2017 Highlights

On 10th February 2017 my work was exhibited with Sue Ryder as part of Light Night Nottingham. I was also invited to run a workshop inviting Sue Ryder visitors to unpick labels from rags that would later be assembled in a new piece of work. In April I had the pleasure of meeting Diana Ali from the Big Painting Challenge at the Private View of the Summer Exhibition, Institute of Mental Health Nottingham University. I also met members of the International Churchill Society at a Champagne reception including Churchill’s Grandson Randolph Churchill. In May I launched a project offering an exciting opportunity for Duke of Edinburgh Award holders to participate. The portrait was a huge success and was exhibited at Royal Tailors Kent, Haste & Lachter in Mayfair, London, and later in Derbyshire to celebrate the Queen and Duke’s 70th Wedding Anniversary. I also had fun creating a canvas of R2D2 from used labels relating to space and planets.

It was a wonderful achievement to produce a commission of Jane Austen for the 200th celebrations at Winchester Cathedral, which also saw the launch of the new ten-pound note. I was interviewed on BBC Radio Derby and BBC Radio Nottingham, also appearing on BBC TV Breakfast and in the BBC Radio Times Magazine. Not forgetting a two-page spread in Australia’s Homespun (Designer Edge) Magazine.  Two of my original works from the collection of 20,000 used labels were sold to collectors and a selection of my work is now available at The Makers, Ashbourne, Derbyshire.

Now looking forward to an exciting 2018.
Happy New Year.

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6000 Name tapes

When I heard the news about the Duke of Edinburgh stepping down from his official royal duties in the autumn of 2017, I immediately saw an opportunity for a project that would celebrate his contribution to The DofE Award since 1956. My idea was to use the names of people who had completed their DofE Award at Bronze, Silver or Gold. The names would be woven onto cotton tapes and used to assemble the Duke’s portrait with dressmaker pins on canvas. The response to the callout to put forward a name was fantastic and within a week I had gathered the names of 100 lucky participants. Some people put forward their own name while others put forward a friend or relatives name as a surprise gift. I received a name from Canada, and a Gold DofE participant who collected her award 38 years ago at Buckingham Palace from the Duke himself.  By special invitation the portrait also includes the name of Double Olympic Champion Dame Kelly Holmes (Silver Award), also well-known TV presenter Jim Rosenthal (Gold Award).

The portrait measures 88cm high x 72cm wide, it took 209 hours to assemble and used 130grams of dressmaker pins.  The portrait will be exhibited in the window at The Makers, 47 Church Street, Ashbourne, Derbyshire DE6 1AE from Friday 17th November until Friday 24th November 2017. It will be displayed for the first time alongside the WW1 portrait of Queen Elizabeth II to celebrate the 70th wedding anniversary of the royal couple.

Duke of Edinburgh exhibition in Mayfair

It is a pleasure to announce that the Duke of Edinburgh portrait will be exhibited in Mayfair, London at bespoke tailors Kent Haste & Lachter, 7 Sackville Street, London, W1S 3DE. John Kent (Royal Tailor) has been privileged to make trousers for HRH Duke of Edinburgh since 1966 and still holds the Royal Warrant. The tailoring team are thrilled to exhibit the Dukes portrait celebrating his contribution to The Duke of Edinburgh Award since 1956.  The portrait is assembled from the names of Duke of Edinburgh Award holders including Stephen Lachter (Gold Award), Managing Director, bespoke shirting. The window exhibition will run from 1st- 29th September 2017.

Woven name tapes of Duke of Edinburgh Award holders.

Woven name tapes of Duke of Edinburgh Award holders.

Out and about this week

I had the pleasure of meeting Mark Dennison at BBC Radio Nottingham this week, promoting my opportunity for Duke of Edinburgh participants to be part of my next portrait. Also lovely to meet Diana Ali at the summer exhibition launch at The Institute of Mental Health, Nottingham. You may have seen Diana presenting the BBC Big Painting Challenge. 

Opportunity to participate

Latest news, Dame Kelly Holmes holds a silver Duke of Edinburgh Award and is proud to have her name included in the Duke's portrait. 

I am offering an exciting opportunity to participate.  As you may know the Duke of Edinburgh has recently announced that he will be stepping down from his official royal duties. I would like to celebrate some of his achievements by assembling his portrait using the names of people who have completed a Duke of Edinburgh Award. The Duke created the award in 1956, which has since benefited thousands of young people.

Please note the named person must have completed a Duke of Edinburgh Award at Bronze, Silver or Gold. Each participant must be able to pay £10 towards the cost of their nametape. The nametapes will be organised by myself and purchased from Cash’s of Coventry www.jjcash.co.uk. I anticipate a good response to this opportunity.

If you would like to be included or would like to put forward a name please send a message via the contact page. Please include the first and last name of the participant along with their award, for example Joy Pitts Bronze.  I will contact you for payment once I have enough names. Thank you in antipation, Joy.