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Meet Reading based textile designer Kate Cullum


Kate and I met on the yoga mat in 2018, her as teacher and me as a complete beginner. I assumed that being a yoga teacher was Kates full time job and then I saw one of her cushions and discovered her amazing talent for textiles and design and knew we had to be friends (what with my cushion obsession and all that!)


Over the last 4 years we have collaborated a number of times on lifestyle events with her providing yoga and I have also stocked her cushions, but I am delighted Kate is now joining The Live Well on a bigger scale with her first in store retail concession. Yes, you will be able to view and order Kates rugs and cushions at The Live Well from Tuesday 30th August.


I caught up with Kate over one of our many coffees (ok and pastries!) ahead of her concession to find out more about her, her inspiration and her favourite local hang outs.


How did you get into textile design?

As a child my dad used to take me and my sister to stately homes all the time and I remember being fascinated by all the textiles and costumes, I was totally in awe of the intricate work and the fact they were made by hand really sparked something in me I knew I wanted to be involved with textiles in some shape or form from a very young age.


When I left school I took a foundation course in art and design, I then went on to study for a BA(Hons) Degree in textile design at Winchester School of art specialising in woven fabrics.



Who or what inspires your work most?

I always find this a hard question to answer as there is so much that comes from everyday life…architecture is a big influence in my work and I have a passion for Native American textiles and African art and sculpture.

My work is quite graphic and I love the Art Deco deco period, they weren’t afraid of a bold pattern! Sonia Delaunay really encompassed this with her use of shape and colour which is incredible.

What are you listening to in the studio at the moment?

There’s this brilliant guy on Instagram called Daniel Harris, also a weaver except on an epic scale! He’s started a playlist called ‘no one parties like a weaver’ and fellow weavers all across the world contribute their fave songs to it, it’s currently over 5 hours long! its so interesting seeing what other people weave to! (it’s on Spotify if you want to check it out!)



What's your favourite design/item that you have made

The first rug I ever made, I wove it on my Swedish floor loom using Berber rug wool from Morocco it was a labour of love and it was very rewarding to finally get to the end after encountering many problems along the way.


Where are your favourite local hang outs?

  • Geo Cafe for the gorgeous homemade cardamom and cinnamon buns and friendly local service!

  • Caversham Court is such a haven! I go for some peace, to think and do the odd bit of yoga by the river. The planting is glorious and I love the history of it.

  • The Fox & Hounds on Gosbrook Road, it has a really good vibe, the staff are always friendly and play some great music to go with my Gin & Tonic!


How do you like to Live Well?

For me it’s all about balance, I’ve really learnt as I’ve got older to slow down rather than be on the go all the time so now I take time to meditate and journal each morning. I also try to keep my work and family life separate other wise they just merge into one and nobody benefits.

What do you have your eye on in store at The Live Well at the moment?

The russet metal vase is gorgeous! It has lovely organic curves with that angled handle which gives it a bit of a mid century look. Perfection!


Kate and I met on the yoga mat in 2018, her as the teacher and me as a complete beginner back in 2018. I assumed that being a yoga teacher was Kates full time job and then I saw one of her cushions and discovered her amazing talent for textiles and design and knew we had tohat with my cushion obsession and all that!)l that!) that!)that!)hat!)at!)t!)!)


ABOUT KATE

Kate Cullum is a textile designer with a passion for texture and colour. Trained at the prestigious Winchester School of Art with a degree in woven textiles she designs & creates limited runs of rugs and cushions which are made by a multi generational family of weavers just outside of Jaipur, India. Committed to honouring the rich history & process of these ancient crafts and skills each rug is made to order to minimise waste and can take several weeks to weave. Small batches of tufted cushions are produced each season with new colours and designs released throughout the year.

Kate also hand weaves textiles including blankets and cushions from her studio in Berkshire using only natural fibre like wool, silk, nettle & cotton with a goal to create, clean, sustainable & biodegradable products for the home.

 

the live well is an independent interiors led lifestyle brand based in Caversham, Reading, Berkshire, founded and curated by Susie Jackson.


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