Carol H.

My love of textiles began as early as I can remember. It was sparked off by seeing beautiful, magical patchwork quilts with their sensational colours and textures. I was captivated by the names of the fabrics too - moygashell, taffeta, grosgrain, organza... My family encouraged and embraced creativity and I, along with my three older siblings, were always making things. I was immersed in the richness of what was going on around me. I knitted, made patchwork, fabric boxes, collaged bags. But my life took a different turn when, at age 18, I had the chance to work for a writer on a lecture tour of the United States, then a film director in New York, followed by jobs in publishing, the theatre and animation in London. But I always found time to take textile courses, culminating with three inspirational ones with Nancy Crow which motivated me to do a textile design degree at Central St Martins college in London where I specialised in weave. So finally I became a weaver and I love being part of the long line of weavers that began thousands of years ago.

I like to work with silk, cotton and bamboo yarns which I often dye myself. I usually begin a design by working from my own photographs, sometimes ones from the past. There are many stages to the weaving process; dyeing the yarns, making the warps, threading the loom. They are very time consuming and exacting. But once the threads are on the loom wondrous things start to appear as you play with the warp (vertical threads) and the weft (horizontal threads) and the almost infinite ways they can intersect and interact.

My focus is to try to create beautiful things that will in some way enrich people’s lives. My preoccupation at the moment is with gradations of colour, perspective, the way light changes in the landscape, space, simplicity in complexity and beauty.