Monday, 10 March 2014

Looking for the paper loving blog hop?? We have a new blog!

Ooppss!! you still have our old blog link!!

We have a brand new blog Here!! 

This is where you will find our Paper Loving Post and all our blog posts from now on 10th March 2014 see you there!! :)

Thanks for visiting!!

Sunday, 11 November 2012

15 Minute Sketch

I set myself a task tonight to get the creative juices flowing.

I decided to do illustrate Friday (I know its Sunday :) ) for

So here is my efforts for the theme this week 'Tree'

I decided to get out of my comfort zone of water colour and pastel shades and really test myself, so I used a combination of ink, water, and Brusho colours to complete my illustration.

15 minute sketch of 'Tree'

I'm really quite pleased with the results what do you think?

Wednesday, 2 May 2012



We are back!

This is our first post since coming back from Harrogate British Craft Trade Fair.
You may ask what have we been doing all this time, keeping you waiting for a progress up date.

Well let me tell you Skylarc, has been a wash with bubble wrap, sticky tape, and stamps..... Cushions, lampshades, scarves, and lots more stock has been making its way around the country to lots of shiny new stockists and Galleries.

Over the next few weeks we will be updating you on where you can go to see our new stock in a boutique near you.

In the mean time here are some images for you to feast your eyes on and give you a taste of what in coming your way.

The Build up!

Please excuse my cheesy grin! 

Finally set up!

Exhibition mode!

We met some lovely people both exhibitors and buyers, this show was so welcoming with a brilliant friendly atmosphere. 

This was Skylarc's first trade show but we will be returning year after year, it was so much it didn't even feel like I was working!

Our next post will have news of new stockiest locations and a website update.

Sarah x

Monday, 9 April 2012

British Craft Trade Fair

We will be exhibiting at the British Craft Trade Fair from 15th-17th April 2012.
Come and visit us in the Newcomers Gallery on stand number N42.
See our online catalogue here for a small preview of what we will have on display at the show. 

See you there!

Saturday, 24 September 2011

Teesdale Open Studios

Wow summer is almost over! It seems to have flown by, and already the first leaves of Autumn are turning Golden Yellow. Here at Skylarc I have been so busy preparing for the Teesdale Open Studios and Christmas can you believe!

Today has been the first day of the Open Studios, and I was up bright and early busying around preparing a studio for all you lovely people to come and visit.

This morning saw me up a ladder .... yes you heard that right a LADDER hanging fabric from floor to ceiling. Now I'm not a particularly delicate person and if there is the slightest thing to trip on I will; so the sight of me up a ladder was something to behold, not dainty or lady like at all.
That aside my fabrics are now up and on display along side cushions throws and accessories and will be until Sunday 2nd October.

Through out this time you can visit my studio or any of the other 22 artists studios and chat directly about what inspires us, what we like or dislike, how we work, what mediums we use, and any other questions you can possibly think of. We really are under the spotlight over the coming days.

I personally would love to see any budding artists, practicing artists, start-up business, business ideas, and of course the happy customer, :) come and pick my brains perhaps I can help, and if you have work of your own bring it along its the perfect opportunity to get some useful advice and tips.

As your hopping from one studio to the next why not also take some time to enjoy the idyllic views Teesdale's countryside has to offer, don't forget your camera to snap some pictures even if it's just for the family album. There are some wonderful pubs and B&B's in the area with hearty food and rooms for over night stays, one loyal supporter is the Fox and Hounds in Cotherstone which will not disappoint on both aspects.

On our travels pick up one of the Teesdale Open Studios booklets which are available from any artists studio, which you can see on the website, Fox and Hounds Cotherstone, or select shops in Barnard Castle.

Skylarc looks forward to seeing you! Happy visiting!

Teesdale Open Studios is organised by Ray Landon,and consists of 23 local artists living in Teesdale.

Sneak Peek @ Skylarc's Studio

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

A little update

Hello all, It has been a shamefully long time since I last blogged! So today whilst waiting for screens, papers, inks, and T-shirts to dry I thought I would write a quick update on what has been going on in the world of Skylarc.

To begin with I have been exceptionally busy with lots of different projects. First of all I have moved house and now have the luxury of living in a nice new little flat by the river all be it all my possessions have been moved in, I have been there a week and they are all still in boxes.

We also have a new print studio, which I may add is still full of boxes. But is bigger, and better which will have more space once I finally unpack and find a home for all of the bits I have collected over the years.

Over the next few weeks I will start photographing the progress of the new studio as at the moment it is to much of a mess to anyone's eyes. When it is all finished all my lovely customers will be able to come and have a look around and see where the magic happens, and if your adventurous enough you could even had a go.

Aside all work related things Skylarc has also agreed to take part in the Coast to Coast with The Young Entrepreneurs Trust, so over the last 3 weeks I've been cycling my little legs off in an attempt to become semi fit enough to cycle 174 miles West to East across the country. Here are a few images I have collected over the last week on my travels.

View looking down towards Barnard Castle (Barnard Castle is to the right)

A very steep hill about 1 mile long. 

Skylarc will be printing some t-shirts for team @YETrust to wear whilst cycling. We will update you soon.

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Barnard Castle has big news!!!

Calling all shoes fans and more……..

Ok well today I was going to write a little blog on colour, but I got wind of some big news about my idol Vivienne Westwood.

Westwood is now embarking on a world tour with her successful London exhibition – ‘Vivienne Westwood Shoes’ show casing 40 years in design right up to the present day, destinations on the bill are Moscow, and Beirut and the only other UK date on this particular tour Barnard Castle, County Durham a little more specific, The Bowes Museum. This exhibition will run from 10th June to 10th July so you have one month to catch this really special exhibition of 200 shoes. After this Westwood’s shoes will be jetted off to New York, Japan, and China.

Westwood has been to the Museum a few years ago with an exhibition of her garments along side a historic exhibition of lace The Blackborne Collection. This saw some iconic garments designed by the Dame go on display at The Bowes Museum, and I was lucky enough to be able to attend the opening night.
 At this event Westwood gave a small talk about her garments and her career, this was a once in a life time opportunity to meet the Dame and what’s more it was on my own door step in my home town. I sheepishly approached Westwood and asked her to sign my book about lace.  With such good grace she took my book from me and effortlessly signed her name in the front of my book. 'To Sarah Vivienne Westwood' 
I stood in awe as she slowly looked round the whole exhibition along with the other attendees of the opening night. She admired the work that had gone into the handmade lace on display and pointed out bits of interest as if she was in a room full of old friends.

It was this visit that set the theme of my degree dissertation.

How does Vivienne Westwood express identity in her designs?

A simple question for a dissertation but she is a complicated person to analyse. I could have written much more than the designated 8,000, which now I look back does not seem a lot hmmmm maybe because I am not faced with a deadline.

Hands down The Bowes Museum has earned its brownie points to be welcoming another Vivienne Westwood exhibition into its textile gallery, I think I will live in hope that she will be coming back to open this exhibition on shoes also. 

This exhibition comes months after closing a very successful Damian Hirst display, where the Bowes hosted his famous Diamond encrusted Scull for a short period of time.

More information on ‘Vivienne Westwood shoes’ exhibition and other exhibitions available at The Bowes Museum take a look at their website.

So this post goes to say Barnard Castle may be a small sleepy town but we sure do know how to attract the big names, and I personally can not wait to go see the treasures which will be on display. 

Sarah x

Monday, 9 May 2011

Ian Dutton

Happy Monday everyone I hope the first full working Monday in a while has run smoothly.  
We are kick starting the week with a post about the lovely Ian Dutton illustrator and designer who loves drawing ‘stuff’.

Approximately 2 weeks ago I was daydreaming and browsing though some lovely blogs and websites, and stumbled across Ian in my travels from blog to blog. I instantly fell in love with his designs and style of working and
whilst having a good rummage though his website I saw that he was a tweeter and since I have just started tweeting myself just over a year ago I am drawn to follow people to hear their tweets and up to date news, sometimes just being drawn into a good old tweet with fellow followers.

After following Ian on twitter I was soon dragged away from looking at pretty things on the internet and wasting the day away. Armed with a cup of tea and a pile of ginger nuts I immersed my self in a world of paper work accounting and telephoning, organising my ever untidy office space (yes my gas bills etc are always covered in tea rings and slight smudges where I have kept my biscuit in the tea a little to long) I had soon filed my design inspiration and daydreaming into a special place inside my head for a later date.

After an afternoon of filing, hole punching, stapling, and calculating the next day I awoke bright eyed and bushy tailed ready to start a full day of design work re opening that little box in my head ready for all my ideas to spill out.
But first I can never resist a cheeky peek at what my followers and friends are up to on twitter, and waiting for my in my DM message box was a little message from Ian Dutton….. Sarah you are my 100th follower congratulations you have won a print.
EEEEEk I couldn’t believe it I had actually won something just for being interested in what Ian had to say and what he got up to with his wonderful illustrations, he messaged me and asked me what I liked and a couple of days latter this lovely little print arrived, much prettier and bigger than I had ever imagined.

I love it!

I still can’t quite decide where to put it, I keep moving it around the house. It has given the house that little extra spring feel.
This is where I have it at the moment and I couldn’t resist placing my little hand made wooden mushroom in front of it making it almost like a woodland scene.

Pop over to Ian’s website and take a look at his lovely designs for your self maybe there is something that would fit into your front room.
Ian regularly takes commissions and I am sure he would be happy to hear from you if you have some ideas for your perfect print.

I hope that you enjoy looking around Ian’s site and Ian I hope that you like where I currently have your print displayed in my house. My mum loved it but I am afraid this is going to be one of those prezzies you secretly want to take back and spend all you time trying to sneak it back ;) 

If you are an artist and would like a review please do not hesitate to contact me I would love to see some of you work and write you a feature. Please contact me Sarah at It doesnt matter if you are a furniture designer, fine artist, or kitchen designer if you have an artistic way of producing your product I want to hear about it.

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Inspirational post. What motivates you?

Ok so I have had this blog for a long time now, I even updated it when I was at University and I have become quite attached to it.
In the past I have mainly used it to tell you about new products, Skylarc’s latest activity, and other trivial goings on, but I feel it’s time I interacted with my readers a bit more, as I know some of you have been with me a long time.

So first of all I would like to welcome my new followers and readers, and thank you for being so interested.

From now on I will continue to post updates on activity etc but I will also regularly post other things which I think my readers my find of interest.

I am going to start these ‘Inspirational posts’ as I am going to call them with a question I get asked all the time, in fact it has now become almost a daily thing, and the question is…..

Why did you decide to become self-employed, and what motivates you?

A lot of people follow the question with surely it’s easier to get a job within industry, you’ll get to where you want to be quicker.

Well my answer to this is no I wont!

I love being self-employed! Even though it has lead to me having daily arguments with my self, but perhaps this makes it all the more fun….

I decided I was going to take the plunge into self employment a lot earlier than even I realised, I now know with hindsight on my side I wanted this even when I was at college when I was 16.
I used to dream big when I was at college, as every young girl did.
I took fashion as I wanted to be famous, I wanted to own the designs that every celebrity wanted to wear down the red carpet.

I wanted to be the one that everyone looked at!!!

Well…… now thinking about that I was probably the pain in everyone’s bottoms to be polite.

We used to sit in our little girly huddle and chatter about what we wanted to do when we were older and where we wanted to be, and my answer was….. I want to be famous, who did I want to be famous like … Vivienne Westwood.

What would my answer to that question be today? The same, although with a little more adult bore.

I furthered my training in textiles and surface pattern design as I became more interested in the workings of pattern and how they can be applied to, in my eyes any surface in which you want to jazz up.
I finished my training in 2009 and began looking for a job, I was unable to find anything of interest and after a few months of failings at jobs I didn’t want to do and had nothing to do with my training I thought what am I doing….. This isn’t what I want, So back to the drawing board I went and SLC was dremt up which has now naturally evolved into Skylarc Textiles.

I still dream big like this now but I work hard to put those dreams into motion. I dreamt of having my own business I now have that, I dreamt of being famous im still working on that, but I now have lots of little tunnels I have opened up which seem to have a harder pull than the eyes of the nation.
I am compelled to learn, I have met some amazing people along my journey and each one has taught me invaluable things in business, about my self, and about my business and each in turn has changed the way I look at life.

You may ask the question. If you want to be like Vivienne Westwood and you took fashion, why now are you so interested in textiles and surface pattern for interiors. Well there is no answer to this I just feel that this is my niche I do this best and enjoy it more than anything 

I am inspired by everything around me, I love nature, birds, organic subjects in my work but within my business as whole I cannot pin point one thing in particular, motivation comes from everyday, and everyday is different.

So the real answer to this question is I want to make a name for myself, motivation comes from the pressure I put on my self to get things right and if it’s wrong I only have myself to blame.

Do any of my readers have businesses? Are you planning on setting up? I would love to hear about your inspiration and plans. Perhaps we can swap stories.

I am going to leave you with this little image I found in Elle Decoration on a recent trip to London I can't wait to draw him.

Sarah xx

Thursday, 14 April 2011

New in stock!!!

No longer coming soon............. 

Our soft Gothic Cushion collection is here and we couldn't be more excited.

There are four designs to chose from each one handmade in house with a cute screen printed label featuring Mat.

We would love to know which one is your favorite...

We love Soft Gothic Digital Print Black and Gold Design

Also in the collection....

So from Skylarc Textiles I hope you love them as much as me and Mat do.

Sarah x