Stone Creek Silk started like so many art/craft businesses, as a hobby. I had been told at school that I couldn’t draw and I believed it – as you do at that age. Many years later I was dragged along to an art materials exhibition by a friend and saw someone demonstrating silk painting. The colours she was using were amazing – rich vibrant colour on a shimmering fabric.
My friend and I bought small bottles of around half a dozen colours and a kit of other bits. I’d like to say that I didn’t look back after this but after I had gone the rounds of making shapes with white outlines, using gutta/outliner, applying colour and throwing a lot of salt around, I ‘stuck’ for quite a long time. I had to get some help so I enrolled, with great nervousness, for GCSE Art and Design at nightclass.
My tutor was absolutely amazing – a lady called Sue Spivey who, when I told her I couldn’t draw said simply that I hadn’t been taught to draw. She then proceeded to do so …. It was a wonderful course and set me up with the basic skills I needed to progress.
I’ve since worked with techniques from batik and shibori to various dyeing methods, including indigo dyeing. I use a number of different screen printing techniques including the wonderful breakdown screen printing, shown in the picture above. For many years I’ve produced cyanotypes on fabric, a photographic-like process which gives beautiful prussian blue and white images. This was the subject of my first book and is still a firm favourite. I also use digital images and design methods in my work. Since I spent 20 years working with IT I’m very comfortable with combining digital techniques and textiles and this formed the subject of my second book, Digital Imagery on Fabric.
I’ve been teaching textile workshops for something like 10 years now in various locations and for a variety of Guilds and Groups as well as in my own studio here, Stone Creek Barn. I’ve been privileged to learn from some of the best tutors around – long may it continue – and I thoroughly enjoy passing on my knowledge and experience to my students. I get such a ‘buzz’ from seeing what they achieve.
Iain, my husband and ‘carrier of heavy items’, and I live in East Yorkshire on the bank of the Humber estuary in Stone Creek House – hence the name …