Textiles

My interest in weaving goes back to when, as a secondary school student in Basle, I was given unfettered access to the handicraft teacher‘s loom during the holidays. It was the late 1980s, however, before I had my own loom. At around this time I inherited my great-grandmother‘s spinning wheel. After minimal restoration this wheel was, and still is, fully functional. On this wheel I taught myself to spin, with helpful guidance from tutors at the national centre for the furtherance of Swiss crafts (Heimatwerk, Richterswil, Zurich 1987). The character of the wheel, together with the nature of the tradition I was working in, meant that I developed the skill of spinning fine fibres from the beginning, and as a result I am known today in particular for my work with silk, linen and angora fibre. While living in England (1990 – 2008) I took further instruction in spinning from Marion Boniface and Rita Sinkkonnen Davies, and attended courses in both spinning and weaving at the Lewes Terciary College (1990/1). Additional guidance in weaving followed from Maikki Karisto, Ingrid Eggimann-Jonsson, Janet Phillips and Anna Leutert.

I am particularly fascinated by natural dyes, and one of my earliest projects was a 6m stair carpet with wool spun and dyed by myself with plants from the garden, and woven on a counter-balance loom.

More recently I have expanded my techniques by completing a course in experimental  textiles with Kim Thittichai (Northbrook College, 2005/6) and learning felting with Janice Britz. I also attended a course in tapestry weaving with Pat Johns and an introduction to Kumihimo with Jacqui Carey, both at West Dean College, Chichester. Starting in 2006 I began a three year training as a professional weaver at the Zürcher-Stalder Centre, near Berne and was awarded a diploma in 2009.

I am a member of the East Sussex Guild of Weavers, Spinners and Dyers, the UK Online Guild and the National Angora Club. I have always had a particular interest in  the Angora fibre, and the yarns and products I have produced from it have won me a number of awards, including „best in show“ for a shawl in the Bradford products show, and „best hank“ in both the London (2006) and Harrowgate (2007) shows.

I have a number of English angora rabbits producing fibre which I hand-spin to yarn for luxury garments.


Hand-spinning courses

In 2009, at the instigation of a textile firm, Zürcher Stalder, I devised and developed a two year modular course in hand-spinning. In the 10 modules students learn how to deal with various fibres, from wool, flax, silk through to milk-protein fibre and recycled PET bottles. The full details are only in German at present. Click here to learn more.

For other courses click here.