Design for Weave – Appleshaw House studio

  • Tutor Sharon Kearley
  • Autumn Term Tuesdays – Sept 20, 27, Oct 4,11, 18, Nov 1, 8, 15, 22, 29
  • BUY    Term  Autumn
  • Spring Term Tuesdays – Jan 10, 17, 24, 31, Feb 7, 14, 21, 28, Mar 7, 14, 21, 2810am – 4pm
  • BUY    Term  Spring


What level of experience is needed for this course?

This course is suitable for the beginner to experienced weaver and is taught in response to the individuals level.  

Sharon Kearley is an International Woven Textiles Artist and an experienced Lecturer and Author. Her work is grounded in a playful and innovative approach to weaving, creating refined artworks for installation and exhibition, drawing upon ephemeral, spatial qualities and strong narrative.

In the ten week course, Sharon will teach you how to translate line from drawings, into ‘drawing’ with threads to create woven cloth, exploring texture, colour and structure, sharing ideas from her book “Woven Textiles – A Designer’s Guide.”.  

The first five weeks will teach you how to design using your own individual ideas.  Sharon will be guiding you through the design development process, learning to  create mood and colour boards from your initial inspirational images that you bring to class.  You will learn how to draw for  design using mark-making and varied materials, communicating and interpreting your ideas of colour and texture through drawing, painting and collage. You will be taught how to develop your drawings into surface design, exploring scale, pattern and repeat.  During the last five sessions you will learn how to translate these drawings and design ideas into woven cloth, drawing with yarn to explore colour, texture and repeat pattern through woven structure to produce samples and framed artworks.

Sharon will share her own design approaches and working methods to visually break downthe process. Inquisitive exploration, and above all fun are the focus, promoting an experimental approach to yarn and weave to produce highly individual fabrics. 

Materials will be provided, including a teaching pack containing guidance on the design development stages. However, you are advised to bring an A3 sketchbook and inspirational photographs, pictures, admired artists/designers or fabric snippets, any inspirational visuals that you may like to work from.


The course in detail

First Half of Term 1 Weeks 1 – 5

Learn to Design

This high-end design course, whilst structured actively promotes individual play with room for exploration and experimentation, celebrating the design process through doing; asking “what if…?” And “what happens when …?” Embracing both mistakes and the unknown, introducing you to design, breaking it down into key manageable stages.

Bringing your own inspirational images, feathers, beads, colour chips, fabrics, anything to get the juices flowing, you will create mood and colour boards to design from learning how to create a colour palette.  There will be plenty of time for discussion and fun activities to help break down those barriers to embarking on an idea you may have had for a while but too worried to begin. 




Colour, Texture, Surface, Shape and Form

Using your mood boards, Sharon will teach you an inquisitive, exploratory and experimental approach to design, learning to draw using mark making, collage, stitch, mixed media and painting; really understanding what materials can do for you in a fun and highly creative way from a textiles focus, whilst getting to grips with colour, texture, shape and form.  



Learning skills in attention to detail, communicating surface – is it soft, shiny, matt, fragile, Sharon will teach you how to really draw with these details in mind, exploring colour and texture using unusual materials alongside conventional papers and paints to incorporate shape and form into your design drawings.


















Pattern and Repeat

Drawing on your new knowledge of mark making and drawing, sketches, collages, Sharon will guide you in how to create your own ideas in pattern, repeating pattern across a surface using collage, painting and moving into potential weaving ideas in papers, yarns and found materials and weave windings. 











You will learn about pattern repeat and motif, understanding lessons in scale, bringing in your knowledge of marks, colour and surface within the world of repeat pattern, taking line from drawings into 3D dimensional line and repeat pattern, really exploring material qualities investigating for example, transparency, delicacy, fragility depending on the focus of your individual projects.  











Second Half of Term 1 Weeks 6 – 10

Design for Weave

As you drew with materials, investigating mark making, colour and textural qualities, these lesso

ns are extended into cloth.  Drawing with yarn you will weave your own fabrics, an extension of your patterns, paper designs and collages.  Developing words such as delicate, fragile, soft from your marks in paper into drawing with yarn, colour and weave structure to ‘draw in weave.’  Everything that you have learnt in the first term is now taken into learning how to weave colour and texture with the same focus of experimental play and exploration, your design work will communicate your ‘design story’ with huge clarity from beginning to end. 

Whether learning simple structures for the first time or extending your knowledge through advanced pattern, you will work on pre-dressed 4 and 8 shaft Harris table looms to create individual bespoke framed textiles art, treasured textiles samples or personalised cloth with a specific function that takes your fancy. 


Show & Tell – reflection and analysis

At the end of the course, there will be an opportunity to show your work, talk about your individual designs and reflect on how you may extend your ideas further into ‘drawing in weave.’

It is a fun day where we have the chance to learn from others and consider how we will take our work forward progressing onto the next weave level course or projects.









Students will need to bring:

  • A3 ring bound art pad
  • Camera/phone for visual reference
  • Photographs, own drawings or images for inspiration 
  • Scissors
  • Squared note pad and pencil for the second half of the course
  • Apron (optional) if using wet materials in the first half of the course.
  • Please note Sharon will provide materials but if there is something that you  would like to bring in terms of art materials, fabrics or hoarded odds and ends then please do.

Sharon is happy to answer any questions prior to the workshop.  Please contact her at her work can be found on her website