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a little bit about me

I was born in Bolton, Greater Manchester, England and after a science based education went onto pursue my first love of art and design (a love that was nurtured by my late father - a talented amateur artist) by studying for a degree in textile and knitwear design in Leicester. I was taught to hand knit and sew at an early age by my mother and, in my twenties, I taught myself to crochet! After leaving college with a first class honours degree, I went onto set up my own knitwear design label that sold in the US and Japan and many small retail outlets and galleries in the UK. It was during this time that I first became aware of Rowan and their beautiful range of yarns and became a fan. I was able to use Rowan yarns for hand flat machine knitting as, in the late 1980’s, Rowan sold yarn on 250g cones as well as on ball. Even though my label was successful, in 1990 I decided to return back to commercial design after meeting my then to be husband! Through the 14 years as a designer for a successful knitwear manufacturer in Leicestershire, I saw many of my designs become a part of best selling collections for many of the British high street retailers such as Next, BHS, Burton and Debenhams.

In 2005, I joined the Rowan design team as Head Designer. In my role, I was responsible for the creative aspect of the Rowan Magazine and brochures. I designed and oversaw the design collections for the publications as well as the art direction and styling of most of the photography shoots. I was also responsible for the editorial content of the Rowan Magazine, briefing journalists and writing myself. I was also heavily involved with the development of new yarn ranges and the selection of new colours each season. I started my own design company in 2013 whilst still working for Rowan, but in 2014 I suffered a heart attack which ended my career with Rowan. Whilst recovering and, with the support of Rowan, I concentrated on growing my business by first self publishing books using Rowan yarns. In 2017 I was able to work completely independently and started to develop my own yarn, British Breeds, which launched in Autumn 2018. Alongside my yarn and books, I also produce a range of kits and hold weekend workshops in the Yorkshire Dales as well as the very popular annual Fairisle Club.

I have lived for many years in rural Leicestershire but recently we have moved to Wensleydale in the beautiful Yorkshire Dales in England. I am happily married and we are the proud owners of two adorable German Pointer dogs called Norah and Nelly. My favourite colour is green... any shade of green. My favourite yarn is British Breeds of course but I also love Spindrift from Jamiesons of Shetland and Felted Tweed from Rowan. I love to walk, cook, garden and paint (when I have the time!) Why not subscribe to the Newsletter to get all the latest info.