After completing my training at Cambridge School of Art and London College of Fashion, I embarked on a professional career based on my interest in fabrics and the crafting of materials into artefacts and clothing.
I was employed in my first freelance position as a Costume Maker for the television series 'Spitting Image', a job which continued for a further six years, alongside other freelance work in the film and television industry.
For a substantial part of my career, I freelanced for 'Jim Henson's Creature Shop' (the London base of the Jim Henson Company), working on a wide variety of Film and TV projects including 'Farscape', 'The Flintstones', 'Muppet Treasure Island', '101 Dalmatians', and 'Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy'.
For more than 20 years my freelance career has brought work on projects which have ranged from feature film work, to making more conventional costumes for opera singers and ballet dancers for the stage. Commissions for the Stage include costumes for English National Ballet , Scottish Ballet and the Royal Opera House.
Since moving to Scotland, I have set up my own studio and designed this collection of bags, purses and textiles which I hand-make to order alongside my freelance costume work.
Designing the Bags and Purses
My work as a Costume Designer and Maker has also provided me with a huge selection of fabrics, and embroidered and beaded textiles. These items, together with an extensive library of costume and textile books provide a wealth of reference material, which I am constantly looking through when I start to design a collection.
For instance, my ‘Ballet’ purse design (left) was inspired by two of the vintage purses I have collected. The first is a Victorian black velvet purse – I really like the shape and size of it, and the method of construction, whereby the velvet is gathered onto a half-moon shaped yoke. The second is a vintage purse given to me by my mother. The vivid colour on the inside of the front flap, and the dense overall pattern of the embroidery are the influences here. The resulting ‘Ballet’ purse is designed for the contemporary market, and uses modern materials, but still preserves a romantic, vintage look to it.