Saturday, 31 July 2010


Graduation has finally come and gone. I can't believe it is all over 3 years of me living in England and I am now back in Northern Ireland and not a clue what i should do!!!

Exhibition and workshops

Our exhibiton was a successful week lots of family, friends and vistors came to see our work. Some of my friends and I organised workshops to go alongside the students work that was exhibited. I created a story telling corner for children under the age of 6 where we read my children's book and translated my black and white drawings into textiles using glue and material, very messy but turned out to be really fun and the children seemed to really enjoy the workshop. I hope to organise more workshops or volunteer to help others in their workshops as I found over the years at university that I loved to work with children. Below is a photo of me and my work as well as a photo of My workshop.

Final Project

After being inspired by illustrators such as Emily Gravett and Louise Gardiner I decided to create a children's book. The inspiration for the story line came from my friend Rachael Ball finding a mouse in her bedroom, giving me the idea of creating a story about 2 mice families and a cat Mr Charles. Each character was inspired by my friends characteristics which help the character come to life. I started illustrating the story and started experimenting on how to add embroidery into my book. After experimenting I decided to create the backgrounds of my book on the amaya machine and to have the character seperate from the book so children can interact with the book. My characters would be traditional hand stitched to add texture. Below are some pictures.

Louise Gardiner

After the harbour project i started to research illustrators. One of my favourites was Louise Gardiner. She is an artist who recently exhibited her work in The Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair and The knit and Stitch show in Harrogate. In 2009 the Embroidery magazine wrote an article on this artist, the title of the artile was "Bring me Sunshine" (embroiery, Sept/Oct 2009, p28) which I think sums up what Gardiner is trying to bring to people when they view her work.

She uses similar embroidery techniques to mine such as applique, freehand machine and traditional hand stitching. Gardiner also created illustrations for a book called Saggy Boobs to teach mothers about breastfeedng and the myths that surround breastfeeding. This is what sets Gardiner apart from other artists, her ability to educate but still create humour making others feel more at easy.

She created this book by going round the Manchester region to investigate and interview women at their post-natal classes to help uncover the most commonly believed myths around breastfeeding. She wanted to help tackle these beliefs for mums 'to' be, with warmth and wit and encourge woman to breastfeed (Gardiner, 2008)

Saturday, 5 June 2010

The joys of second year!!

Second year was a difficult year as I couldn’t find my style. I started experimenting; my first samples became more abstract using the theme harbour creating my own rope using mixed media such as string, plastic, wool etc I found I didn’t enjoy creating these piece as a result I took a break from sampling and just started to draw. Below are some drawings on the harbour.

First year at university!!

After collage I decided to go to university in Huddersfield to do textile craft. First year was experimenting in the different specialism which are knit, embroidery, weave and print. At the end of the year we got to specialise in one of the areas. I had a hard time deciding between print and embroidery but as you can problem guess I decided on embroidery. Below is a photo of my embroidery work in first year technique called appliqué and the fabric has been hand dyed.

Friday, 4 June 2010


I have had this blog for quite some time I wanted to talk about me as an embroiderer/illustrator what inspires me but I had no idea what to write or where to start but as my mother always says ‘it’s best to start at the beginning’. I went to college in Newry called Southern Regional Collage I completed a BT in Design and a foundation in Art and Design. During these three years the modules included where graphics, product, fashion, fine art, ceramics, textile, jewellery, print, photography and interior design. Below are some pictures of the work I created on this course.

Textiles class:

This piece I created in my textile craft class. Inspiration for this piece was Sally Freshwater who creates contemporary textile pieces for interiors, the colour was inspired by a photo I found of a warehouse with different coloured windows see first photo concept board and the shapes inspired by the Sydney opera house.


The brief was to use the sketches we created when visiting the Ulster museum to create a black and white poster.

Fine Art:

At the start of the fine art class we were given images which we had to draw in different media. The first image was created in charcoal, 2nd in oil bar and the 3rd in oil paint but creating warm and cold greys a lesion on how to mix colour.

In photography class I learnt how to use an SRL camera and how to develop photograph my favourite was my black and white photos. These photographs I have put up are photos I have taken of my class mate but changes in Photoshop.

Final show:
After experimenting in the different areas on these courses I decided to specialize in textile as I loved the tactile quality you can create. For my final show I designed bed cover and curtains for a little girl’s room. It was created using appliqué and embellishing using bead and sequence. See photo below.