Visiting the LAF artists: Caroline Sullivan and Tracey Saunders

By Sally Pudney on 24th March 2016

This week saw the last two visits to the artists who will be exhibiting at the Lexden Arts Festival this year.

On Monday I had a trip up to Martlesham Heath, north of Ipswich, to see Caroline Sullivan. Caroline designs and makes her own knitwear range, using luxury yarns sourced in Scotland. I love her sense of colour – she is so clever at putting together complex patterns that are really attractive, and all her garments are beautifully finished off – for example, she was wearing one of her own waistcoats, as you can see in the photo below, and even the button band had a really intricate pattern running down it!

Caroline showed me the room on the side of her house where she has her studio – with tall shelves full of colourful spools of yarn, and her knitting machine, surrounded by sketchbooks and samples. She explained that she uses a very basic knitting machine, as it allows one to be much more creative.

Caroline Sullivan in her studio

Caroline Sullivan in her studio

Caroline will be showing jackets and waistcoats, neck warmers (circular scarves), fingerless gloves and a range of hat styles, and I know the ladies of Lexden – and further afield! – are going to love them! Caroline’s website is being updated at present, but information about her can be found on the Suffolk Craft Society’s website.

The following day I set off with Graham in the opposite direction, this time down to Burnham on Crouch to visit watercolour artist and graphic designer, Tracey Saunders. Tracey uses vibrant colours in her paintings, and often focusses on the boatyards, and old allotment sheds near where she lives by the river. She told us that she usually sticks to a palette of colours derived from her knowledge of printing inks acquired through her work in graphic design.  Tracey showed me the little upstairs room that she uses as a studio – it is very well organised and uses every available space! She organises the Burnham Art Trail, which takes place in June each year, and has an online presence on that website, www.burnhamarttrail.co.uk

Tracey Saunders in her studio

Tracey Saunders in her studio

Although I have now completed all the visits, there is one other artist who will be exhibiting with us this year, and that is the jeweller, Penny Williams. Penny lives in Hockley, Birmingham, and makes brooches, necklaces and ear-rings in silver and other metals such as brass and copper. They feature delightful quirky designs of tigers, lions, cats, dogs and chickens, and she also makes really charming little clocks with tick-tock pendulums (although they are really battery operated) which each have little creatures sitting on the roof or swinging from the pendulum below. To find out more about Penny and have a preview of her work, go to www.pennywilliams.co.uk

Just getting the simnel cake out of the oven now – it smells delicious! 🙂


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