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Bute Fabrics Ltd: a company profile

031Bute Fabrics was established in 1947 by the 5th Marquess of Bute in a philanthropic move to provide employment for returning WW2 service personnel.

Originally weaving fabrics for haute couture apparel, in the 1970s the business moved to contract upholstery fabrics, championing the use of wool for both the domestic and export markets.

Today, Bute Fabrics is still owned by the Bute Family, with the 7th Marquess currently in charge. Bute’s reputation has been built upon producing high quality, durable, contemporary fabrics for the auditoria, hospitality, contract and aviation markets. Offering both a standard range of products and the in-house design of bespoke fabrics, Bute’s fabrics are installed in key projects around the world such as Hong Kong Airport, the Royal Festival Hall, the Sage Gateshead, the Queen’s Galleries in Buckingham Palace and the Palace of Holyrood, the London Excel Centre and Yale University.

Bute Fabrics offer a commission weaving service, weaving on Dobbys 16 shaft. Yarn types: worsted yarns, woollen spun, chunky, and boucles (max .45N). They have a large yarn bank including 2/27, 2/18 and 2/13.5nm. Stock dyed, hank dyed and piece dyed.

They offer bespoke design and weaving at no extra charge, 1.4 wide normally but up to almost 2m, normally 50m minimums depending on weights/compositions for apparel, upholstery and curtaining. Full contact details can be found here in The Weave Shed in the suppliers and services: commission weavers section.
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‘Weave’ symposium review: Stacey Harvey – Brown

Eleanor Pritchard‘Weave’ symposium Sat 11th May 2013
Stroud International Textile Festival

A weave symposium now seems to be an annual event at Select 2013 in Stroud, Glos and enthusiasm for it has not dipped if attendance was any judge. In fact, the event could have sold twice as many tickets if space had allowed, which is heartening for all connected with weave.

This year’s event was chaired by Philippa Brock, with speakers grouped in twos; Laura Thomas paired with Deidre Wood, Eleanor Pritchard with Tim Parry Williams, and Nadia-Ann Ricketts alongside Helga Matos with a final presentation from Philippa. Q&A sessions followed each pairing with a final session of questions to the entire speaker panel.

Laura Thomas, in common with the other speakers, is a portfolio weaver, mixing commission and personal work with industrial collaborations. A regular at the Select 2013 she talked about developments of her Loose Thread acrylic pieces from the original concept of capturing the beauty of unwoven warp effects in resin blocks to now including unwoven weave techniques, such as threads creating colour-and-weave effects, and clasped weft tapestry techniques turned 90o to create unwoven clasped warp ikat effects.

Laura has developed the work further to incorporate wall pieces mounted on barrel fixings to allow for the play of shadows on the wall behind her pieces. Through her public art commissions, the ideas behind the resin pieces have grown both larger and more complex, with both threads and fabric sandwiched between panes of glass, starting with a Museumaker project at The Beaney in Canterbury where Laura had a series of 3 internal windows to address which joined the old museum at The Beaney with its new development. This was the first time Laura had used glass for her work and has led to further collaborations with the glass company. Another public art commission was for the Cynon Valley Hospital where she created 9 panels of loose threads picking up the colours from the hospital’s way-finding scheme. A recent commission from Llanelli is for a glass canopy for the town centre, in which she has incorporated industrial fibres such as carbon thread, folded steel mesh, folded copper mesh (which give moiré effects) and light-reflective yarns. An older commission, to create a presentation gift for the Australian Cricket Board, incorporated narrow bands of double-sided fabric which were twisted within a curved resin shape informed by the spin of a cricket ball. This linked neatly with the following speaker, who also features narrow bands in her work.
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The petition request the Government to reconsider the proposal that craft no longer to be considered part of the creative industries, as part of the 30 April proposed changes set out in Classifying and Measuring the Creative Industries consultation paper.

The craft industry and those who work in it, over 88,000 people making a £3bn annual contribution to the UK economy, are inherently and by their very nature creative. The petition wants the UK Government to stop ignoring The Crafts Council and the thousands of mostly sole trading craftsmen and women who consider themselves to be and indeed are creatives.

The Government should be proud & supportive of the vibrant creative craft industry & celebrate the unique, rich diversity of skills & craftsmanship, not seek to declassify, dismiss & undermine it. Calling an IT Business Analyst a creative, but refusing the title to a skilled potter or ceramicist shows the level of understanding that those proposing the change have of what is and isn’t creative.

If you agree with this then please sign the petition & lobby your MP.

GoodWeave student rug design competition

Layout 1The GoodWeave Student Rug Design Competition deadline is fast approaching, all entries need to be in by  17th May 2013. This year the theme is ‘Interpreting Fashion’ and the brief has been developed by Roger Oates, the acclaimed flooring designer.

This is the sixth time this prestigious competition has run and is sponsored by WovenGround and Jacaranda Carpets; both are GoodWeave Partners and active supporters of the work that GoodWeave does internationally to eradicate the exploitation of children in the production of rugs.

The competition is open to full-time, UK design students, aged 18 or over where the winning students will be given the opportunity to promote their talents and the winner will also receive a £300 design fee. The winning designs will be exhibited at Decorex International, the leading interior design exhibition in London, in September – a fabulous opportunity for students to experience the commercial design world.

The judges this year include the designer Ella Doran, flooring designer Roger Oates and design journalist Katrina Burroughs.

The GoodWeave Rug design Competition attracts significant media coverage and in 2011 the winner successfully launched her freelance career following her success in the competition.

Full details for the competition are available to download from the GoodWeave website. Please download the brief, competition rules and an entry form. Continue reading →