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Online Exhibition: Complexity 2020 | Innovations in Weaving

Complexity 2020 | Innovations in Weaving

Complex Weavers is an international organisation of weavers dedicated to expanding the boundaries of handweaving. The group encourages members to develop their own creative style, and to inspire others through research, documentation, and innovative ideas.

Its members challenge their skills and imagination by sharing information and innovations with fellow weavers worldwide – both directly and through study groups, Seminars, Complex Weavers Journal, and biennial juried exhibition Complexity.

Every two years members are invited to submit new work for jurying, and the final selections are formally exhibited to the public as Complexity. This year the physical exhibition planned for Knoxville, Tennessee, has been replaced with a virtual exhibition, which has the added benefit of being accessible to a world-wide audience.

The show presents recent textile creations that bear within them some form of complexity, whether they have been woven on a dobby, treadle, table or Jacquard loom. All were made by hand and designed by humans, and all exhibit technical excellence. Complexity 2020 opens at midday on 29 June 2020. Continue reading →

Cockpit Arts: Festival of Making

Cockpit Arts will be hosting their annual Festival of Making event from Friday June 19thJune 21st 2020. Running over three days, this free virtual celebration will feature 65 events run by over 80 of London’s leading makers. The festival is taking place across Zoom, Instagram and Facebook.

Featuring a range of workshops, panel discussions, live demos and studio tours, all led by some of London’s most exciting makers. Three woven textile artist and designers will be delivering the following exciting events across the weekend:

Friday June 21st  at 7pm Nadia-Anne Ricketts, an award winning woven textile designer, invites you to ‘Tune In’ to a live virtual immersive, meditation sound bath experience, where you’ll be taken on an inward exploratory journey to the field of infinite creative possibilities, by playing the sound vibrations of the gong woven into the frequencies of crystal bowls

Saturday, 20th June at 12pm. Vicky Cowin invites you to virtually visit her Deptford studio. You will see  Vicky’s loom and hear about her experience as one of several Cockpit makers supported by a Clothworkers’ Company Award.

Sunday, 21st June at 12pm. Weaver Kendall Clarke, working from home in a temporary studio, will show you how you can discover local colour from your doorstep in this introduction to natural dyes from summer plants, weeds and leaves. Continue reading →

Company Profile: Pink House by Rebecca Cole

Pink House by Rebecca Cole collection is championing the traditions of Aso-oke hand weaving in the Yoruba region of Nigeria to the Interior Design Industry. The influx of cheap, imported textiles and mass-produced European style clothing has drastically diminished the artisan weaving industry in Nigeria leaving fewer weaving communities able to make a living from their craft.

By taking an innovative approach to using the beautiful striped and patterned woven strips, as a form of passementerie for interior design, textile designer Rebecca Cole has identified a way to support the traditions of weaving that she first encountered in the 1990’s.

Whilst on an introductory visit to her husband’s family in Nigeria “I fell in love with not only the magic of Nigeria but also the sense of heritage and family contained in the textiles that had been created and safeguarded by my mother-in-law from every family event. There is family history attached to each piece of As0-oke she has kept.”

The traditions of Yoruba weaving date back to the 10th and 12th Century in Nigeria. The Aso-oke cloth is traditionally woven by men in the Southwestern region of Nigeria on horizontal looms. As early as the 17th Century, Aso-oke cloth was recorded as a valuable trading commodity with the British. Continue reading →

Awards: Cockpit Arts | Currently on hold – see below for details

Cockpit Arts currently has four Awards open for application for talented makers to join the Cockpit Arts community. Each of these Awards will provide a subsidised or free space to a Maker, and this round has two open discipline Awards so it really is open to everyone. Currently these awards are on hold due to Covid 19 – they will reopen once the situation has changed but please continue to register your interest by emailing Maxine Clark maxine@cockpitarts.com

There are no age limits or educational requirements (except for the Clothworkers’ Award) they just want to see craft skill and a real drive to turn their passion into their professional business.

This Award round equates to approximately £19,000 worth of generous support from our funders and Cockpit are ready to match that and invest in 8 new Makers to join their community. Alongside the free or subsidised space they will receive a workshop programme tailored to Awardees and be assigned one of their in-house business coaches for regular 1 to 1 coaching.

All of the Awards are for at least 12 months, with the Clothworkers’ Award offering up to three years of support on a sliding scale.

Awards at Cockpit Arts open for application.

We are delighted to announce that there are  Cockpit Arts Awards now open for applications. All Awards comprise business support provided by Cockpit Arts as well as subsidised studio space for one year.

The Cockpit Arts / The Clothworkers’ Company Awards
Open to graduates within the last five years, these awards aim to assist weavers to set up in business. Weavers can be working in any form, for example, creating products; visual art; working with mills and making samples for industry.
Deadline for applications: 5pm, Tuesday 14 April 2020

The Cockpit Arts / Clear Insurance Award
Aims to support professional makers who have been in business for less than three years and aspire to develop their craft business in any craft discipline.
Deadline for applications: 5pm, Friday 17 April 2020

The Cockpit Arts / Newby Trust Craft Excellence Awards
Aims to support two makers to practice their individual craft at a key stage in their skill development, to grow as an independent maker and to support their craft business to achieve financial sustainability.
Deadline for applications: 5pm, Thursday 14 May 2020

Further details and application forms are available to download from their website – https://cockpitarts.com/awards-bursaries/, or please contact maxine@cockpitarts.com for further information or to express an interest.

Image: Jacob Monk

Profile: Alicia Rowbotham

Alicia Rowbotham, a recent graduate of the BA (Hons) Textile Design course at Central Saint Martins is a designer amongst a growing group of emerging talent exploring the relevance of fast fashion against the environmental destruction it ensues.

Working within the fashion industry as a stylist for a leading online fashion retailer throughout her degree gave her great insight into the destructive cycle of fast fashion and disposable products. This provoked her to create the collection ‘Waste not, want not’.  The collection aims to emphasise and encourage collaboration between manufacturers and designers to harness the potential of textile mill waste and utilise this resource for the benefit of both the industry and the designer.

The collection consists of handwoven body adornments and fashion accessories made entirely from textile industry waste including reams of beautiful waste silk, miscellaneous fibres and ‘deadstock’ materials from textile mills in the UK.

The collection was shortlisted for the LVMH x MAISON/0 Green Trail awards 2019 as well as The Mills Fabrica sustainability prize 2019. The collection was then shown as part of the London Design festival exhibition ‘Designing in Turbulent Times’ amongst other provoking Central Saint Martin’s graduate projects. Rowbotham finished 2019 being featured as ‘one to watch’ in the winter issue of textile publication, Cover magazine.

Starting the new year, pieces from the ‘Waste not, Want not’ collection were showcased as part of the innovation hub in the Sustainable Angles 9th Future Fabrics Expo; the world’s largest showcase of sustainable materials for the future fashion industry.

Rowbotham continues to pursue her fascination for a more circular fashion and textile industry through the aid of craft and design working in collaboration with Evan James Design to create interior accessories for the Surface Design Show 2020. Continue reading →

Profile: Orkney Cloth Company

Orkney Cloth Company
Orkney had a rich heritage of textile weaving which had been lost for over 30 years, and the Orkney Cloth Company is hoping to revive it once again.

Weaving in Orkney completely disappeared in the mid-1970s, when the two mills, Argarden and Sclaters closed. Orkney’s cloth was once more renown than Harris Tweed, well regarded for its softness and lightness, and sold all over the world. Unlike Harris Tweed, without a well known tradition of weaving, Orkney tweed weavers were able to create new and contemporary designs, using bold accent colours.

However, by the mid-1970’s the industry had moved on, with the arrival of ready to wear garments and synthetic materials. Their reluctance to invest in wider looms meant that Harris Tweed had the competitive advantage, and both mills closed down.

The Orkney Cloth Company was started by India Johnson, who aims to revive the industry once again. After arriving in Orkney on a graduate weaving placement with ScotGrad and Orkney Creative Hub in October 2018, she began teaching hand weaving.

Continue reading →

Exhibition: Ruth Holt

Ruth Holt is based in  a studio in Halesworth, Suffolk.  Since 2012 she has exhibited regularly with Suffolk Craft Society and other galleries including the Scottish Gallery and Shipyard Gallery in Wivenhoe.

Ruth designed and then commissioned Whitchurch Silk Mill, a traditional Victorian Mill,  to weave cloth for a limited edition of scarves for the Society of Apothecaries (a City Livery Company). Continue reading →

Woven Jacquard Engineered Garment Research: Graysha Audren | Maike Jansen

Graduate Research Weaver Profiles: Graysha Audren | Maike Jansen

Seamless by Graysha Audren
Textile designer, Graysha Audren is a recent weave graduate of Central Saint Martins with a focus on sustainable innovation.  She believes good designers are problem solvers at heart with the power to invoke change, disrupt systems, and design out inefficiencies. The textile industry interweaves global politics, economics, trade, society, and business. The industry is a web of complicated supply chains where sustainability needs design-led systemic transparency. To change the entire system and to affect real change, Graysha focuses holistically on questioning inefficient and unsustainable systems, starting at the beginning: the making of the cloth.

Her current project, Seamless, exhibited at the London Design Festival in partnership with Maison/0 and LVMH, proposes a revolutionary way of seamlessly weaving clothing for material waste reduction and supply chain efficiency. Continue reading →

TexSelect 2019: Weavers

TexSelect are showing at Première Vision Designs, Paris 17th – 19th Sept 2019.

TexSelect’s aim is to select, mentor and promote the UK’s most talented newly graduated textile designers, providing an opportunity for realistic development, and a vital bridge between higher education and the real, commercial world.

Those selected for this unique mentorship programme are introduced to buyers, press and sponsors at the TexSelect London Preview and at Europe’s leading fabric fair, Première Vision Paris, gaining exceptional first hand experience of the industry. There are also opportunities to intern with some of Italy’s finest mills and manufacturers, to be trained on specialist CAD software, and to have work selected for a curated interiors collection. TexSelect’s Hero Mentor scheme carries the support forward, linking designers with industry professionals who provide ongoing career mentorship.

Many TexSelect alumni now enjoy high-profile creative roles within the international textile, fashion and interior design industries.

Alongside the show there will be presentation of the TexSelect Prizes for Colour, Fashion, Pattern and Interiors. Also presentation of The Woolmark Company TexSelect Award, and the Marks & Spencer TexSelect Fashion Fabric Award.

The presentation takes place on 18th Sept at 15.30 (3.30pm), followed by a reception for sponsors, press, buyers and guests.

Venue: Première Vision Designs, Hall 5, Première Vision Paris, Parc d’Expositions de Paris-Nord, Villepinte.

TexSelect is delighted to confirm that going forward Première Vision Group, organiser of the world’s leading sourcing events for fashion professionals, will continue its support for emerging textile designers through an agreement with TexSelect that will build on the talent search programme’s legacy with an international perspective from 2020. Click on this link for more information

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Competition: Wool Innovation Prize

£10,000 Wool Prize: The last chance to apply for the Wool Innovation Prize 2019 .

Worth up to £10,000, the Prize is an annual award offered by The Woolmen and The Company of Merchants of the Staple of England, in association with The Campaign for Wool. It’s available to the individual who shows the most innovative use of wool in any commercially viable application.

The prize is open to anyone who:

  • Works predominantly with wool
  • Displays genuine innovation
  • Offers a commercially viable application
  • Has a clear plan for developing your ideas further

Applications close on June 30th 2019, so if you use wool in a way that the industry would love to hear about, apply online today!

SUBMIT YOUR APPLICATION NOW

Background
The Worshipful Company of Woolmen, one of the oldest livery companies in the City, and The Company of the Merchants of the Staple of England, a national livery company based in York, believe that they should do more for the industry from whence they came, namely the Wool Industry. Both have very long pedigrees going back to 1180 for the Woolmen and 1283 for the Staple.

The Industry has suffered long term decline in the UK over many years. There are now some signs that the industry is beginning to show an upturn and both Companies wish to recognise this and make a contribution to supporting innovation in the use and application of wool.

The Prize
The prize will be awarded annually to any individual who shows the most innovative use of wool in any application that is considered commercially viable and subject to the project being of sufficient originality and quality. Open to individuals using wool in apparel, non-apparel, agricultural, horticultural, medical, and industrial applications.

The winner will need to be able to show that the innovation will be developed from the United Kingdom, although the nationality of the individual is irrelevant.

SUBMIT YOUR APPLICATION NOW