A new Heriot-Watt-based creative hub which offers state-of-the-art studio and workshop space for fashion designers and visual artists, is already attracting award winners through its doors.
Top Scottish artists including printmakers Orwell & Goode, textile designer Morag McPherson and Helen Hastings, a textile designer known for her felting techniques, are among those who are using the hub, known as Resource.
The creative hub is based at Heriot-Watt University's School of Textiles and Design at the Scottish Borders Campus in Galashiels.
It allows subscribers to use world-class facilities and equipment and gives them access to technical expertise from the school's staff and industry partners.
The hub is proving extremely useful to designers and artists as it allows them to develop their ideas by practicing on new materials, techniques and equipment which otherwise might not be available to them. It's been a pleasure to watch top designers grow and develop their portfolios which, in the case of Orwell & Goode, led to an award
Hub for innovation and research in textiles, fashion and design
Morag Macpherson, who has recently been commissioned to design fabrics for the interiors of several New York Hotels, said, "The digital print department at Heriot-Watt has offered me a great facility to produce short runs of my fabrics, working closely with the School's print technician, Roger Spark. This recently enabled me to turn around some new designs on linen and rush them to a photo-shoot which resulted in a full page feature on my work in New York's Interior Design magazine."
Bronagh O'Kane of Orwell and Goode, who subscribed to Resource for help in launching a new interior range, said, "Resource helped us with our first digital print collection which launched at the Top Drawer Fair last September. We made various products like cushions, lampshades, pouffes and footstools with the new fabric. We won Best New Home Product award and received a letter from Scottish Parliament congratulating us on our success. Without the help of Resource we would not have got that collection there on time."
Heriot-Watt's School of Textiles and Design is internationally recognised as a hub for innovation and research in textiles, fashion and design, with unrivalled facilities.
Fiona Waldron, Head of the School, said, "The hub is proving extremely useful to designers and artists as it allows them to develop their ideas by practicing on new materials, techniques and equipment which otherwise might not be available to them. We're delighted that designers such as Morag MacPherson and Helen Hastings are benefiting from the supportive environment through informal peer and professional mentoring. It's been a pleasure to watch top designers grow and develop their portfolios which, in the case of Orwell & Goode, led to an award."
Resource, a partnership project between Scottish Borders Council's Arts Development team and Heriot-Watt University, is supported by Creative Scotland and Borders College.