Crafts Council Hothouse: Heather Shields

hshieldsloomHeather Shields is a woven textile designer based in Glasgow, who has recently been selected on the Crafts Council Hothouse scheme.

This scheme  is a “free programme of professional support for craft makers, delivered by the Crafts Council and partners and run over the course of six months” (ref: crafts council website). 39 Makers have been selected for 2015 including previously featured on The Weaveshed, weavers Rita Parniczky and Nadia Anne Ricketts.

Graduating with a BA (Hons) in Textile Design from Glasgow School of Art, Heather  went on to pursue an internship with Margo Selby to assist in weaving samples for her book “Contemporary Weaving Patterns”.

On returning to Scotland, Heather took up a part time post as weave technician at Glasgow School of Art. A year later she joined Glasgow Clyde College as a weave tutor and began writing the curriculum for their first weave course in partnership with Heriot Watt university.

Alongside her work in education, she developed a new collection of fabrics and was determined to start up her own textile design business. She participated in Nightriders, an 8 week pilot business programme created by service design company, Snook, and began showing her work at local exhibitions. In December 2014 she was selected to join the Craft Council’s Hothouse scheme for emerging makers.

Her designs combine playful colour palettes with bold pattern and quality craftsmanship. A fascination with contrasts, beauty in the unexpected and unusual juxtaposition has always been at the forefront of her design work. She explores these elements through carefully considered yarn choices and specialist construction techniques to create textiles that celebrate the charm of everyday objects. Inspired by childhood puzzles and games, her latest collection of contemporary homeware uses super soft lambswool and a double cloth construction to create luxurious cushions with a strong graphic edge. Heather’s fabrics evoke a sense of fun and are destined to be covetable statement pieces within the home.

puzzle.stackText & images: Heather Shield

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