Meet The CraftMakers

Laura Adburgham

Ground Floor, Design Avenue

QEST D’Oyly Carte Charitable Trust Scholar

Woven Textiles

Inspired by intricate structures and irregular details found within the natural world, Laura creates one-of-a-kind textiles for fashion and interiors. Starting with natural yarns such as linen, wool, paper and silk, every stage is done by hand, from setting up the loom to applying finishing techniques

Designs are developed through a circular working approach between expressive drawing, haptic model making and sampling on the loom. Her latest work explores how biological structures can inform sustainable textile design, in collaboration with UAL’s Bio-Inspired Textiles research project.

With support of a 2018 QEST D’Oyly Carte Charitable Trust Scholarship, Laura completed her MA in Textiles at the University for the Creative Arts in Farnham, refining her yarn creation, dyeing, weaving and finishing skills.

Making

Laura will be hand-weaving new designs on an eight-shaft table loom and displaying scarves and swatches in mostly natural materials such as linen, cotton, bamboo, silk and wool.

Website: www.lauraadburgham.com

Instagram: @lauraadburgham

Email: laura@lauraadburgham.com

Bryony Applegate

Ground Floor, Design Avenue

QEST Garfield Weston Foundation Scholar

Ceramics

Bryony specialises in high-end tableware and ceramic objects for interiors, which blur the boundaries between sculpture and utility. Combining material-led research with precise and minimalist design, her aim is to ensure form and function work in harmony.

Thriving on collaboration, Bryony works closely with clients and chefs to understand their aesthetic and needs, knowing that the choice of tableware can be as carefully considered as the food when creating a fine dining experience.

Bryony developed her interest in high-end restaurant tableware during her MA in Ceramics & Glass at the Royal College of Art, supported by a 2019 QEST Garfield Weston Foundation Scholarship.

Making

Bryony will be creating an installation piece consisting of approximately 100 piped and cast semi-circles, presented as a landscape on the wall. Through her method of piping porcelain slip, Bryony is “controlling the chaos” of the fluid with striking, intricate results.

Website: www.bryonyapplegate.com

Instagram: @bryonyapplegate

Email: info@bryonyapplegate.com

Estella Castle

Ground Floor, Design Avenue

QEST Pilgrim Trust Scholar

Straw Work

Estella practices the endangered crafts of corn dolly making and straw working, and connects museum collections with local communities through events, performances and exhibitions. She has worked as a freelance artist for clients and partners including the National Trust, Alexander McQueen, the Wallace Collection and the Victoria & Albert Museum.

In 2021, Estella completed a residency at Egham Museum, drawing inspiration from its collection of 1820s John Hassell watercolour paintings and the trades and crafts of the day to create the life-size straw Clydesdale horse on display.

A 2021 QEST Pilgrim Trust Scholarship funded Estella’s studies with master thatcher Ben Rance, QEST Scholar and straw milliner Veronica Main MBE, and straw work maker Elaine Lindsay to master a range of techniques.

Making

Estella will be creating straw work pieces using endangered UK heritage straw work techniques, Swiss straw work techniques and spinning straw into thread. These traditional techniques continue to be adopted and adapted by contemporary artists such as Estella and designers like Alexander McQueen, highlighting their contemporary relevance.

Website: www.estellacastle.com

Instagram: @estella.castle

Email: stella.castle.1@gmail.com

Sarah Desmarais

Ground Floor, Design Avenue

QEST Garfield Weston Foundation Scholar

Textile Design

Sarah produces hand-printed silks and handsewn garments using traditional means: drawing, resist printing, hand dyeing and hand stitching. She patterns cloth using the materials of Japanese katazome – paper stencils and a rice paste resist.

She is interested in slow, labour-intensive, manual craft practice and its potential to support a sustainable relationship with things we own. Visually, she explores an aesthetic of tiny variations, tenacious repetition and fragile order perturbed by currents of disruption and minor imperfections; a reduced colour palette to focus on pattern and form.

Sarah has been involved in various craft research projects, including doctoral research into the relationship between crafting and mental health. A 2019 QEST Garfield Weston Foundation Scholarship enabled her to study with katazome practitioners in Japan.

Making

Sarah will be working on some handmade books using her katazome handprinted fabrics. This may include drawing designs, cutting stencils, printing and dyeing fabric or assembling finished fabric-covered book boards and paper into books.

Website: www.sarahdesmarais.com

Instagram: @sarahdesmaraistextiles

Email: sarah.desmarais@btinternet.com

Gary Drostle (Drostle Public Arts Ltd)

QEST Scholar

Mosaic Art

Mosaic artist Gary is passionate about creating creative and long-lasting artworks for our built environment. He designs and hand-crafts exclusive mosaics, mosaic sculptures and mural artworks for interior and exterior spaces.

Gary has gained an international reputation for his work, winning a string of awards including being included in every year of the Mosaic Arts International from 2008 and winning the top award in both 2013 and 2014. In 2019 he was FCI magazine’s Installation Award Winner, and he has completed major commissions in California, Washington DC and Iowa.

A 2006 QEST Scholarship supported an intensive study period at the Orsoni Mosaic Works in Venice, as well as research trips to visit mosaics in Venice and Friuli, pushing his technical skills, knowledge and appreciation to the next level.

Making

Gary will be working on a small mosaic panel in one of his signature fishpond mosaic designs. The mosaic will be made in glass using the traditional paper face indirect technique which is his speciality. The glass tiles used are left over from his work restoring the Paolozzi Mosaics for Tottenham Court Road tube station.

Website: www.drostle.com

Instagram: @garydrostle

Email: gary@drostle.com

Phone: 077 1952 9520

Photo credit: Julian Calder

Kate Pankhurst (Art of Stitch)

Ground Floor, Design Avenue

QEST D’Oyly Carte Charitable Trust Scholar

Embroidery

Kate employs traditional embroidery techniques with a contemporary twist. Pieces make the viewer stop and look, rewarding their attention with storytelling, delightful detail and humour. Inspired by city life, culture and memory, ideas pop into her mind and refuse to budge until realised.

In 2021, Kate was awarded first place in the Hand & Lock Prize for Embroidery (Textile Art Student category) for her whimsical timepiece Lockdown O’Clock, and the Worshipful Company of Gold & Silver Wyre Drawers Associate Award for the best use of the goldwork embroidery technique.

A 2020 QEST D’Oyly Carte Charitable Trust Scholarship supported Kate’s final year on the prestigious Future Tutors course at the Royal School of Needlework, Hampton Court Palace.

Making

Kate will be stitching goldwork techniques, or more precisely metalwork (in silver), in a hoop. She will also be preparing components to make small bobbin boxes.

Website: www.artofstitch.com

Instagram: @kate_artofstitch

Email: kate@artofstitch.com

Phone: 07896 289741

Phyllis Clair Smith

Ground Floor, Design Avenue

QEST Howdens Scholar

Decorative & Mural Artistry

Fine and decorative artist Phyllis is skilled in verre églomisé, grisaille, decorative painting, surface design and restoration. She enjoys the challenge of creating original solutions to decorative problems – whether on-site or from her studio, independently or as part of a team – using her in-depth knowledge of materials in a wide variety of ways.

For her own artistic practice, evocative travel literature, symbolic medieval art and her own experiences of the outdoors are amongst her influences. The resulting abstract landscapes encourage contemplation.

With support of a 2021 QEST Howdens Scholarship, Phyllis is currently learning the techniques of painted faux marble and wood finishes under Pierre Beaudry, culminating in an opportunity to work on faux marble pillars at Shakespeare’s Globe in London.

Making

Phyllis will be painting a range of faux marble finishes on three plinths, showcasing some of the techniques she is learning as part of her QEST scholarship with Pierre Beaudry, alongside a display of works inspired in part by the natural patterns found in marble.

Website: www.phyllisclairsmith.co.uk

Instagram: @phyllisclairsmith

Email: info@phyllisclairsmith.co.uk

Phone: 07955 617381