We have worked on textile projects for: Fairholme Care Home; two Shropshire Council community buildings, Helena Lane; and The Lantern; the Shropshire based charity Bridges; Shelton Hospital; the Severn Hospice; the Memorial Hall in Oswestry, Telford Children's Centres and West Felton Village Hall.
Fairholme Care Home
Coverage Care Services Ltd, a Shropshire based not for profit company who run Fairholme Care Home in Oswestry, have commissioned us to create textile pieces for the new Fairholme, currently being constructed, in Shrewsbury Road, Oswestry.
The theme of the project, influenced by workshops with residents, was based on nature. The large piece for the reception area is triangular, to fit into the particular space. We divided the large triangle into vertical panels. Each panel has a different combination of background colours. The whole design is centred around the horse chestnut tree and includes a variety of flora and fauna associated with trees. In addition we have created four circular panels to go on the wall in each of the four conmmunal rooms in each unit. Each circle features a single bird with associated flowers, chosen by Fairholme: skylark with poppies; kingfisher with primroses; nightingale with roses; and kestrel with orchids. All the panels have been created using string, hand-dyed in the studio.
Helena Lane is a purpose built resource centre in Ludlow which provides a range of social care and health services for older people and adults with learning disabilities, who have been assessed as needing some support to enable them to continue to live independently at home. The centre aims to improve and promote independence, facilitate friendships, provide social contact and stimulating activities. The textile piece is for wall above the reception area. The theme is Ludlow through the seasons, with four panels, each one representing spring, summer, autumn and winter. Workshops were held with users of the day centre. Discussions took place about what folks remembered of their life in Ludlow, important places and people. Drawings were made which were taken back to the studio and, together with photographs of Ludlow as it is today, formed the basis of the panels. Using a mixture of lino cut printing, screen printing, applique work, hand embroidery and machine sewing, the pieces have gradually taken shape. The finished panels were installed in May 2012.
The Lantern is a multi-use community building offering a range of facilities including: meeting rooms, a community hall and kitchen, IT suite, a cafe and library. The reception area has a high, light, central, circular atrium. We chose a textile piece comprising of 12 panels to line this atrium. The theme is 'meeting with friends', widely interpreted to include people and animals. All the designs are transferred onto felt, handmade by the Project Group, and are free embroidered by machine.
Two of the panels have been inspired by, and worked on, by the young people who meet at The Lantern after school homework club. They have drawn and creatively sewn their own designs. The panels were installed in May 2012.
Bridges - making global connections
Bridges, a small Shropshire charity based in Wellington, commissioned a textile piece to assist in their work giving talks and workshops to schools and community groups, raising awareness of global issues, promoting knowledge and learning for a fairer world. Nina ran 2 workshops at the Project Group about the UN Millenium Goals and issues around poverty and wealth in all parts of the world. After these sessions, a small group of members worked on ideas, using recycled materials, to design a sample banner that Nina could use to help her apply for funding. Nina was successful in her application to the Big Lottery, Awards for All. The challenge was to make an interactive, illustrative piece for Nina to use as a resource as she goes around visiting groups, that can be easily folded and is transportable. Once completed, the banner was on display in Oswestry library in January 2012. Nina is now using the banner in her work.
To find out more about the work of Bridges - making global connections, visit their visit at: http://www.shropshirebridges.org.uk
Shelton Hospital and the Severn Hospice
The Project Group received funding to produce two small commissions: one for Shelton Hospital, Shrewsbury and one for The Severn Hospice, Shrewsbury. The money for these was donated by Shropshire and Telford Patient and Public Involvement (PPI).
Shelton Hospital project: Scene and Felt
Individual members have "drawn" their favourite Shropshire, or Welsh, view onto pieces of made felt. These individual 'windows have been assembled together into panels using made rope, and framed, to create 'windows' with many different views of our area. These have been installed on the back wall of the Cedars restuarant at Shelton Hospital.
This project was opened by Steve Jones, the Chair of the Mental Health Trust on 23rd March 2010.
The work included workshops with inpatients at Shelton, where Project Group members taught the art of drawing with felt. This work has been assembled into one of the 'window' panels.
We designed and made a wall panel to hang in the reception area at the Severn Hospice in Shrewsbury. We experimented with silk paper making and used this technique to make a beautiful picture. Using silk fibres and a theme of autumn seed heads, we created a calming and welcoming piece for the reception area.
The piece was mounted in a perspex frame, kindly donated by Pennant, for this project.
Norma Ross (above) from the Severn Hospice, visited the Project Group to see the piece under construction, and commented:
'Having visited the Project I can certainly understand why you wished to place your commission with them, what a brilliant atmosphere and lovely, lovely people. Thanks again for supporting our hospice in this way.'
The Project Group was commissioned by the Oswestry Memorial Hall Committee to design and create large scale textile panels to mark the 100th anniversary of the hall. The panels illustrate the use of the hall over time and incorporate architectural details from the building.
Work on the panels involved consultations and presentations with current users of the hall and the committee. Members of the Hall Committee and the Project Group celebrated the installation of these panels on 30th July 2009.
Telford Children's Centres
We were commissioned to produce three individual pieces for 2 children's centres in deprived areas of Telford. The brief was to add a splash of colour and interest to two newly built centres in Telford, and to involve the children and their carers, in the design of the final pieces.
The commission involved workshops with under-fives and their carers to gather ideas and designs for:
- a felted wall hanging: based on ideas from a story telling workshop and resulting pictures from the workshop
- a glass welcome sign: based on letters decorated with tissue paper and lots of glitter by the children (with a little help from adults)
- a felt and papier mache mobile: based on clay models made and decorated by the children
West Felton Village Hall
We were commissioned to create panels to help sound-proof the main hall of the refurbished welll used village hall. Using photographs taken in the locality we produced beautiful string panels.