Can I Borrow Your Boro?

Fabulous Japanese Boro on show at Somerset House. Very rare opportunity to see so many of these unique textiles in one place.

Boro is a traditional method of patching used by poor people who increased the longevity of bed covers etc by repairing them with small patches of cotton. Dealers collected such scraps from shipped deliveries and sold them on to those who needed them. The limited colour range is due to the restriction of hues people were allowed to wear. Only the rich and the high ranking we entitled to brighter coloured clothing.








Spirograph for Grown Ups


My Foundation Diploma show developed from designs I made using a Spirograph and the wonderful discovery that ‘mistakes’ can be beautiful too.  My Tutor, Lee, was pleased that I had finally broken my Virgo-led tendency towards perfection!

These versions are created using a range of string and twine.

String and Twine Spiral

String and Twine Spiral

String and Twine Spirals

String and Twine Spirals

String and Twine Spiral Display
String and Twine Spiral Display

Eco Dyeing Heaven

Spent a fantastic morning with Jenny Leslie improving my Eco Dyeing techniques. Jenny was extremely helpful and had lots of advice (some of it direct from her course with India Flint – sooo jealous).

The anticipation during unwrapping is great!

Unwrapping the bundles

Unwrapping the bundles

More unwrapping

More unwrapping

Anyway here are the initial results – not yet washed out so hope they don’t fade too much – very happy with them, although may need to re-dye to turquoise scarf for more contrast/colour.

Cotton with copper mordant and Eucalypus overdyed

Cotton with copper mordant and Eucalypus overdyed

Cotton with milk mordant and  Blackberry Leaves

Cotton with milk mordant and Blackberry Leaves

Dyed scarf with Blackberry Leaf overdyed

Dyed scarf with Blackberry Leaf overdyed

Silk scarf with ornamental eucalyptus

Silk scarf with ornamental eucalyptus

The Craft Collective

The Craft Collective Onlineheader 1

top yy

Lu Underwood

The Craft Collective is a group of Hertfordshire based textile, mixed media and stitch artists.


As individuals we use natural silks,organic textiles and wool, and repurpose fabrics.  Our processes range from hand dying wool fibres and fabrics to making paper and from silk forms to furniture.




Hazel Stapleton

As a collective, stitch is a fundamental part of our work but with outcomes that are very different.

The Craft Collective workshops are a way of handing on and keeping alive the skills we have.

Check out our Website for more details of upcoming workshops and other news.

The Craft Collective Online

The Artists involved are:

      Lu Underwood * Hazel Stapleton        Louise Greene *Joanne Bowes

Lou Greene

Lou Greene

joanne 2

Joanne Bowes

Today is TWEED DAY


Well – missed it! Yesterday was Tweed Day in America (but it might not be linked to our fantastic fabric.) However, think we should adopt a Tweed Day anyway – we need to celebrate what we are actually good at. Perhaps it could coincide with the London (or other) Tweed Run? What do you think? If you like the idea please spread the word.

Elegant Survival

Yes, put away your gold lamé–because today is TWEED DAY!


Posted on April 2, 2013 at 10:25 AM


By M-J de Mesterton

Our friend Steve Worthington, eminent storyboard artist and sculptor, has written and illustrated a tale for Tweed Day, which is today, the Third of April, 2013.

Click upon the miniature picture to see Steve Worthington’s scintillating Tweed Day tale, an action-story that includes cartoon-images of me and my husband, and highlights the desirability of tweed cloth*….

*Tweed is cloth, not “fabric”.

Read More at Classic, Elegant Dressing

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