‘Self-taught student of the tweed tradition weaving all-wool garments in landscape abstractions on a wooden loom, with earthen, ethical yarns.
Hailing from Dartmoor and chasing the spirit of the Celtic corners in knotted cowls (~£150), tasselled scarves (~£190), generous shawls (~£350), wholesome blankets (£400-£1600) and sturdy rugs (£800-£1800): functional poetry that brings the outdoors in, and lasts a lifetime.
Plain weave shows off the character of local and native breed wool for striking, simple cloth; or straightforward diagonal twill makes a shot effect in cushioned fabric with good drape. Neat hand-stitching and decorative knotting ensure a polished finish.
Mine is slow cloth made meticulously by hand using lowest-carbon tools and methods – an heirloom fabric and a political statement both.’
This is the blurb and these are the photos that won me a place in the highly selective #digitalcraftfestival on March 26-28th. This is normally a physical event with gourmet food and gypsy swing in Bovey Tracey, Cheltenham or Bath, England. However, this year 150 very fine professional makers from across the globe will be talking, listening, demonstrating and running craft workshops online. Here’s my These Isles profile: https://www.digitalcraftfestival.co.uk/These-Isles/Exhibitor/
I may also host some Zoom sessions over the three days, which will be just like a physical craft fair: I will be at my stall at preset times and anyone can stop by, say hello and ask questions. My normal Etsy shop will be open alongside, but it will be rearranged to highlight my newest work – that which is currently on the loom (actually I’ve got two looms on the go at once just now; if only I had some elves). It will be nice to see familiar faces, put new faces to old names, and see new names and faces as well, so do come and say hi. I’ll announce my opening hours in my next blog post, as well as on Facebook.
I’ve a few more really exciting news items to share with you, at least two of them relating to this event, but I will save those for my next blog posts, to appear in the next ten days or so.
Meantime back to that blurb, and especially ‘a political statement’: I constantly have to re-articulate the political complexities of craft economics. I first wrote about it in depth here, but here is that political statement a nutshell:
To buy one expensive-feeling, handmade garment in support of a local artisan instead of spending the same money on, say, two transcontinental garments or five fast fashion imports, is to say YES to sustainability and NO to the race to the bottom. YES to an economics of integrity and NO to an economics of exploitation. YES to local resilience and NO to infinite growth. YES to hand-powered craft and NO to the production line machine!
The problem? Our trickle-up monetary system creates artificial scarcity among most of us so that we can barely spare the money for each other’s labour when our neighbour needs the same high wage to live on as we do in our costly ‘rich’ countries. So our neighbour’s prices feel unaffordably high while the Bangladeshi collapsing-factory worker – or even the Leicester Covid-ridden-factory worker – receives a pittance per hour which undercuts our neighbour’s ethical business. (Get the Bangladeshi or Leicester worker OUT of the collapsing or Covid-ridden factory and back onto a plot of land of their own, I say, where the land will be a far better guardian than their boss or his financiers.)
The other problem? Our currrent monetary system does not allow for a steady state economics, instead compelling ad nauseum consumerism. Without growth, typically a business goes bust.
The solution? A different monetary system. You know I’m working on it.
Meantime I invite you to buy one expensive-feeling, handmade garment in support of a (relatively) local artisan instead of spending the same money on cheaper, dirtier imports.
For craft not for profit, see you March 26-28th!