The world is an increasingly fast and digital place, where the origins of materials are often lost in the mechanised process of making. However, within my hand woven textiles, I go back to origins of the yarn, which is the animal in the field. Despite using discontinued cones of commercial yarn, I combine this with the traditional skill of hand spinning from the fleeces of rare breed and pet flocks of sheep. The hand spun yarn has a non mechanised character, which often retains an energy and life not apparent in machine made fibre. Each woven item incorporates hand spun yarn from an individual sheep and the identity of the animal is an important aspect of the work. Frequently these sheep or alpaca have been given names and are owned by farmers and small holders who passionately wish to preserve a historical breed or to care for their flock in an ethical way. The weave structures in my work enhance the tactile character of the hand spun yarn and create textures, which give the cloth its unique character. Colour is predominantly achieved by using the natural colour of the fleece and the use of plant dyed yarns.
Design inspiration comes from the East Yorkshire Coast. I am attracted to the rugged chalk cliffs, together with the boulders and pebbles found on the shore line. The netting of the abandoned crab pots influence my weave structures and these are combined with textures reminiscent of the weathered wood of the fishing cobles and the linear strata of the cliffs. The soft colours of the plant dyed yarns reflect the cold North Sea with its seaweed and algae ridden rock pools.