Rebecca Connolly Design
I run a weave design studio and teaching space in the countryside 4 miles north of Cirencester. I set this up after graduating in Textile design in 2015. I work on vintage table and floor looms: the heritage and craft skills of my discipline are an integral part of my practice.
I design woven textiles for clients who retail their own products; these are woven by commissioned weaving mills in the South West and Wales. My designs are for wool but due to cost and repeatability of products, the dyes used to date have been synthetic, however I will only work in British wools.
I am constantly seeking to improve the provenance of my designs and this is the direction I would like to focus on going forward – a recent project was for the wool of a pure bred local flock of rare breed sheep and the designs I created only used the two natural un-dyed colours of their fleece and ensured the entire years clip was used up.
For my own product range, I have hand-woven Meditation rugs in un-dyed Shetland wool (from Shetland!) and white wools from rare or regional breeds (such as White faced Dartmoor) which I have dyed myself with natural dyes, mostly from my garden and local wild places. I’ve also hand-woven fabric in un-dyed Herdwick for cushions.
I am building my repertoire of sourcing and weaving with breed specific wools, where possible working with individual farms/producers; currently Shetland, Herdwick, Gotland from South Wales, Oxford Down from Swindon and hopefully soon with Cotswold from The Cotswolds! My aim is to develop relationships with local producers and processors assisting their sheep to woven product journey.