Company Profile: The Aviary Studio

Founded by Sarah Podlesny, The Aviary Studio is a UK based hand weaving studio and design consultancy providing fabric ideas and development to the high-street and high-end fashion and interior markets.

Striving to fulfil the constant demand for newness in an age where copying has become standard practice, The Aviary Studio‘s main aim is to inspire.

Sarah graduated in from Central Saint Martins in 2010 with a BA in Woven Textiles, and also participated in the Texprint that year, winning the Prize for Innovation.

Since then, she has experienced and worked in many areas of the industry, including with suppliers, brands, and studios. Sarah spent 4 years designing, weaving and selling for Laura Miles of Woven Studio, and during that time she was also designing jacquards for the womenswear line at Vanners Silk Mill.

Her initial studio practice experience, gained her an understanding of the technical and creative possibilities and constraints of woven fabric, and a great deal of experience selling, liaising and problem solving with clients.

From her time working for a mill, she learnt the invaluable skill of translating hand woven swatches into mill adaptations, and expanded her understanding of weave to industrial and computerized level, as well as hand woven.

She then spent two years working for Zara Home in Spain, designing their woven and knitted blankets and liaising with suppliers. Working for a huge brand, she learnt about the workability and cost limitations of developing a hand woven swatch into an industrially made, sellable product. It was her responsibility to balance cost without compromising the quality or the design.

Now, as a studio once more, she utilizes her industrial knowledge to produce a collection that is mindful of those constraints, but inspiring in equal measure.

​Each season, extensive trend and materials research is gathered, interpreted and applied through the medium of hand weaving, in order to offer a collection of directional and relevant design ideas that are both inspiring and workable in equal measure. This enables clients to purchase ideas that are relevant and ready to use – to have something tactile to work with that has already come into form.

Inspiration is constantly being drawn from a variety of sources, including past, current and forecasted trends in the materials, arts, fashion, product and design world, often experimenting in the learning and reworking of both traditional and new weaving techniques.

The swatches are a mix of qualities, weights, textures and patterns depending on the season, serving as inspiration for a variety of different products across the fashion and interior markets, depending on the context in which they are being viewed.

Each swatch is produced only once, ensuring that the same design cannot be sold twice, giving the client full exclusivity. The Aviary Studio provides full technical information for each swatch, to aid the development process with mills and suppliers.

Besides seasonal swatching, The Aviary Studio offers design and technical expertise to brands, to help them to realise the possibilities around their initial ideas or moodboards, from developing a colour palette, trialing and refining fabric ideas on loom, and the production of small quantities.

Text & Image from The Aviary Studio

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