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Niki Fulton

Textile Designer

After graduating from Aberdeen University in 1987 Niki Fulton has worked in the design industry specifying contemporary furniture, lighting and artwork for public and private projects, designing colour palettes for a paint company and speaking and writing about colour theory. She is now focusing on surface pattern design for textiles for her range of ties and scarves.

Her designs have a feeling of rhythm and movement through careful placement and interaction of her chosen colour palette. She is inspired by her experiences, of urban and rural landscape, and also from arts and poetry.

Her range of neckwearhas recently been worn on TV and she is building up an interesting celebrity client list.

All Niki's work is designed by her in her Edinburgh studio and printed and stitched in the UK - some designs are printed locally on to local Fife Linen Union, some on 100% Irish linen and the silks are printed in the UK's home of silk, Macclesfield.

I love pattern but I like to keep it contained in a limited space so working on the scale of ties and scarves gives me the perfect size of blank canvas. I like to create colour energy by placing sometimes unexpected colours adjacent to each other which surprises the brain and in turn causes a little energy spark. This is why each tie has a little hidden colour 'gift' of a hand stitched back tack on the reverse side of the tie.

I also like to work with symbolism - take 'Fennel Tangle' print for instance - I enjoy thinking about the "wondrous powers" of Fennel as described in the poem The Goblet of Life by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. The fennel plant also displays strength, vigour and elegance as it rapidly colonies the sand dunes of Northern Brittany. I feel therefore this must be a good plant to have depicted on a tie and scarf! The print 'Breton Signal' has been designed with signals pointing in various directions in order to bring some movement and energy to the classic seaside Breton Stripe. 'Inky Cog' on the other hand is a playful take on a modern pinstripe and with a repeating motif of an industrial cog rather than high end status symbol.

I also like to think of where sections of colour will be when they are worn. On 'Love You' scarf, the border is a gradation of colour so if worn in the classic front knot, the points of the two scarf ends will be different from each other highlighting the subtle border gradation. Other prints such as 'Field Trip' are purely observational - Field trip is inspired by looking at fields around the Hill of Tarvit in Fife. Its my take on a modern arable patchwork. Hopefully the prints will stand up for themselves without even needing to know the backstory but each print does have a unique story behind its design.


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