Tell me about yourself, Vernon. Where is home for you?
I was born in Norfolk in the UK and still have a strong connection to this rural part of England. Living in London can be very frenetic so I feel very fortunate to have a home in this beautiful rural part of the country, where I can go and relax surrounded by nature.
What was your first experience with needlepoint and who taught you to stitch?
I studied Fashion Textile design and after graduating moved to London for work. I spent many years in the textile industry and gained the opportunity to travel to the U.S. amongst other places. Working in fashion was a great way to discipline myself and develop a strong work ethic.
I was introduced to needlepoint by a friend who was working for one of the few bespoke needlepoint companies in existence at that time in London, they needed a freelance designer and my experience in fashion served me well with the discipline needed to design on canvas.
I really enjoyed the challenge of interpreting artwork on to canvas and the process of seeing designs come to life when stitched.
What is your process for designing canvases like?
My designs always start with lots of research from which I produce many drawings, gradually pulling the ideas together into a design I’m happy with. Then the work of translating the design onto the canvas begins. I paint on the stitch, so there is often a lot of counting involved. This is the interesting bit where I witness my design becoming a canvas that can be stitched.
Where do you find inspiration?
Inspiration comes from all over the place. I’m always on the lookout for ideas. It can come from something I see in an interior magazine to a fashion print in a shop window. Pinterest is a great resource for ideas for seasonal projects.
Do you have a favorite canvas in your line?
Of all the designs I’ve produced I think my favourite has to be ’The Toy Store’ Advent calendar. It was one of my first collaborative pieces and my first multi piece design. I think the final result is wonderful and a project that will become an heirloom for the families of those that have stitched it.