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Lynda Shell - Makers Portrait

I am a textile designer making handmade bags & purses form a workshop in my garden at home in Wales. My journey began at the University of Wales Institute, Cardiff, where in 2004 I was awarded a first class BA Honours degree in Contemporary Textile Practice – a fine art based course.


I fell in love with silkscreen printing and looked to explore ways to create unique patterns. Having a passion for history I have always enjoyed visiting museums, especially military, transport and industrial museums where the stories and the interesting artefacts within them fascinate me. I soon realised that this was a great source of inspiration to create my own pattern designs. I began by photographing old tools, military items and all manner of mechanical & industrial devices, cogs, dials and engine parts from old aircraft, ships & vehicles for example. This is perhaps an unexpected starting point when you look at my final patterns but this is what I love about the process of design, the possibilities are endless and the journey is extremely individual.


Using a computer programme I would then select from the photographs interesting abstract shapes and textures. These details were then further developed into pleasing contemporary patterns and then exposed on to a screen ready for printing.


I have always been keen on using high quality natural materials such as linen, wool and leather. These fabrics are extremely hard wearing & durable and I am keen to ensure a practical and sturdy construction when creating my bags so that the finished product will not only look good but will ultimately last.


I make each bag by hand and when you make a purchase from me you can feel good about supporting the handmade market as well as helping the environment by choosing natural fabrics and adopting a ‘Make it Last’ Philosophy.