Many exciting projects are afoot! And Phase Two of the Aural Textiles project is one of them. Last week the new, expanded team met for the second time. We gathered in Helmsdale, a small town in the far north – though it is not the very farthest north you can go in mainland Scotland – for a sunny weekend of discussion, skill-sharing and collaborative planning.
This time round we are working in pairs (or threes, or possibly even fours), with the basic principle that textile makers should collaborate with makers from other disciplines. I am working with Jen Stewart, the jeweller behind Nmarra Design. We were drawn to working together because our practices could hardly be more different. As I’ve learned, our temperaments are also different and complementary, with Jen bringing spades of optimism and drive to the project while I do the worrying for both of us!
Our vision for the project can be roughly summed up as ‘a suit of armour’, though we aren’t planning to clad a knight from head to toe. Not yet, anyway. The challenge of combining textile and brass elements into a coherent statement gives us both a great
excuse reason to experiment with our techniques. Along with other participants, we have been documenting our discussions and experiments on the Aural Textiles blog, so do follow along if you are interested. Over the next six months we’ll continue developing our samples until we meet up with the rest of the team again at the end of March – hopefully, with prototypes in tow.