Tickled pink tapestry kit by David Smith

I grew up on a farm in Kent, and studied Three-Dimensional Design at Ravensbourne College of Art and Design in the early 1970s, graduating with a First Class Honours degree. I specialised in Furniture Design, and developed a strong interest in the work of the Arts and Crafts movement. I spent most of my working life as a designer and maker of handmade furniture, both as a designer-craftsman, and, in later years, in a small company working as a designer and CAD/CAM programmer for the CNC machinery we used.

I was forced into early retirement by a long-term ailment called Meniere’s Disease. This is an incurable condition of the inner ear which, over the years causes irreversible destruction of both hearing and balance. I am now profoundly deaf.

Tapestry is a new adventure for me. Recovering from a short illness in 2019, my wife suggested I try a tapestry kit. I enjoyed it so much, painstakingly watching the design emerge from the canvas to take on its full depth and colour, I decided to write my own computer design program. I wasn’t interested in cottagey or homespun subjects, beautiful though these can be. I wanted to design my own, and coming from a long background in three-dimensional design, I wanted to reflect that in my design work, not only in the suggestions of solid objects, but also in the patterns and flow of surface and colour. I like to use light and shade, highlights and shadows, and the colour gradients that Appletons provide in many of their ranges are ideal for suggesting depth and solidity.