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I had an incredible opportunity this Summer to work with a freelance textile artist in Scotland. This involved being given my own brief focusing on paisley prints, and tones of blue for a transitional Autumn/Winter market. We worked through the whole process:

  1. Research
  2. Developing print designs using Adobe PhotoShop
  3. Printing designs out onto tracing paper
  4. Exposing silkscreens using printed designs
  5. Mixing ink colours
  6. Printing fabrics
  7. Pattern cutting and making up fabrics into garment fronts

I really enjoyed learning to screen print, and seeing the prints coming to life in full colour. Here are some of the prints:

And some more:

And an overview of the final 6 dresses:

The whole experience was really eye opening, giving me a real insight into the industry – tight time scales (3 weeks rather than 3 months!) and the reality they you only get paid for the designs that sell…

The designs have now been sent off to an agent so I will wait and see if they hit the mark.

As a stepping stone to a full-blown grown-up jumper I have been working on a gorgeous hand knit  tank top – Audrey – from Louisa Harding’s Winter’s Muse Classics book. I have been knitting it up in a bright purple Kimono Angora Pure yarn which is sooo soft. I adapted the pattern to use circular knitting needles for the body and worked the body very quickly.

HOWEVER… once I had finished off the neckline I found that it was too wide around the waist – I was definitely going for more of an hour glass vintage look. As a result it has been sitting in my work in progress draw for sometime. Fortunately I then started reading Elizabeth Zimmerman’s Knitting without tears and gathered up all my courage to reshape the garment with the aid of my sewing machine. This involved tight zig zag stitching along both seams and then taking a deep breath cutting off the excess, and over-locking the edge. Miraculously it worked:

plain-tanktop.jpg

The advantage of this approach was that I had the trimmings from the cut offs left to add extra detailing to the design. Apparently bows are coming back in so…

tank-top-with-bow.jpg