Bristol

Fashion duo Dash and Miller open Bristol weaving mill

Technical Director of the mill Zoe Acketts Image copyright Bristol Weaving Mill
Image caption The mill is the first cloth weaving mill in Bristol for 90 years

The first cloth weaving mill to operate in Bristol for 90 years has opened to manufacture a textile designed by a member of the public.

The mill in Old Market will be the main producer of Bristol Cloth using wool from Fernhill Farm on the Mendip Hills.

Bristol Cloth is a project headed by the Bristol Textile Quarter and Botanical Inks and inspired by the city's European Green Capital status.

The mill idea came from Bristol textile duo Juliet Bailey and Franki Brewer.

Image copyright Bristol Weaving Mill
Image caption Wendy Kotenko won the public vote for Bristol Cloth with her basket weave inspired design
Image copyright Bristol Weaving Mill
Image caption The designers aim to use the mill to produce local and sustainable cloth in collaboration with farmers in the South West of England

The pair who operate as Dash and Miller Studio were awarded £24,000 from the West of England Growth Fund to get the project off the ground.

Image copyright Bristol Weaving Mill
Image caption The wool used by the mill will come from sheep living on the Mendip Hills in Somerset

Dash and Miller Studio has been providing textile design and consultancy to clients including Matthew Williamson, Calvin Klein, Hugo Boss, Ralph Lauren, and Louis Vuitton for the past six years.

As well as making small runs of bespoke artisan fabric for couture fashion houses Ms Bailey and Ms Brewer intend the mill to produce local and sustainable cloth in collaboration with farmers in the South West of England.

The competition to design Bristol Cloth was won by Wendy Kotenko, a weave teacher at Falmouth University.

Her design was inspired by the region's basket weaving heritage.

The cloth was made using local wool in natural colours dyed using waste onion skin from restaurants in Bristol.

The mill is now working with Ms Kotenko to develop her cloth into upholstery including blankets and shawls.

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