I’ve loved making things for as long as I can remember, particularly textiles and knitting.
My mum first taught me to hand knit when I was 6, and so later at university I specialised in knitwear, learning to use hand powered and digital knitting machines.
I started Collingwood-Norris in 2016 after years of working freelance, where my work included making crochet catwalk pieces for Christopher Kane, Jasper Conran and House of Holland. I wanted to start a business that was ethical, environmentally low impact and that values the people and the skills that are part of it.
Creating high quality knitwear that will last using the best natural fibres is really important to me, and I use my skills to create contemporary designs that bring out the best in the lambswool and silk that I work with.
The lambswool I use is mulesing free, spun and dyed in Scotland using Global Organic Textiles Standard approved dyes, and is incredibly soft and fine.
I design my knitwear to transcend seasonal trends so they can be worn for many years, and offer a bespoke visible mending and creative repair service to help people rejuvenate knitwear so that it doesn’t end up in landfill.
Colour is really important to me, I love being surrounded by it, and I think wearing colours you love can improve your mood. My colour choices have initially been inspired by my childhood holidays to Mull and Iona- the white sandy beaches, blue waters, birds foot trefoil and pink buoys, with some playful combinations.
Living and working in Galashiels means I’m in the textile heartland of Scotland. I can easily visit the mill I’ve started working with in Hawick to ensure my designs are made to the same quality I achieve as I start I hand over some of my production.
Most of my designs are still made in my studio by me, with care and attention put into each part of the process. Even a scarf has at least 7 different steps in the making process, from knitting through to labelling. Every single piece- either made here in the studio or in Hawick is checked by me and hand finished- look out for the labels with either the makers name or where it was made on them.
For me, there is no higher luxury than knowing exactly where my knitwear comes from, and knowing that it has been made with a personal touch.