I make textile collages which bring together old and often dis-intergrating textiles with hand stitched marks. I generate interesting surface textures and fragments for these collages through unpicking and deconstructing quilts, garments, ethnic and domestic textiles rescued from charity shops. These are patched together and embellished with traditional embroidery stitches. These collages can be stand alone pieces, applied to garments, or collected within an artist's book structure.
After years of teaching in an art college, where I facilitated trends driven experimentation in print and embroidery, I have for the last fifteen years developed a practice which is based on references to historical textiles and traditional techniques. In nearly all my work I use fragments of discarded north country quilts. Using products made locally has helped me to appreciate the importance of relating to the folk traditions of my particular area and the collection and gifting of old quilts and embroideries has opened up many textile conversations about the sewing generated in domestic settings.
Through preserving the discarded and overlooked and refashioning these rescued rags in to new patchworks I hope to force the viewer to re-examine fabrics that have become flawed through wear and tear and find in them a new beauty.