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Artist Profiles

Joanna's Banners

Meet my magnificent mum, Joanna, and her equally magnificent banners. Never has an artist so willing allowed someone to steal their aesthetic and build an entire business off the back of it, than my mother. She is my absolute number one inspiration, a creative whirlwind and the sole reason I had the confidence to start The Fabled Thread. We grew up surrounded and immersed in a world she created for us. From our little terrace house painted every colour under the sun... with elephants walking along the beams, little houses around the beds, a trapeze hanging in the middle of our attic bedroom. The cellar walls were covered in massive daisy's with disco ball lights... probably so my parents could have some peace whilst we would hide away playing for hours. She even painted murals all around the playground of our primary school in Skipton - there was no escaping her creative influence! My childhood memories are of dad in the cellar cutting out MDF shapes for mum to paint and make into mobiles or little houses for eggs (I'll try find photos of these as they were magnificently bizarre). It was impossible for Alice and I to not have that same creativity instilled in us.

She fills our lives with colour and madhat schemes. No room in our house has been left untouched in her creative pursuits and anytime I am struggling for inspiration, I have decades of her scrapbooks to rifle through. However her own art has always been slightly sidelined, whilst the most demanding of her projects, my sister and I, took priority. So it means, until now, only my family and all our friends have been able to benefit and celebrate her creativity. It's a travesty!

With the birth of The Fabled Thread, and slight ability I have now to shout about this incredible artist, I have finally persuaded her to start sharing her work with a wider audience. Whilst her creativity is definitely not only isolated into banners (you just have to take a look at our home in Yorkshire as evidence), this is a medium she has been working in over the last few years and loves. So today (!!) she has launched her website to start sharing and selling her banner creations, as well as taking on commissions.

In her own words:

"Once upon a time I tried to be a serious artist making deep and meaningful work. Now I am going backwards and returning to my childhood creating colourful fabric wall hangings that just make me happy. I love colour and pattern and although not a highly skilled needleworker I find creating images with material and thread far more enjoyable than facing that blank canvas with paint. The pieces are often inspired by words or songs which I combine with naive imagery to make work in a spontaneous unafraid way, not overthinking the design or trying to get it right. My ultimate aim is for something joyful and fun. I hope you enjoy them too."

Below are lots of images of her work - some of which are for sale. Please do go and visit her website, take a look at her instagram and celebrate my magnificent mum.

I couldn't be prouder!

Photo credits from the amazing Helena Dolby and Jesse Wild, or some from mum with my dad holding a long wooden pole slightly out of shot!