As a baby I was put down to sleep (& keep out of mischief) in a large wicker costume hamper at the Birmingham Rep theatre. My parents worked in the Props and Costume departments and I think that that early contact with fabric rubbed off on me. I have loved it ever since. Playing in dad's workshop with trims and ribbons, hiding in the fabric store with bolts of fabric standing in corners, shelves stacked with folded textiles, tins of buttons and strings of beads. I inherited both my grandmothers' hand Singer sewing machines, however, I don't remember learning to sew, in the same way I don't remember learning to read, it's just one of those things I seem always to have been able to do. I wasn't particularly interested in machine sewing as a teenager, I wasn't one for making clothes for dolly or me, although I do remember a 'skaters skirt' in a bright cherry red wool knit, worn with a cream coloured poloneck and matching tights, I thought I was the bees knees! I did do a lot of hand embroidery, cross stitch and tapestry. Knitting I came to quite late ..... it was soo slow to grow into anything, I love knitting now, and am at the very early stage of beginning to crochet. I mostly use vintage, remnant and recycled fabrics, (I find I tend only to stroke new fabric and am unable to cut it! The bolt of Vanessa Arbuthnott fabric destined for spare bedroom curtains over five years ago remains neatly rolled up!) I collect old haberdashery items, wooden cotton reels, cards of poppers, and hooks & eyes, darning mushrooms and thimbles. As the daughter of creative and artistic parents, arts and crafts have come easily to me, but I found it hard to choose one discipline ~ I love making felt; become addicted to machine embroidery; I'm hooked on punchneedle; I enjoy embroidery; have a thing about patchwork; am partial to tapestry; I dream about dressmaking and occasionally have a fancy for weaving; lampshades are my current passion and I can't make enough of them .... the 'Needlesmiths' Creative Sewing Workshops has grown out of this passion for all things fabric, fibre & fabulous!