We are delighted to announce the line up of our Northern Weavers online talk day on 11th May.

You can find full ticket information here


Becky Sunter – 10am

Becky Sunter is a weaver with over 30 years experience, she travelled the length of the country
to study Rug weaving in Cumbria in the 90s as a teenager.
Since then, she has followed a weaving journey that has led her to explore the vast breadth and
depth of weaving knowledge. From heavy rugs, to the finest lace weight shawls.
Being a hand spinner since the age of 14, Becky has worked with the raw materials through to
the finished products, she has always had a desire to find out how things come together, which
had led to a fascination in the construction of textiles.
Tabby textiles was set up with a young family in tow, fitting in weaving, selling and teaching
between the chaos of family life. Becky now sells her work at high end craft shows in galleries and on her website.
Becky teaches both weaving and spinning in her studio, a two storey workshop down a back
lane in Darlington. Her classes are attended by a keen group of students of all ages and
backgrounds, who are enthusiastic to learn more.

Jacqueline James – 11.30am

As an established, award-winning textile artist, Jacqueline James creates hand-woven, custom dyed rugs and wall-hangings for public and private collections. From her home studio in York, UK she blends traditional techniques with contemporary design style to create luxurious and functional textiles for distinctive interiors. Jacqueline specialises in collaborating with artists, private collectors and interior designers to create bespoke commissions and textile art.

Each handwoven piece is made with natural and durable materials including wool, cotton and linen. Pleasing colour combinations, striking geometric patterns and smooth gradients are distinctive elements of her woven designs. To create interesting surface patterns, Jacqueline regularly custom dyes the designer yarns before the weaving process.

 Her commissioned work is in many private collections in the UK and internationally. Major public commissions include weaving for Westminster Abbey, York Minster and The British Library. She collaborated with textile artist Amelie Crepy to create ‘The Alchemy of Blue’, a textile art installation, at the Collect Art Fair in 2022. Jacqueline’s current textile collection features the use of natural dyes.

 www.handwovenrugs.co.uk  @jacqueline_james_rugs

Kirsty Jean Leadbetter – 1.30pm

For the third talk of the day, we will be joined by Kirsty Jean Leadbetter of The Liverpool Weaving Company

Kirsty Jean founded the Liverpool Weaving Company in 2018, to facilitate her passion for woven textiles in the city she was raised in and loves. This design studio is Liverpool’s very first and only micro mill, located in the Baltic Triangle, offering bespoke artisan cloth, design consultancy and tuition. Kirsty works with a plethora of clients, from local alpaca farmers to haute couture brands.

Kirsty Jean has eleven years weaving experience, such as co-managing a weave studio in the Shetland Islands, a place she still draws much inspiration from.

Jane Walkley – 3pm

Memory, Place, and Materiality: A Site-Specific Art Practice.

For this talk, Jane will take you behind the scenes of her work at Sunny Bank Mills (a former textile mill in West Yorkshire), a site that has undergone loss, change, and rematerialisation. She will explain the process of her initial research, who became involved, and why a box of dust holds such importance.

Jane will initiate the discussion about the ways in which derelict buildings can invoke memory and feelings, and how site-specific interactions can bridge the gap between memory and place in the absence of these buildings.

Along the way, we will hear about the people who worked at Sunny Bank Mills and learn about their lives and experiences. Jane will also reveal the secrets of my clay impression and Jesmonite casting process, and see how she uses these techniques to create tactile and sculptural pieces that maintain a physical and visual link to the site.

Jane explains, “This is a talk that will challenge your perceptions of art and memory, and leave you with a deeper understanding of the relationship between place, people, and the past.”

Jane Walkley is a UK-based visual artist whose work explores the complex relationship between memory, place, and attachment. Using traditional tapestry techniques and hand-cast jesmonite resin, she creates sculptural and tactile pieces that maintain a physical and visual connection to the sites she is researching. Her evocative and informative work invites viewers to explore their own memories and attachments to place.

An active member of several organisations, including The 62 Group, PRISM Textiles, and the British Tapestry Group, Walkley studied for a BA (Hons) in Crafts specialising in ceramics and woven textiles at Manchester Metropolitan University in 1993 and later earned an MA in Creative Practice from Leeds Arts University in 2019.

It would be lovely to spend the day with you and remember if you can’t join us live, we record the sessions for ticket holders. Tickets can be found here.