature. By experimenting with manipulation and construction I use yarns and fibres to interpret texture, form and the ever changing colours of the seasons, producing sculptural pieces which can cross the boundary between art and craft.   
As a qualified Occupational Therapist I am particularly interested in the therapeutic uses of arts and crafts, appreciating the positive influence they can have on physical and mental wellbeing. My wide range of experience allows me the opportunity to work with individuals, fellow artists and community groups on solo and group projects and workshops, including Arts for Health programmes.

Click here to contact Patricia

Click here to view more of Patricia's work

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Sian Brown

Bobble Bag, 'Knit Today'
Bed Jacket, 'Knitting'
Frilled Jumper, 'Rooster'
Seaside Fish Throw, 'Knit Today'

Statement:Updated February 2011

I originally did a BA in Fashion / Textiles at Cheltenham. I have worked as a freelance knitwear designer for a number of years, based first in London and now on the Sussex Coast. I have designed for various companies supplying the major high street retailers, and smaller independent companies, both hand and machine knits. I also taught knitwear design at London College of Fashion.
I now design handknits for magazines, and yarn companies wishing to add pattern back up for their yarns.
I am also working on a first book of home knits for GMC.
I work with a pattern writer and team of experienced knitters also able to crochet. I design womenswear, menswear, childrenswear, accessories and home knits, producing designs, patterns and first samples.

Click here to contact Sian

Click here to view more of Sian's work

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Sophie Buckley

       

Statement:

I was taught to knit by hand and machine by my Grandma and Mum at a young age. After working in wood, silver and ceramics, I came back to fibres during my degree in Contemporary Crafts at Falmouth University.

Ocean life and the patterns governing natural growth inform my work. Crochet techniques allow me to work in a way which captures an element of this, gradually changing as it grows, layer building upon layer. I make pieces instinctively, each one informs the next, and shapes develop and evolve over time.

Now based in a gorgeous studio shared by a textiles co-operative at Ruskin Mill in Gloucestershire, I aim to use different materials and techniques in my work to explore these ideas further, with a focus on local, natural materials such as willow and raw fleece, and plant dyeing.

Click here to contact Sophie

Click here for Sophie's website

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Susan Burns

Square Elaine
Knitted Roses
Purple Square
Dreamy Jade

Statement:

I don’t remember learning to knit. I came from a time when every one knitted, made clothes and did needlework. Those who couldn’t were taught in schools. My mother knitted, so did my grand-mother and I just continued the tradition, from making doll clothes onto fashion items. I knitted mainly for myself but also did items that I sold, sometimes because the jumper I was wearing was liked! Other times I was asked to make a special item mainly because it couldn’t be bought in store. At this time I was beginning to enjoy adapting patterns.

Time has moved on and I now find myself making jewellery. My first love was using wire to shape, twist into new and exciting pieces. I just love anything that has colour and texture whether old or new. But it is all about making some thing attractive and wearable. About a year ago I discovered knitting with wire. I first tried French knitting but now I mainly use two needles and wire. I started off using very fine needles which have helped to make some very fine almost lace effects.

As a way to put my work out on display for the public to see, I decided to hold an exhibition at Barleylands in March 2012. This would be in a textile environment. So I wanted to display jewellery that is more in keeping with this style. The knitting was a great idea as I could continue to make jewellery and also try some crochet ideas. Before I start any design I tend to think about ideas and draw them. The first necklace really came from knitting a square and this idea just grew and developed. Once finished I could see a way of adding beads which has led onto other shapes including flowers. The exhibition has taught me many things including that there is a place for wire knitting. It can have a modern feel which I wish to continue sharing with other people by giving talks and learning the skills through running workshops.

Click here to contact Susan

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Sonji Clayton

Backwing Top
Boob Tube And Mini Skirt
Cabled Top With Tassels
Top Bag and Hat

Statement:

Background: My mother taught me to knit, crotchet and hand sew when I was in primary school, as I got older I fell in love with the fashion industry strongly influenced and inspired by shows such as The Clothes Show, Soul Train and designers such as, Vivian Westwood and Yohji Yamamoto. Over the years I had been designing/knitting made to order garments for private clients, which encouraged me to go back and pursue a career in design. Finally after attending a cultural exhibition in October 2004 the colours and textures of the ethnic fabrics used to create an African village inspired me to officially produce a range of luxury handmade knitwear and accessories through my label, Eclectic Mix. From 2006 - 2010 I sold my handcrafted accessories and clothing at the Fashion Enter Boutique, Crowndale Centre, Croydon, which is owned by the largest online portal for fashion designers & manufacturers, Fashion Capital. In Autumn 2011 I launched my on-line boutique to sell my self-published knitting & crochet patterns, these will be sold alongside my new range of handcrafted accessories to be sold retail and wholesale from Autumn 2012.

Freelance Work & Tutoring: My designs are heavily influenced by yarn texture and simple symmetrical shapes, like squares and rectangles. I have received commissions from stylists as far away as New York . On March 17th 2005, I was part of a selected group of new designers who took part in Alternative Fashion Week, sponsored by Swatch. Since then I have had the opportunity to be commissioned to design swatches for a textile company selling designs to international retail/fashion companies, as well as my designs being utilised in editorial fashion features. My experience within knit design genres is constantly evolving. In 2009 my biography and designs were featured in a full page article in Lets Knit Magazine about my life as a knitwear designer. After being approached by various magazines and yarn companies, since 2011 I have started to create a range of commercial designs to be submitted to clients, including 'Lets Knit Magazine' to be published as knitting patterns this is an area which I am consciously, working on expanding. Alongside my design work, I am also an Associate Lecturer/NVQ Assessor, within Further Education and a creative business coach within the private sector. In March 2012 I taught a Knitwear Design Workshop at the Stitch & Craft Show, Olympia.

Graduate: New Entrepreneur Scolarship Programme: From April 2004 until May 2005, I attended the New Entrepreneur Scholarship Programme, (NES) partnered by amongst others, The Princes Trust, Hackney Business Venture Enterprise and University of East London and University of Westminster. On production of my completed business plan on the 11th May 2005, I was awarded a business start-up grant and a New Entrepreneur Business Certificate, certified by University of East London & The Association of Business Schools.

Artistic Influences in Knit: I like to produce collections that are style led, yet fashion conscious an eclectic mix, of vibrant colours and textures, focusing on outside seams and combinations of simple stitch patterns to create texture, hence the name, Eclectic Mix. Utilising blended or pure wool yarns and at times fabric, to create a luxury easily wearable eclectic mix of clothing and accessories. My current influences are Sonia Rykiel, Missoni and handmade vintage patterns from the 40's, 60's and 70's. These influences inspire me to design items that are both able to capture the qualities of the texture and colour of yarn in a very modern and innovative way. The vintage patterns/styles I source, reflect and stretch the versatility of handmade techniques on an extremely practical yet what seems an impossibly stylistic level, and this is what I try to capture within my own collection. I take pride in the fact that my garments are produced by UK based knitters and manufacturers.

Click here to contact Sonji

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Françoise Dupré

Project realised at the Irish Museum of Modern Art while on the Artists' Work Programme Dublin. French knitting, four needle knitting, Irish knitting stitches and digital images
Installation part of solo exhibition Parterres at the Charles Darwin University Gallery, Darwin, NT, Australia. French knitting braids, wool, polyamid yarn, cable ties
Wall installation for solo exhibition at The Gallery, Stratford-Upon-Avon, England Wool, mirrors, pins, lenses, feather, lycra, hair clips and glitter 

Project realised at the Crafts Council for touring exhibition Knit 2 Together New Concept in Knitting with Somali Women's group. French knitting, wire, yarn

Statement:

Underpinning my practice is my concern with the nature of the creative process and the condition and location of art production.  Inspired by Michel de Certeau's concept of the art of making in the everyday, my work aims to celebrate the vernacular and creative skills that are invisible, marginal or being lost through migration, socio-economic changes and globalisation.  I am interested  in the concepts of object détourné, hybridity and the practice of cultural resistance.  These issues have and will bring me to work in cross-cultural and transnational contexts where the practice of making objects continues to be an integral part of one's sense of identity.My practice includes a wide range of making materials and processes including knitting and stitching and digital imaging.  I am particularly interested in developing a  practice that brings together local-global concerns and traditional-innovative skills.  My practice is also located in a wide range of contexts including public and non-art spaces.With my current research project here and there I aim to develop a  new model of art practice that explores the complexity inherent to transnational experience and identity.  This will be achieved through a series of context-based and collaborative art making projects that bring together artist and communities in meaningful and ethical creative exchanges. In 2000 I began spool knitting (French knitting) exploring the simplicity and universality of the technique and its association with home crafts and childhood.  I have since realised a large number of French knitted installations for solo exhibitions (les merveilles de Françoise Dupré, Can'Art, Toulouse, France 2002; French knitting, the gallery, Stratford-upon-Avon, England 2003; parterres, Charles Darwin University Gallery, Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia 2004) and for group exhibitions (Knit 2 Together Concepts in Knitting, Crafts Council, England 2005-06; Art in Romney Marsh, Ivychurch, England 2004).The French knitting technique is simple to learn or relearn, it is adaptable and can be used with other knitting and making techniques to create transcultural art work.  French knitting crosses over social and cultural boundaries as well as age groups and as a group activity it has been an ideal means through which I have been able to develop collaborative practice that engages with communities and places.  So far I have realised two projects: snáth nasc, de fil en aiguille… while artist in residence at the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, Ireland 2003-04 and Fujaan  for the Crafts Council exhibition Knit 2 Together Concepts in Knitting England 2005. The knitted works I create become part of installations which often include video work and/or stills prints.   I consider the digital work an other kind of way of engaging with the process of knitting.  The video here and there, french knitting, Brixton  made in 2003 explores the solitary, meditative and performative aspects of knitting while the series of digital images, in snáth nasc, de fil en aiguille…  and for Fujaan souvenir pack, emphasis the intersubjective engagement with participants. (here and there, french knitting, Brixtonwill be shown in Blurring the Boundaries: Fashion Design Innovation in Contemporary Knitting  group exhibition at the Fairfield City Museum and Gallery, Sydney, Australia 2006)

Click here to contact Francoise

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Alison Ellen

       

Statement:

Having trained in textile design and worked in textiles while bringing up her family, Alison began designing and making handknitwear in the 1980s.
Teaching in art college, then short courses at West Dean College and with textile groups provoked research into knitting history and exploring technique further, leading to three books published, 'The Handknitters' Design Book' in 1992, 'Handknitting, New Directions' 2002, and 'Knitting, Colour, Structure and Design' in 2011.

Her main interest is in constructing garments by knitting in different directions, and finding stitches that manipulate the fabric and create textures. These techniques allow her to design wearable, varied shapes, led by the natural inclination of the stitches. She enjoys dyeing her yarns for added patterning and richness of colour.

She sells her work through selected fairs and craft galleries, and having direct contact with her customers has made a major contribution to her approach in designing for different body-shapes.

Click here to contact Alison

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FaceKnits (Amanda Puleston)

Down the road
3 bicycles
95th Birthday
Sean in the woods

Statement:

I have knitted throughout my life and am currently obsessed with knitting images developed from photographs I have taken. These are all from the family album, taken over the years. They often feature my growing family, people close to me, my garden and memorable places.
None of the yarns used are bought specially, but are all collected as oddments and unwanted stock. This came about after my mother died and I inherited a trunk full of wool oddments, all packaged in assorted bags, some tangled together, which took me right back as far as my childhood jumpers and cardigans. (She never threw anything away, having lived through the “make do and mend” times of the World War 2.)
Just like wool oddments, photos trigger memories, and I aim to capture an expression, an attitude or moment in time, and make the viewer smile, maybe with recognitions of their own. Each split second portrayed in an image invokes many more memories surrounding the event, and over the weeks it takes me to develop and knit the image, these become embedded in the work.
I like to experiment with colour and texture, and mix yarns like paint to create an illusion of light, shade and vibrancy. Even though traditional knitting methods are used, the free use of yarns creates fluidity in constructing a picture.

Click here to contact Amanda

Click here for website

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Pauline Fitzpatrick

Beaded Freeform Crocheted Cuffs
Freeform Crocheted Jacket
Freeform Crocheted Garden Hanging
Freeform Silk Bracelet

Statement:

I design and make crochet accessories - jewellery, bags, scarves and hats, and one of a kind freeform crochet wallhangings and garments. The jewellery is worked in bead crochet using silk and/or cotton with glass beads. The bags, hats and scarves are worked in different types of crochet including freeform, using a variety of yarns. Inspiration for the jewellery and accessories comes from the wide variety of yarns and beads now available, the natural world and the seasons provides the inspiration for garments and wallhangings. I usually start out with a general idea for the piece I`m making, which evolves during the working process. This is particularly true with freeform crochet, where different yarns can be added as the piece progresses. I am fascinated by colour and texture, particularly the way colours are affected when placed next to each other. I hope that in the future crochet will be seen to realise it's full potential.
I have designed for Knitting magazine, Yarn Forward Magazine, Reader`s Digest (USA), Sirdar and King Cole and have taught crochet classes and workshops.  My work has been exhibited in various places in the UK and in the Scrumblers' Unite exhibition in Australia.

Click here to contact Pauline

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Wendy Freebourne

Butterfly Knit

Indian Summer

Partial View

Skyweb

Statement:

I grew up with the touch and feel of textiles, collecting scraps from the factory floors where my mother and aunts worked, and where I visited frequently to collect pieces for dolls clothes. I could knit, sew and crochet before I learned to read or write; and have been doing so most of my life. In the 1970s, I had a business called The Wendy House, designing whacky knitwear for West End stores, employing an army of home knitters in the suburbs of London. I gave this up to have children. I designed knitting and crochet patterns for magazines from 2006 to 2008.

I am excited by colour and texture, fabric and fibre. I use knitting and crochet in my textile art to illustrate inner and outer themes; often abstract. I love to invent and explore; and to mix and (mis)match, sometimes disparate, media and techniques, frequently using recycled materials. I knit with plastic carrier bags, combine papier maché with fibre, knitting with emulsion paints, distressed fabric with felted human hair and cat fur. Many of my pieces glow in the dark.

Click here to contact Wendy

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Jane Glennie

Seven Tyres
Trunks (where do I stand?)
Seven tyres (detail)
Stalks

Statement:

I have always been busy making things with a variety of textile crafts: knitting, stitching, spinning, felting and other constructive techniques. But  I have begun to understand that ‘things’ need not be practical but can simply be sculpture.
My work is wide-ranging, I explore thought processes and decision making that affect ourselves and our world. I ask myself why I make the choices I do and how I feel about things I encounter. My sources are ideas-based, and I am often influenced by discarded materials. It helps my conscience with the environmental impact of my work, but I also find it creatively freeing and inspiring to work with old and unloved materials. I am interested in exploring materials, scales and environments that are untypical of knitting.

Click here to contact Jane

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Rachel Gomme

‘A Year of Waiting: knitting at bus stops’
Rachel with her performance knitting of 'Ravel'
‘Knitting a Rothko: the ongoing work hangs unfinished’
‘Knitted Month #1: unravelled and reknitted for 31 days’

Statement:

My performance and installation work focuses on the embodied nature of being and how the experience of time and memory is stored and expressed in the body. I began using knitting in my performance practice in 2006, looking at how knitting can represent and materialise aspects of time and memory, through the creation of a 3-dimensional fabric from something linear. The repeated stitches are indicative of how small details or moments gradually build up into something larger; in contrast to many other artefacts, in most knitting the individual actions which go towards creating the object are still clearly evidnet in the finished piece, while the continuity of the yarn suggests how these details are part of a seamless whole. In performative knitting, particularly outdoors, I am also exploring how bringing this domestic, traditionally women's craft into a public space can influence perceptions of both the work and the space. My knitting performance work has been presented in London, Chester, Cumbria, Leicester, Nottingham, and in El Paso and Houston, Texas.

In 6-hour durational performance Ravel, first presented at Camberwell Arts Festival, I laid a line of yarn along a 5-km route through Camberwell, connecting places that in the past were related to water and other historical sites. I then retraced my steps, knitting up the yarn and incorporating small objects found along the way or given to me by viewers, as well as all the tangles and breaks the yarn had got itself into over the day. Versions of this piece have also been performed in Chester and El Paso, Texas.

The ongoing performance and textile project Knitting a Rothko explores time and labour, juxtaposing the cosy domesticity of knitting with monumental art-making. Over a series of performances, using largely recycled yarn, I knit to add to a large panel designed to echo the works of abstract painter Mark Rothko. After each performance, the piece is hung unfinished, yarn trailing from its edge, in the gallery where the performance has taken place.

In the cumulative performance project A Year of Waiting, from 1 January to 31 December 2010 I knitted each time I waited for public transport, adding to a long strip and changing colour on each occasion, marking the duration of each time and adding to the year's total of waiting. ‘The completed work is approximately 4.5 m long, and was shown in my recent solo exhibition at R-Space gallery in Lisburn, Northern Ireland

More recently I have been exploring the process of knitting, unravelling and reknitting, using the ‘memory’ of yarn as a metaphor for the memories that build up over a lifetime of repeated action and experience. In the ongoing series ‘Knitted Month’, I knit, unravel and reknit a panel of 31 stitches x 31 rows every day for a month, using various methods. In ‘Hour (for Penelope)’ I draw on the Greek myth of Penelope, who each night unravelled the weaving she had done in the day, holding back time so that she would not finish it before Odysseus returned home. In this durational performance, which lasts from 4 to 24 hours, I sit between two strips of knitting joined in the middle, knitting one side as the other unravels, and each hour turning to knit in the other direction so the same stretch of yarn is knitted over again.

In 2012 I also worked with over-60s dance group Age on Stage to create dance piece ‘Knit One, Twirl One’ using movement and memories linked to knitting.

Click here to contact Rachel

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Vicky Gordon

       

Statement:

I have been able to knit since my grandma taught me the basics as a small girl. Many years and lots of patience later I decided to take up textile design as a career move. It was a bold choice having been an IT Manager for 15 years. I wanted to get back to the creative side in me and do something tactile, creative and rewarding. Designing knitting patterns has not disappointed.

My creations are all small novelty items. I find patterns for toys are hugely popular and many knitters make for charity or as family gifts. As toy items are smaller than garments it makes them a simple choice for beginners and some school clubs have taken my patterns for their projects.

My patterns make knitting easier and more widely available by making instructions as simple as they can be and easy to understand. I have some very cute dolls, as well as mascots and the very popular pyjama cases. I am continually developing my range of new patterns at about two patterns per month and there is a good variety of complimentary items and they are helping the future generation of knitters learn the craft.

Click here to contact Vicky

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Sarah Green

Sarah and display of bags
     

Statement:

As a designer I am inspired by many things like, but I very much have a love of colour! I'm very inspired by Fashion designer Zandra Rhodes and throughout university I referred back to her work for motivation and even wrote my dissertation about her work. I love her use of colour and prints. Many of my knitted bags I embroider and Zandra Rhodes knitted circles print collection has influenced my designs. I've also made bags with knitted circles as decoration, which was inspired by painting by klimt.

Click here to contact Sarah

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Inga Hamilton

Crocheted Plastic Form
Pink and Green Wall Reef
Sea Swarm
Large Reef

Statement:

I was taught to spin, crochet, knit and sew as a young girl by various friends and family members, but let all of these skills lapse as adult life took over. It's only now in my mid thirties, that I've come back to them and they've literally taken over my life and my home.

I work only with discarded materials; yarns and laces found in charity shops; plastics hoaked from rubbish bins; carrier bags begged from friends; and even foam and bubble wrap plundered from skips. I love to take something that no one else wants and give it a new lease of life; turning it into a thing of beauty and keeping it from landfill.

Most of my time is taken up by coral reef project for the Institute For Figuring based in Los Angeles. This project, to highlight the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, has lead my crocheted, woven, hand and machine-knitted, felted and sculpted reef dwellers to be included in the IFF's Chicago (Oct 2007) and LA (Jan 2008) NYU, Broadway, New York (April 2008) Hayward Gallery, London (summer 2008 tba), LACE, LA (late 2008 tba) exhibtions. As well as this I'm overjoyed to be taking part in the International Fibre Collaborative's wrapping of a gas station, Syracuse NY (April 2008)

Besides the recycling aspect of my work, which I'm glad to say is capturing the public's attention, I adore investigating the social and theraputic aspect of handicrafts and I am currently in the process of setting up a project for a local hospital's clinic waiting room, where I recently found myself spending far too much time for my own boredon threshold.

Inga Hamilton update

 
Spinning on a new wheel at Shiplake College residency
Giant Crocheting By Hand
Crocheted Pebble Rug
 

Fibre Activist, Inga Hamilton, better known as Rockpool Candy, pops up in the strangest of places. She may be encouraging random acts of textile kindness in a lounge-room installation on the streets of Belfast; Using textile graffiti to adorn an underground prison cell in the middle of Rome; Cor Blimey Crocheting! a giant bacteria in front of the Minister for Culture in Leigh; Or simply using neolithic and 12th Century principles to build looms and spinning wheels from branches and junk in an English Orchard.

No matter where her current fibre-based adventure may be, she'll be attempting to make something beautiful, to engage, and to challenge the onlooker to reconsider their lost connection with textiles.With her unusual brand of natural fibre ornamentation, her latest sculptures involve bone wrapping, leaf stencils and creating folklore in upstate New York in October 09.Halloween 09 will see her working alongside the Crochet Liberation Front, calling together spinners and crocheters to create a giant spider's web that will be dragged through an Oregon river to felt it. And December 09 brings a month-long art residency in Tampa Florida, exploring her experimental fibre techniques. Her US tour will kick off with her Let Me Ease Your Day fibre movement at Chicago's Yarn Con. Not content with full-time fibre activism, Inga also designs crochet patterns, such as for her pebble rug, using her own hand-scoured, dyed and spun yarns. Rockpool candy's crocheted viruses installation showed at the Turnpike Gallery, Leigh 09.

Click here to contact Inga

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Lorna Hamilton-Brown

Two Faced Jumper (Front)
Two Faced Jumper (Back)
OMG Hanging
Portraits: Kaffe Fassett

Statement:

Lorna is an accomplished artist and knitwear designer. Through her artwork she likes to challenge people's perception of knitting as a contemporary art form. Her work is full of social comment, and she has been referred to as the Banksy of knitting. She also works with illustration and dabbles in digital art. Her latest exhibit was titled: Two Faced Jumper: "The garment depicts how oftentimes what young people say face to face can be very different from what they say behind peoples backs or anonymously on social media. It also explores internal misogyny and self image."

Lorna's latest artwork uses Romney wool; 'Art in Romney Marsh' is an annual visual arts festival, providing an exciting opportunity for artists and musicians to work in new and experimental ways. The exhibitions and performances take place in the medieval churches of Romney Marsh, artists are invited to respond to a very particular and inspiring environment. Lorna chose to create the hanging in wool as it has a long association with All Saints Church and Romney Marsh. The abbreviation ‘OMG’ (oh my God) has become so ubiquitous that's it's practically meaningless. Her work explores if setting it in the context of a church changes the perception of the phrase. The work will be hung in All Saints Church, Lydd.

New for 2014: Lorna is working on a collection of knitted portrait of people who have made an impact on her life. The first in the series is Kaffe Fassett.

Click here to contact Lorna

Click here to read more about her work

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Ali Hogg

Mini Dolls
Voodoo Pincushion
Sweet Treats
Grenade

Statement:

I have been interested in craft things from a very young age. My mother and great aunt taught me to knit as a young girl. I now love to sew, knit and more recently felt. I gained a Certificate in City & Guilds Creative Textiles in 2010, in patchwork and quilting. The following year I did two City & Guild Awards one in knitting and the other in machine embroidery. I am hoping to complete the City and Guilds Diploma this year.
I enjoy designing small fun, novelty knitted items and then writing up the patterns.

Click here to contact Ali

Click here for website

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Kate Jenkins

Golden Stitch
Tomato Stitchup
Fish and Chips
Roast Dinner

Statement:

Brighton-based knitwear company Cardigan was set up by Kate Jenkins in 2003 to fulfil her philosophy that anything can be created from yarn as long as it is made with love. With a strong emphasis on colour and innovative witty details, Cardigan has become synonymous with the creation of beautiful knitted and crocheted fashion and art.

2009 saw Kate have her first solo show of her work, her exhibition entitled "Kate's Cafe' where she turned the gallery into a fantasy cafe where everything

Click here to contact Kate

Click here for Kate's website and here for slideshow of Kate's recent exhibition

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Rachel John

Rachel at Alexandra Palace
Selection of Rugs
Rug on Chair
Extreme rugs

Statement:

Through experimentation and research Rachel has developed an innovation in craft concepts, techniques and tools called Extreme Craft©. Rachel has initially focussed on the first in the series - Extreme Knitting©. Using this innovation in hand knitting produces over 30mm (1 inch) thick hand knitted carpets in extraordinary colour blends of 100-200 yarns simultaneously. These pieces are much larger than would normally be seen in knitted items as Rachel has designed a new range of tools to make this possible.

Crafting with so many yarns simultaneously changes how we view yarn colour. Suddenly yarn can be used like paint, mixed and blended, changed at will without losing the flow. Samples and stock are made in a 70-80% wool mix with 20-30% fancy or strengthening yarns such as silks, ribbons, cottons and metallic yarns. Rugs can also be made using 100% pure single type yarns such as deliciously warm wool or beautiful cool cottons.

Rugs and tools are available for purchase either from stock or by commission. Rugs can be made to the size required for their purpose. All these rugs are deeply comfortable, very hard wearing, maintainable and wonderfully versatile. They can be designed to fit with both traditional and contemporary spaces. These rugs are heirloom quality and have the potential to last many generations making them an excellent investment. They can be used as:
-   on the floor as carpets, picnic rugs and therapist mats,
-   blankets, throws and even duvets,
-   wall hangings,
-   corporate art pieces.

During 2006-2007 Rachel will introduce further of her Extreme Craft© concepts.

Click here to contact Rachel

Click here to view more of Rachel's work

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Susie Johns

Grey Silk Top
 
Crocheted Camisole
Crocheted Sweet William Flowers

Statement:

Having studied Fine Art at the Slade School, Susie worked as a magazine and partworks editor for 11 years before going freelance in 1996. Her work spans a number of disciplines and she particularly enjoys activities that involve recycling and reinventing.

"Knitting and crochet skills have been passed down through the generations and are an important part of our cultural heritage. I love the fact that these disciplines are not only traditional and practical but a wonderful means of creative expression. As a designer, knitting and crochet are not only a part of my career but also of my daily domestic
routine, blurring the boundaries between work and home."

Click here to contact Susie

Click here to see more of Susie's work

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Sasha Kagan

       

Statement:

Sasha Kagan is a name synonymous with hand knitwear, her studio has been established for over forty years, gaining an enviable international reputation. Sasha Kagan is an author of many pattern books, containing collections of garments and accessories in order to make your own hand knitted piece. The studio produces knitting kits containing the high quality yarns and knitting pattern to complete a project. Sasha regularly gives lecture tours / workshops, teaching knitting and crochet design and techniques. A collection of readymade garments and commissioned pieces are available by arrangement. We pride ourselves on maintaining the high highest quality of design work and look forward to engaging with others who champion the art of hand knitting.

Click here to contact Sasha

Click here for website

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Chia-Shan Lee

Never Ending Story
Newspaper Dress
Newspaper Dress
Newspaper Dress

Statement:

I love to use my artworks to communicate both ideas and information. I am interested in cultural and environmental issues, especially a fusion of East and West. I tried to mix and separate the eastern and western culture, rebuild and represent the contemporary world from my perspective. 
To create my contemporary stories, I tried to interpret the current issues according to my own ideas from newspapers. Since 2010, I started to employ newspaper as narrative material therefore letting viewers feel the charming meaning of the words in the newspaper and implying someone told stories. Newspaper is a type of special material, which is full of emotions and messages. The viewer may not read the full article. However I would like people to feel the abstract meaning of the words which recorded the news of the day. They are the keys to encourage us to think about how daily newspapers usually last for only one day. After this year, it will be almost impossible to find a large amount of newspapers from this year. These works resemble vintage wines and antiques. As time passes by, you cannot find them anymore. Therefore, each work is unique and worth spending a lot of time to produce. Moreover, knitting is symbolic of a slow craft- time for reflection- knitting in a message.
The life of newspapers has been transformed into something of greater value. Newspapers which leave the paper recycling circle, can not only be discarded nor recycled, but also can be upcycled to a piece of a beautiful work. These newspaper works can keep some news and memories. When enjoying these newspaper artworks, I would like audiences to rethink the value and use of newspapers and their relationship with human beings
.

Click here to contact Chia-Shan

Click here for website

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Ruth Lee

Spirit Dress 1
Spirit
Knitted Sponge
Squids

Statement:

Ruth Lee was, until retirement, an associate Lecturer at Cumbria Institute of Arts (Carlisle). She is now a full time fibre artist, International tutor, a writer and knitted textile designer. Ruth is passionate about moving knit forward as a challenging and relevant working method within contemporary fibre arts practice. She is interested in how ideas evolve through the making process, and the symbiotic relationship between materials, processes and ideas. Ruth lives in the English border country with its ever changing skies and rugged but beautiful landscape, a peaceful and inspirational place in which to have her studio.

Multi disciplinary in approach, Ruth's current body of work explores knit, stitch, print and off-loom techniques in a wide range of manmade and natural materials including paper yarn, wire, wool and basketry materials. Applications include small-scale wearables, knitting patterns for publications, exhibitions and site-specific fibre-arts work for exterior spaces.  In 2005 two pieces of Ruth's work were selected for Knit 2 Together : Concepts in Knitting; a major Crafts Council touring exhibition of contemporary knitting.

Click here to contact Ruth

Click here to view more of Ruth's work

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Aude Marie

       

Statement:

My work is inspired by my eclectic interests, my taste for old & odd stuff, sweets, nature, historical events and for the different cultures that surround me here in London. I gather and communicate my ideas through my generous, colourful and nostalgic sketchbooks full of drawings, collages, colour palettes, personal photography and collected images and objects. From my imaginary wonderlands, I explore handicraft techniques such as hand-knitting, crochet, embroidery and paper experimentations to create two dimensional knitted samples and various textured surfaces . I then transform them into three dimensional objects by playing with the scales and qualities of the materials chosen.

My creations can vary greatly in scale, playfulness and detail; they and can be sculptural and unique like the knitted monster, or poetic experimentations made of plastic and paper, or detailed and precious accessories, jewellery, or even fun knitted furniture for children and rich bulky pieces for interiors.

Click here to contact Aude Marie

Click here for Aude Marie's website

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Rachel Massey

"The Woodland Trees Stand Together"
Camisole
Matinee Jacket
Knitted Brooch

Statement:

I have always been interested in textiles and crafts, especially knitting.  I learnt how to knit at 7 years old.  I still have that first piece of knitting I did and sometimes take it along to workshops I am teaching to encourage people.  I have been working as a freelance knitwear designer since November 2007 and always enjoy the new challenges that each new project throws up as well as working with different yarns and textures.  I am always keen to persuade each new customer to have a hand in designing their garment; they often surprise themselves with just how creative they can be!

Click here to contact Rachel

Click here for Rachel's website

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Rachael Matthews

Cover of one of Rachael's Books
How to knit a Hand Grenade
Seascape Wall Hanging

Statement by Lisa J. Curtis:

In person, British author Rachael Matthews is just as outlandish as the illustrations in her new guidebook, "Knitorama: 25 Great & Glam Things to Knit." The self-appointed knitting ambassador made a special appearance at the "Holiday Craftacular" in Greenpoint on Dec. 17. While wielding four-foot-long knitting needles ("to knit carpets and curtains," of course), Matthews (pictured) wore a knitted duck, perched on a knitted nest full of knitted eggs - on her head. Her whimsical hat couldn't help but draw attention to Matthews's mission to raise enthusiasm about "knitting in public," her personal catch-phrase. "It's really amazing and different from what we have in England," said Matthews of the "Craftacular." "People were openly inquisitive about the craft.

In England, people are supportive, but don't ask so many questions about how to do it. "Through her book and through her nomadic club, Cast Off, which she co-founded in London in 2001, the East London resident is encouraging folks to take their knitting into unexpected places: posh bars, nightclubs and on "the tube," London's subway. (Of course, for nightclubs with poor lighting, Matthews recommends wearing a miner's hat.) Matthews's book sets itself apart from the usual manuals with instructions on how to make clothing by encouraging readers to tackle soft sculptures: knitted cakes, ham sandwiches and pints of stout. One might call these examples of Matthews's "extreme knitting." "It's a 3-D medium," said Matthews. "There are so many different yarns and needle sizes, you can work in 2-D and 3-D. There's a lot more freedom once you get past the idea of knitting clothing. "But she does include patterns for wearable art, too, including fried-egg earmuffs and a hip (and seemingly easy to make) cardigan made of 30 rectangles and four buttons.

"Knitting is really important for your well-being, for therapy and love, really," explained Matthews. "When you're knitting for someone else, it's for love. So whether it's done in a lonesome way [at home] or teaching the world to knit, I like to live craft as a way of life."

Click here to contact Rachael

Click here for Rachael's website

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Nicki Merrall

       

Statement:

Nicki Merrall learnt the joy of working with fabric, thread and yarn in early childhood; she's been creating textile pieces ever since. After careers as a biochemist and teacher she graduated with a Masters in Fashion & Textile from Nottingham Trent University in 2012. She specialises in crochet, hand and machine knit. Nicki publishes crochet and hand knit patterns and creates installation pieces using fully computerised knitting machines. All her work is inspired by a love of art and nature and influenced by knowledge of traditional knitting and textile techniques. She enjoys taking a technique from one textile tradition and experimenting to reproduce it in an other.

Click here to contact Nicki

Click here for Nicki's website and here for Facebook


Claire Montgomerie

Mouse Mitts
Cabled Sweater
50s Dolman
Bolero

Statement:

Claire Montgomerie is a textiles designer, specialising in knitting and crochet. Since graduating with an MA in constructed textiles from the Royal College of Art in 2002, she has been designing her own eclectic range of accessories, toys and garments under the name of Monty.  She has also designed and written knitting and crochet books and patterns. Her latest book, Easy Baby Knits due out in 2007 and she is currently writing a book of patterns based on her accessories.  The knitted toys are participating in an exhibition at the Manchester craft and design centre until December 2006.  She enjoys teaching textiles at many different levels, working with people of all ages through workshops and knitting lessons at different institutions in North London such as the artsdepot in North Finchley, Barnet College in Herts and the yarn salon, loop, in Islington.

The toys I create are the result of collaboration with animation company Model Robot.  I feel that the quirky characters drawn by the animators translate into the textiles medium perfectly, capturing their charm and personality to create eccentric and sometimes peculiar looking animals, aliens robots and monsters.  I loved working with the flat images and bringing them to life, mirroring Model Robot's process of animation.  This delight in the making has led me to continue to craft creatures from my own sketches, as well as Model robot's, forming toys which are not only meant to be used in the traditional sense of the word.  While they make a fun and beautiful child's plaything, I find the toys also have a universal attraction, with many adults being reminded of their own well-loved, threadbare childhood friend.  I find as I begin to make the toys, each one gradually develops its own individual character.  This well-worn texture and one-off quality is created by the wonky irregularity of a unique handmade piece, incorporating hand knitting and hand sewing, old scraps of yarn, thread and fabric, vintage buttons and cut up, old, worn jumpers.  The knitting patterns I am producing with Model Robot, I hope, will let each maker experience just this pleasure and joy in fashioning an original hand crafted piece.  We invite each maker to send us a picture of their finished creature to emphasise the uniqueness each person can bring to the same basic pattern.

New for 2011, Claire now edits 'Inside Crochet' magazine and has more published books; Easy Kids Knits RPS 2009, Knitting for Children Cico Books 2011, Knitting Vintage Carlton Publishing 2011

Click here to contact Claire

Click here to view more of Claire's work

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Kerry Mosley

Leaf Heart
Organic
Portrait
Soldier 167

Statement:

In 2002 I started a part time degree in Art and Design (textiles and ceramics) not quite knowing where it would take me.  Four years later I find myself working with hand knitted wire creating both abstract and figurative wall hangings and framed pieces. My enduring interest is in the human form particularly portraiture. Most of my portrait based work starts out as small detailed drawings and my aim is to reproduce the spontaneity of these initial sketches in the final stitched piece. I am increasingly enjoying the challenge of working on a large scale and exploiting the apparent fragility of the finished work and its capacity to cast shadows and secondary images when displayed.

Click here to contact Kerry

Click here to view more of Kerry's work

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Deirdrie Nelson

Deposit
Football
Gin Socks
Identity

Statement:

Deirdre Nelson is an artist originally from Ireland but living and working in Glasgow. Since graduating from Glasgow School of Art in 1992, her work has evolved through experimenting with materials and methods of making in which handwork and craftsmanship provide direction and context.  Hand skills are used in the work in a humourous commentary on social and textile history within the museum and contemporary gallery. Her work employs a variety of techniques and materials fusing traditional textile skills and contemporary reinterpretation. She has exhibited in Britain and overseas and has recently been selected for Jerwood contemporary Makers in London.  

Deirdre is currently artist in residence at Taigh Chearsabagh Museum and Arts Centre in Lochmaddy N. Uist, Outer Hebrides .  She is working with artefacts and archive material relating to social and domestic history of the Uists and will use the archive to inform new work to create and exhibition within the museum at Taigh Chearsabagh beginning May -  December 2008  .

With an interest in hand skills, Deirdre was initially drawn to objects relating to ‘making' within the collection, wool winder, weaving shuttle, drop spindle, rope twister, butter pats etc. With a keen interest in the history and technique of knitting, Deirdre has been working with Aran and fisherman's gansey patterns in creating work that relates to fishing but also those at home working in a domestic setting while fishermen are at sea.

Domestic objects have textiles (knit and embroidered cloth) added which bringing objects and social history to life. Texts have provided inspiration also through the collection of Gaelic proverbs that relate to the objects and provide humorous and poignant addition to the work. Materials such as linen, hemp, wool and tweed have been carefully chosen to relate to Uist history and many works are edged with gold that relates to the discovery of gold dust in N. Uist in the past.

The community are getting involved with the knitting of fish which will be auctioned off to raise money for the lifeboat association at the end of the year. This is a project which continues from Deirdre's previous work in Shetland and a collaborative project ‘The Fish Exchange' with Hazel Hughson of Shetland Arts. Involving the community in knitting fish not only provides enjoyable activity but also links the history of netting, knitting and fishing. She hopes to challenge some fishermen to knit their own catch

Click here to contact Deirdrie

Click here for Deirdrie's blog with current projects

Click here for blog with knit related work for an Irish exhibition Modern Languages with National Craft Gallery in Ireland

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Liz Padgham-Major

 
Domestic Bliss
Hopper
Memory

Statement:

Domestic bliss - I love to knit!

Liz encompasses a fun and playful quality in her work by using a traditional craft form mixed with a quirky sense of the unusual and unexpected. Her collection of hand knitted pieces are often inspired by everyday objects that are then transformed into colourful and tactile pieces that gain a narrative quality. 'There is a really playful side to my work and I want to take hand knitting out of context and into the art world to enthuse more people, I aim to take knitting to another, more inclusive and creative level.'

Liz's work has been featured in Simply Knitting magazine, Issue 21 ‘Knit one, purl fun' and Knit Today magazine, The Knitted Wedding and The Knitted Garden. Exhibitions include Chiswick House in London, Liberty's Department Store, London, The Crypt Gallery in Seaford and Trinity Arts Centre in Tunbridge Wells.

Click here to contact Liz

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Naomi Paul

Crocheted Chandelier
Mustard Macaroon
Steamer Chair
Triangles Rug

Statement:

Naomi Paul is a London based textile designer specialising in handmade interior textiles. Inspired by traditional craft techniques and the emotional attachment that one can develop over time towards materials and objects. Naomi explores the possibilities of knit and crochet for the home and beyond. With a considered approach to materials and processes Naomi sources organic, industry waste and home grown, British luxury yarns. By constructive and deconstructive exploration, the designs evolve organically, forming pattern through structure with a subtle and sophisticated use of colour.

Click here to contact Naomi

Click here for Naomi's website

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Aiste Petra

       

Statement:

All my studies and practical experience are looking for a creative approach to environment and individual person. I have done lots of Art- works in the field of Mural Painting Restoration, Visual Art and various Crafts (Ceramics, Glass, Mosaic, other Decorative Arts).
My creative work was highly influenced by international experience. I was always a big fan of Hand-made Green Design and fusion of different Cultures and Art media. Most of my Artworks I could describe as conceptual, abstract, vital, decorative and very often ornamental.

Click here to contact Aiste

Click here for Aiste's website (update pending)

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Hook and Scumble (Steph Phillips)

Jurrasic Revealed
Freeform Graffiti
Scrumble Stones
Copper Chemistry

Statement:

I was born and grew up in South Wales surrounded by the inspiring Wye Valley and Forest of Dean and later moved to the North West. Through my childhood I was always found to be experimenting with different artistic mediums and at aged 7 was taught to crochet and sew. I have studied 3-dimensional Design and  specialised in jewellery and silver smithing , and later went onto experimenting with freeform and wire crochet as well as developing a technique to produce porcelain crochet pieces. Through personal study and by attending a variety of three-dimensional art workshops I have gone onto develop my own style of crochet and three dimensional art, and continued to be inspired by my surroundings. I work now in mainly freeform  crochet using a variety of mediums including recycle materials, wire and wool . I  also continue to develop other textile techniques such as felting, spinning and natural dyeing which are also featured in my textile work.

I particularly enjoy the freedom crochet gives to create three-dimensional distinctive pieces of art which can be worn , hung or used and have been hugely influenced by the work of Arline M. Fisch, James Walters and the late Sylvia Cosh. As well as exhibiting I have also have taught various crochet workshops locally and nationally including the Knitting and Stitching show, Alexandra Palace.

I am also a member of Bedfordshire Artist Network , The International Felt Association and The International Freeform Crochet Guild.

Click here to contact Steph

Click here for Hook & Scumble website

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Steve Plummer

Arrows
Hagrid
Mona Lisa
Triangles

Statement:

For many years I was a Maths teacher, at times using knitting as a vehicle for teaching Maths. Since I retired from teaching in schools, I have continued with mathematical knitting and also branched out into other types of knitting. My particular interest has become the design and creation of Illusion Knitting (sometimes known as Shadow Knitting) pieces of work. If you have never seen, or have little experience of, illusion knitting a short explanation may help. In illusion knitting a piece of work will look like alternate stripes of two different colours when viewed from directly in front but when viewed at an angle a picture or pattern appears. My ever-growing collection of illusion knits has attracted a great deal of interest from around the world and I believe that I have revolutionised charting for illusion knits enabling others to create their own complex illusion knits more easily. It is extremely difficult to photograph illusion knits effectively. They really have to be seen 'in the flesh' to see how a piece of striped knitting in two colours turns into a detailed picture in several shades. Despite being brought up in a houseful of knitters, I only learned to knit about twenty years ago. I am told that I still knit too tightly but that is an advantage with illusion knitting as it reveals the picture to even better effect.

Click here to contact Steve

Click here for Steve's website

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Melanie Porter

Poppy and Humphrey
James
Emma
Rocky

Statement:

After 10 years working as a knitwear designer for a number of international fashion brands, including Burberry and Pure Collection, Melanie Porter turned her expertise to furniture, creating one-off contemporary designs from chairs sourced from auctions and markets across the UK.
Following the success of her furniture, she has developed a range of knitted home accessories, including lamps, cushions and clocks.

Whether it’s restoring and upholstering a chair, crocheting buttons, or felting woollen panels, it’s all done by hand, by Melanie herself. Such painstaking attention to detail means that colours and textures can be precisely placed in a way that is utterly unique. The result of this incredibly labour-intensive process is a stunning and individual, but hardwearing, work of art, destined to be a future family heirloom.

“Although I loved my job in fashion, I really missed the hands-on creativity of actually making something,” explains Melanie. “I also wanted to learn upholstery – it’s something that has intrigued me since I was a child and would watch my grandfather repairing chairs. I am actually still using the tools that I inherited from him.”

Melanie contributed to the Campaign For Wool's Wool House during the exhibition 13-24 March2013. She also has a pop-up shop in Covent Garden and a video all about her work.

Click here to contact Melanie

Click here for Melanie's website

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Celia Pym

Celia Knitting
Crochet Bag
Mended Hole
Outside In Aichi Trie

Statement:

I started knitting in 2001 as a warm up activity. To get me settled in my studio I would knit to ready my fingers and get thinking. I soon discovered that I would knit for whole afternoons. The warm up became my main project. The wool I had decided to knit with, at that time was red since the most exciting wool in the shop was red coloured. Since there was a red line on the subway system where I was living I would knit the red knitting riding the red line. After the red knitting, the next idea was to measure a journey around Japan. I was sponsored by the Gardner fellowship and made a journey to collect yarns from all over Japan, to knit everyday and to climb mountains. And in my everyday knitting I measured out the journey I was making. The idea for this journey came when a teacher pointed out that knitting was a portable art form. I could carry with me everything I needed. I collected needles and yarn as I went and otherwise traveled light. With only a small backpack. So it was portable and also offered an introduction and purpose to being in Japan. Everywhere I went I had to explain I was
looking for wool. I would often knit outdoors or in public places. I work with process and ways of recording activities. I am interested in the spaces the body occupies and the ways in which we go about ordinary life.

Click here to contact Celia

Click here to view more of Celia's work

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Louisette Rasoloniana

Barocco, short
Ikuko, samurai plastron
Barocco media coverage
Deedee, hooded plastron and short

Statement:

All pieces are telling a story, the tale of the garment, to be worn as ATTIRE; making the artefact into attractive spell for the Eyes and the Touch; enticing the imagination to complete the habiliment and dressing the Body and Soul for a dramatic make over. As the Mastery of the Artifice sublimates the Beauty of the Human attempt for betterment, the Pomp magnifies the wearer, doting him/her with new properties and qualities. Real or false, does it matter? May we be able to rewrite our own selves; live our life as desired and dreamt! Like the Bollywood heroins, I want my wearers to love and live life to its maximal expression: glamorous endangered species ready to roar and show its claws! I knit for them unique pieces ready to play a tale that inhabits the vesture. Pakeezah is not an invitation to the Masquerade but rather the revealing: when the attire exalts the utmost essence of oneself!

Click here to contact Louisette

Click here for Louisette's website (update pending)

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Anna Richardson

Lady Heather Shawl
Leaves In Ice Sweater
Shawl
Fits To A Tee

Statement:

Anna Richardson is a freelance knitwear designer and hand knitter. Having knit from the age of four, she stopped working as an Anaesthetist in 2009 to pursue a design career, subsequently writing for The Knitter, Knit Now Magazine, Knitty and Stylecraft yarns as well as in collaboration with a number of independent yarn retailers and dyers. Under the auspices of OneHandKnits she self-publishes patterns for hand knitters on Ravelry and at craft festivals. Anna designs ladieswear, menswear, childrenswear, accessories and home furnishings but specialises in intricate lace shawls and geek-themed quirky knits.

Click here to contact Anna

Click here for Anna's website

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Freddie Robins

Comfort Creatures
Knitted Homes of Crime
Banner

Statement:

My awareness of textiles came through 'Janie', a rag doll made for me by my Aunt. Janie's orange wool hair was a great comfort to me, I would tickle my nose with it. Her hair would gradually wear out and my Godmother would give her a new lot, always wool, always orange.My Godmother became my greatest inspiration.  She was always making things, not frumpy, lumpy things that you hid in your wardrobe, but fashionable, desirable toys and clothes.  She was a free spirit.  She lived alone, was unmarried and just got on with her own thing.  I associated textiles with her and therefore with freedom. I loved the 'Clangers', they were knitted.  My Godmother taught me to knit, it was difficult, she was left handed.  I loved  knitting. I was further inspired by the knitwear designer, Patricia Roberts.  She did not rely upon traditional textile images, wholesome flowers, but turned instead to the contemporary urban world for inspiration.  She was bold.  I entered a knitwear design competition in a craft magazine.  I won.  I was academic but I was also creative.  I knew which path I would follow, the one that represented individuality.

My studio practise questions conformity and notions of normality, and intersects the categorisation of art and craft.  I use knitting to explore pertinent contemporary issues of the domestic, gender and the human condition.  I find knitting to be a powerful medium for self-expression and communication because of the cultural preconceptions surrounding it. My work subverts these preconceptions and disrupts the notion of the medium being passive and benign.  My ideas are expressed through an exploration of the human form and have resulted in pieces such as 'Odd Gloves' and 'Odd Sweaters'.  These series question physical normality incorporating both humour and fear.  The titles are important.  I like to play on words to make visual suggestions: 'Hand of Good, Hand of God' and 'Skin - a good thing to live in'.  In 'Anyway' I explore value and scale through the production of a large knitted sculpture made on CAD controlled industrial machinery.

Click here to contact Freddie

Click here to view more of Freddie's work

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Lynn Gray Ross

Arran Waistcoat
Galway Shawl
Lace Scarf
Stripey Scarf

Statement:

My designs are rooted in Scottish tradition, partly because it's an essential part of me but also because I feel it's crucial that we document these traditions and make them available when so much cultural heritage is being lost. I'm also much influenced by the yarns I create or find, usually letting the pattern suggest itself from the hank or ball.

In 1975 Lynn moved to Arran to set up her textile studio at Silverbirch, so that she could work professionally and raise her children. Lynn learned to weave, spin and dye with plants in Sweden. For the past 35 odd years she's worked with yarns & colour designing knitting patterns and woven wall-hangings. Lynn has written two books: "Knitting Patterns for Handspun Wool" and "Knitting with Handspun".

Click here to contact Lynn

Click here to view more of Lynn's work

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Lynne Rowe

Harriet Hippo
Little Ladybird Bootees
Crochet Cupcake
Chunky Neck Cosy

Statement:

For the past twenty years I have worked as an Environmental Scientist, leading on waste and resource efficiency. In 2011, I became a full time knit and crochet designer.  

Like many knitting and crochet fanatics, I was taught by my Nan at a very young age and have loved all things fibre ever since. I started out knitting scarves and dresses for my dolls and by my teens I was knitting Patricia Roberts iconic liquorice allsorts jumpers. Now, I design fun and quirky knit and crochet patterns which are regularly published in UK and US knitting magazines and publications. These include' Let's Get Crafting', 'Knitting Pattern a Day Calendar' and 'Let's Knit'. I also publish my own patterns online and run local knit and crochet workshops. It's really important that knit and crochet skills are passed on from generation to generation and I'm pleased to be part of this through my workshops. Many of my designs are inspired by Japanese Amigurumi. I love bringing small things to life with yarn and hook. My knitted cakes never fail to raise a smile and feedback and comments include 'a true work of art', 'fantastic cakes' and 'lovely loveliness!'. I love to recycle and upcycle yarns, and encourage others to take a green approach to their crafting.

Click here to contact Lynne

Click here to view more of Lynne's work

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Claire Russell

Wrapped In A Purple Cloud
Gold and Bronze
Spider's Web
Spring Is Woven

Statement:

I am a knitter, weaver and stitcher who loves to create and to use textiles as a medium for art and work under the name of purpleclaire textiles.
 
Like many people, I learnt to knit as a child and I have created with textiles on and off throughout my life. I started to knit in a freeform way at the beginning of 2010, inspired by the Canadian knitter Jane Thornley.  I knit without a pattern using a freeform style to explore colour and texture. I knit landscapes, garments and multi-purpose pieces.  I consider that knitting does not have to result in garments; it can be an art form in its own right.  My knitting and weaving incorporates yarns of many kinds, natural objects, recycled objects and other unexpected materials. I do my weaving mainly on a pegloom.  This is a simple traditional loom, which allows the weaver the freedom to combine yarns, fabrics and other materials.  I love to weave outdoors on structures such as pallets, and frames including a climbing frame.  I do a weaving every day, which I document on my blog weavaday.tumblr.com

I love exploring new ideas for creating and enjoy sharing ideas with adults and children. I was taught by her mother and I am self-taught.  I recently competed a course in textiles with the Open College of the Arts where I developed design ideas, learnt some new techniques and revived my interest in stitching.  I find my inspiration from the environment, both natural and built, from everyday objects and from other artists.  I enjoy working with found objects and upcycled materials in textile art. I am passionate about creativity as a way for people to relax and to enjoy themselves.

I am the co-ordinator of the Craft Club at Turner Contemporary Gallery in Margate, where volunteers teach pegloom weaving, crochet, knitting and finger knitting. 

Click here to contact Claire

Click here for Claire's website

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Biddy Rychnovsky

30 Seconds
Family Knitting
Keeping Our Memories Warm
Continuation

Statement:

My work in the main is concerned with my own and other people's memories of and associations with knitting where pockets form repositories for those memories and where, in some cases, the memories are incorporated as text into garments and other articles. In more recent work I have used knitting as a basis to explore other areas as in the images above '30 Seconds' consists of 15 knitted and sewn children's garments related to the fact the it has been said that every two seconds a child dies in Africa as a result of disease, poverty, hunger or violence of one kind or another.
With 'Family Portrait (Three Generations)' I have used digital media to combine images of sections of garments made by myself, my mother and niece to show how close the associations my family has with knitting and how it somehow defines who we are.  Also shown digital prints, Black & White and Red & Green using wire knitting as a basis which is then manipulated and printed onto canvas. 'Keeping Our Memories Warm' a collection of squares knitted for me by W.I. members onto which their memories and connections to knitting have been embroidered.
Finally 'Continuation I and II' is part of a series of five pieces developed from working with DNA scientists to try and bring a greater understanding of the sequences that contribute to the uniqueness that is our true identity.   Making visible that which is hidden using common elements such as knitting and light together with other processes and interpretations in wall mounted pieces to produce a truly unique and personal portrait as a functional artwork.
I also continue to explore ways in which I can use knitting by combining with other media and experimenting with materials unrelated to knitting to express ideas and concepts while encouraging others to be creative with their knitting and to 'think outside the box'.

Click here to contact Biddy

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Clare Sams

E.Gibbons
Camp X-Ray
Sculptures installed at The National Trusts Bourne Mill
Knitted Narratives

Statement:

Knitted Narratives
To utilize knitting as a medium through which to tell the tales of our urban environment offers a unique perspective. Clare knits to reflect the outcast, forgotten and neglected, and the medium automatically cloaks the subject in a shroud of comfort. It is as if the dirt and grime has been covered in a blanket of old time homeliness. Troubling tales approached with warmth and understanding, there is a strong theme of respect for those on the edge of society, which the knitting process renders warm and reassured. When knitting tales, the sorrow and despair is made accessible by the familiarity  and comfort of yarn. There is humour in the documentation of our mundane everyday lives. The things that are ephemeral and easily forgotten are just as worthy of being remembered as the great and the good of society.

"I am a practising textile artist, using hand knit to create visual narratives of people and places on the fringes of society. I also produce a range of knitted samplers and other items using a knitting machine. I have a wealth of experience teaching craft based workshops within higher education and at art events. I also run artist led workshop sessions to help make art and craft more accessible to the wider community."

Click here to contact Clare

Click here for website

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Sally Spinks

Construct
Knit Or Die
Still Burning
Random Acts Of Kindness

Statement:

Sally Spinks graduated with a Masters in Fine Art from Goldsmith's, London in 2008 and works mainly with textiles including hand and machine knitting. She has an interest in how issues of control and consumerism impact on the changing nature of the class system and her work explores areas where these intersect with home, identity and a sense of belonging to both our past and future. Using predominately domestic materials she produces either installation works or sculptural pieces.

Since graduating Sally has exhibited in the UK and the US and continues to develop her artistic practice in both knitting and other textile medium. Like many other knitting enthusiasts, she was taught to knit at an early age by her mother and has a sister and aunt who are just as passionate about the craft. Along with them she has also knitted garments for use in

Click here to contact Sally

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Libby Summers

Iona Tank Top
Zoe Accessories
Classic Jumper
Emily Tea Cosy

Statement:

Uncompromising creativity and a passion for traditional knitting techniques are at the heart of Libby?s work. Libby Summers produces hand-knitted textiles that reflect her love for the colours of English and Scottish landscapes and the value she places on quality natural fibres.

Libby was originally encouraged to set up her business in the early 2000s, when she was living as part of a close village community, and befriended other women who were finding outlets for their creativity in felting, bread making, soap-crafts and bespoke lampshades. Surrounded by people who were realising their creative potential gave her the confidence she needed to get started.

At the outset, Libby?s vision was to be a manufacturer as well as a designer and she is passionate about keeping production in the UK. Libby works from her home in Lincolnshire to create patterns which are brought to life by other women working in remote parts of the UK. Libby realised her ambition of her designs being available readymade on the high street when her unique hand knitted hot water bottle covers in luxury boxes went on sale in John Lewis in 2010. Her designs continue to get high profile attention. Past successes include featuring as number One of The Financial Times Magazine Top Ten Valentine Gifts in February 2012 and as Best Buy in Living Etc. February 2012. Recently she has had numerous designs commissioned and published by Artesano, Knitcrate, and has just been commissioned to design for a major new craft book to be launched next year.

Click here to contact Libby

Click here for website

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Jo Storie

Cove
Snood
Cove Card
Coffee Cup

Statement:

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Click here for Jo's website

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Jemma Sykes

Chalice Lace Cable
Butcher Couture
Peruvian Inspired
Fine Mohair

Statement:

Since graduating from the Royal College of Art in 2003, I've been working as a freelance knitted textile designer. My work often appears organic but is in fact highly planned, delicate swatches that illustrate the detail and depth that is possible within the surface texture of knit. New stitches are developed by hand and then later translated on to domestic and dubied machines. Challenging preconceptions of knit by combining traditional knitting yarns with unconventional fibres that include hair, rafia, and metal, playing with scale and incorporating plaiting, knotting and beadwork to create fabrics that seem to bear little relationship to knitting, while owing it everything. The possibilities of knit are a constant inspiration.

In 2003 I won the Texprint Prize for Knit, and in 2004 I was awarded the Crafts Councils Development Award. I design personal collections to sell, and collaborate developing fabrics specifically for fashion houses, past clients include Alexander Mcqueen and Michiko Koshino in London, Lanvin, Givenchy and Emanuel Ungaro in Paris, Fuzzi and Etro in Italy. I have also produced garments for Givenchys Haute Couture collections and worked with Michiko Koshino on numerous showpieces.
In 2005 I was asked to participate in the Crafts Councils Knit 2tog exhibition, and in 2006 I worked with the Italian yarn company Lineapiu producing inspirational pieces for the yarn show Pitti Filati in Florence. I also tutor part time at Buckinghamshire Chilterns University College on their Knitted Textile course.

Updates for 2008 include further teaching at The Royal College of Art and Central St Martins, new clients include Julien Macdonald and Biba (garments for their fashion shows) also my work has been displayed in the windows of Harrods and Selfridges/London and recently Sheffield Millenium galleries commisioned a piece for "Get Knitted".

Update for 2010: Jemma has begun her own range of hand knitting patterns, with the emphasis on using creative stitches to make wearable garments, this is something she's hoping to concentrate on in 2011, the first pattern is now on ravelry. (Chalice Lace Cable)

Click here to contact Jemma

Click here for Jemma's website

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Ildiko Szabo

Collar
Cream Curly Necklace
Coloured Coral
Purple Leaves Top

Statement:

My mother taught me to crochet, knit and sew when I was a little girl. For many years I concentrated on intarsia knitting, making up my own colourful designs. Later I went on to train as a period costume maker and fashion & textiles teacher. After 30 years I returned to crochet when I accidentally came across freeform crochet and the work of the members of the International Freeform Crochet Guild on the Internet. I am fascinated by the 3D aspect of crochet for creating interesting textures and sculptural shapes as well as combining it with knitting. With a strong background in dressmaking, I am always experimenting with how freeform knitting and crochet could be used for garments and accessories. Last year I contributed a small coral reef to the Hyperbolic Coral Reef Exhibition of the Institute for Figuring. I am also working on further recycling projects using plastic bags and old clothes.

Click here to contact Ildiko

Click here to view more of Ildiko's work

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Sharon Taylor

       

Statement: coming soon...

Click here to contact Sharon

Click here for Sharon's website and here for Facebook

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Rita Taylor

Courtesy of Knit Today

Wedding dress

Courtesy of Knit Today

From the Dyed in the Wool Exhibition

Statement:

My mother was a dressmaker and I grew up making clothes from all kinds of textiles for my dolls and teddies.  I haven't lot this interest in making miniature things but I also design, knit and crochet items of all kinds and sizes - even to making a full size net for goalposts!
 
I design for specialist yarn companies working with natural fibres and also for magazines where my work ranges from cushions, bags and throws to christening shawls and adult wear.  My special interest is in the history of knitting and crochet and I love making things based on the traditional garments of the British Isles. I have collaborated with the Moray Firth Partnership in their promotion of fishermen's ganseys and will be knitting the gansey for the prizewinner in their raffle. I am also happy to work on more unusual designs and in November 2009 crocheted a purse from human hair. I have also written two books on knitting and crochet techniques.

Click here to contact Rita

Click here for Rita's website

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Hazel Tindall

Alicabel, Cowl
Acht, Hat
Hinnerley, Jumper
Ismarl, Cushion

Statement:

Hazel Tindall started knitting before she could read and write. She’s been knitting and designing unique garments ever since.

Hazel’s first love is knitting Fair Isle; with so many colours and patterns to combine into unique pieces she will never run out of ideas. She began writing instructions for other knitters to follow only a few years ago. Two of her patterns were bought by Jamieson & Smith – one is sold as a kit and the other is included in their book “Knit Real Shetland”. Two more patterns were donated to Shetland Guild of Spinners, Knitters, Weavers and Dyers for inclusion in their book “A Legacy of Shetland Lace”. Since redundancy in 2010, she has devoted more time to designing and writing knitting patterns.

Derek Reay chose to feature Hazel when he produced the book “Significant Figures in Art and Craft Today” in 2011. Hazel spoke on “Knitting in Shetland in the 1960s”, based on her mother's diaries, at “In the Loop 3” knitting conference in September 2012.

Hazel has led workshops for Shetland Wool Week, Handweavers Guild of America (Convergence), John C Campbell Folk School (USA), Dornoch Fibre Fest (Scotland). She demonstrates at Shetland Textile Museum and for Shetland Guild of Spinners, Knitters, Weavers and Dyers. Her main wish is to encourage knitters to adopt an efficient knitting method.

Hazel became the UK Hand Knitting Association's World Record Holder for the Fastest Knitter in February 2008

Click here to contact Hazel

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Amy Twigger-Holroyd


Amaranta Dress & Scarf
Cashmere Amaranta Cape
Renata Jumper & Amaranta Shrug
Ursula Tank & Renata Sandals

Statement:

'Keep & Share' is an alternative luxury label, offering unconventional – yet infinitely wearable – knitwear for both men and women. Each piece is designed to satisfy over time, and is lovingly knitted by the designer, Amy Twigger Holroyd and her small team of makers. The designs range from scarves and slippers to jumpers, cardis and wraps, all created from textured and patterned knits in off-beat colour combinations.
 
The 'Keep & Share' approach to ethical fashion revolves around long-term wearer satisfaction. True to the label’s name, Amy aims to create pieces that will transcend short-lived trends and improve with age; versatile pieces that can be worn in different ways and by different people over their lifetime. In addition to making and selling her work via Keep & Share, Amy also runs machine and hand knitting workshops at her studio, located in beautiful countryside just outside Hereford.

Click here to contact Amy

Click here to view more of Amy's work and details of her courses

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Emma Vining

Kagome Cardigan
Curves and Corners Scarf
Drumlins Cowl
Little Sunsets Scarf

Statement:

I am an enthusiastic and creative knitter with a strong interest in the design and technical aspects of knitting. In this regard, I am proud to be a contributor to the Knitter Magazine and a finalist in the 2013 UKHKA Knitted Textile Awards, Open Category. As well as being an experienced knitter, I am City and Guilds qualified, having completed the Level Three Certificate in Hand Knitting and Design. I am currently working towards my City and Guilds Diploma. An important part of my research involves attending knitting events such as the Knitting and Stitching Show, The Knitting History Forum and the ‘In the Loop’ Conference. Additionally, I gain many of my design inspirations at the Victoria and Albert Museum through gallery visits and participating in events, talks and study days. At the moment I am working on new projects and designs that combine multiple techniques with innovative ideas

Click here for Emma's blog and here for Emma's patterns on Ravelry


Shane Waltener

Knitted Staircase
Knitting Webs
Installation
Exhibition Northampton (2011)

Statement:

Beyond the aesthetics of knitting, I am interested in the social dimension of the craft, people exchanging stories, recollections and memories when knitting together.  The 'Knitting In The Round' highlights this social interaction.  Knitters sit in a circle creating a large loop sharing circular needles.  Each stitch, symbolically containing a thought, is entered into the circle and circulates around it.  This shared network is much like a lo-fi version of the internet.  The emphasis is on the activity as much as the fabric produced.  The resulting knitted loops are then exhibited as a sculptures that reference the history of this activity.  Photographs taken during the performance are attached to the knitted loops.

Shown in a contemporary art context, knitting somehow redresses the balance between ‘high’ and ‘low’ art, between art and craft, the latter having much underrated historically as it has been associated with women's work.  Craft in non western cultures is still associated with rituals and magic.  In Europe on the other hand, it has been marginalised on account of the idea of progress and modernity.  Knitting in this way becomes political.  Producing hand knitted objects celebrated the craft and keeps it alive.  It can also be  means of resisting the ever increasing grip of commercialism.
As a male practitioner producing crochet and knitted pieces, and focusing on other domestic crafts such as cake decorating and sugarcraft,  I consciously raise question relating to these issues.

Engaging with traditional domestic practices, Shane Waltener finds beauty in the everyday, and makes art a truly shared experience. Bringing people together through the craft of knitting, viewers are invited to sit, relax, weave, and most importantly, chat. Throughout the show, Waltener’s woolly sculpture grows, encompassing the histories of the participants: the stitches taking on the individual styles of their makers, each purl and knit capturing a single moment in time, representing their contribution and exchange, documenting the creation of a make-shift community.

Click here to contact Shane

Click here to view more of Shane's work

Click here for recent article in The Independent

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Jane Walters

'Cabled Cardi' Inspired by catwalk design 2012 'Lacy Mohair' Includes latest fashion unusual
fastenings.
'Rose Kimono' Was published by inside crochet 'Tunic Card'i in soft mohair and slub mix'

Statement:

I have been knitting and crocheting since the age of five. I began to design clothes during my teens and have been doing so ever since. I am now a designer/maker of knitwear patterns that reflect current fashion trends. My current work is to make fashionable or trendy patterns that can be knitted with any type of yarn within each category, e.g. 4ply, chunky etc. These patterns are not exclusive to a particular brand of yarn, which makes it more affordable for people to use cheaper yarn and still get a fashionable garment. As my patterns can be made with any yarn, they are also ideal for all those of us who have lofts or cupboards filled with wool previously bought, just waiting for a pattern to turn them into wonderful garments. My designs encompass a wide range of knitted and crocheted garments, with a proportion of what I design being for beginner and intermediate knitters, whilst at the same time developing more complicated designs for experts who would like a challenge. No matter what level the knitter is at they can be assured that they will be knitting an eye-catching fashionable design. I have had a number of my designs featured in Inside Crochet magazine.

Click here to contact Jane

Click here for Jane's website

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Rodica Watkins

Statement:

" Even though I have 45 years of experience in knitting and crocheting, I am ready to answer the new challenges of learning the new technics which will allow me to enrich in my own way and to express my vision about life. My favorite design inspirations come from nature and I like to think that all of my designs look like a colorful, flourishing, silky garden bringing to my wardrobe its perfume and joy."

In March 2013 Rodica showed her 'Cottage Garden' designer collection at a fashion show in Norwich (images above)

Click here to contact Rodica

Click here for Rodica's website and Facebook page

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Donna Wilson

The Family
   
London Fashion Week 2008

Statement:

Donna Wilson graduated from Royal College of Art London in July 2003. During her time there she produced a range of work that included the knitted friendly creatures, the doily rug, wrapped cacti, the caterpillow and the hands on rug (a collaboration with Carmel McElroy).

Her work is playful, tactile and bright, inspired by the everyday oddities and deformities of life. She likes to think of each of her creations as a character in her very own wonderland, where scale and perception are toyed with.

'The tactile quality of my work comes from my childhood spent in the Scottish countryside.  It has had a strong influence on me both in my need for textural and organic forms. I enjoy using handcrafted techniques like felting, sewing, knitting and wrapping.  My involvement with wool and felt allows me to create a closeness and cosiness that I want people to connect with.'

For September's London Fashion Week 2008, Donna Wilson's much-coveted Creatures made their debut on the catwalk. Cyril Squirrel Fox and his friends were accompanied on the stage of the show by fashion designers, Steve J and Yoni P. Now sought after by fashionistas, Cyril and his friends will also take to the catwalk once again at fashion shows in Both Paris and Korea.

Click here to contact Donna

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Woolley Wormhead (Ruth Paisley)

Hat Of Horns
Bobble Beret
Elsica Hat
Strudel Hat

Statement:

Hats are my primary focus - they are the ultimate in versatile accessories. They provide warmth and protection, but they also allow the wearer to express personality and individuality in a way that may not be possible with other garments. I have always been fascinated with Hats, from my first wool beret as a child, through to the many diverse and amazing pieces that have appeared in the many different cultures throughout time. Taught to knit at the age of 3, I have been in a life-long love affair with Textiles ever since. By the age of 10 I was starting to experiment with hand-dyeing, machine sewing, and designing and making my own clothes. By my 20s I was creating original Fair Isle and Intarsia hand-knits, using my own hand- dyed yarn. Wherever possible I have extended my learning, from silversmithing to bobbin lace-making, pattern cutting to screen printing. I studied Textile production (Bsc) at Bolton University where I gained a valuable insight into both fibre properties and behaviour. In 1999 I graduated from Goldsmiths College with a Ba (hons) in Textiles. During my time at Goldsmiths, I was able to develop my interest for 3- dimensional Textiles, bringing together both form and function. As well as producing one-off sculptural Hats, I also design and write knitting patterns, and have been published with a number of different magazines and yarn companies. I also self publish my own pattern line and to date have published 2 books.

Click here to contact Woolley Wormhead

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Woolly Buddha (Susan Scarre)

Damson Divalicious
Cream Chevron Scarf
Cobalt Silk Lace Shrug
SOS Starfish Hat

Statement:

I started knitting as a child, when my mother taught me in Chicago. It was during the 60s that the fashion of knitting with large needles and heavy gauge yarn appeared. My friend and I knitted our mini dresses and thought we were as smart as Mary Quant! I knitted from patterns over the following decades, particularly for the children, but only started designing my own accessories two years ago, when my daughter came up with her original hat design and I was inspired. For about a year my style evolved into what it is now. I design statement piece accessories in premium yarns that I source worldwide. Versatility is important when designing, as my pieces aren’t the cheapest out there, so I use styling pins and metal rings to offer several different looks. Another consideration is how a person feels when wearing a Woolly Buddha. I want my customers to feel special, regardless of age, size or shape. My pieces need to be practical yet slightly decadent, like the Divalicious stole. I absolutely love the designing process – a mathematical puzzle to solve. And working with different yarns is also a joy, each type having its own characteristics, particularly the hand-spun, hand-dyed varieties.

Click here to contact Woolly Buddha

Click here for website and here for designs on Ravelry


 


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