Alison Bailey Smith

Alison’s work has spanned over 2 decades and three different countries since leaving Edinburgh College of Art in 1990.The motivation behind Alison’s work comes from being the child of post war parents, Scottish thriftiness and an avid watcher of Blue Peter! Her need to re-use, re-develop and re-create can be seen in her wide use of ordinary materials with extra-ordinary results.

Although her training was initially in Jewellery and silver-smithing at Edinburgh College of Art with Dorothy Hogg and Bill Kirk, she has crossed over successfully into the world of textiles, costume and fashion – evident in her numerous awards (Scottish Fashion Designer of the Year, Recycling Fashion Designer of the Year and various awards for Fibre in North America and Australasia).

Alison’s staple ingredient in her work is wire that she reclaims from old televisions, the older the better. She has found over a hundred different colours and hues of copper and aluminium wire. Lately though, due to the rate of development in technology, she is finding it harder to find the old television sets and has had to resort to buying various colours of wire. There is always a high component of re-used materials in her work – whether it is re-using charity shop finds or sweetie wrappers to get the right colour. She has become increasingly aware of how wasteful our society is becoming.

She began teaching rag rugging in 2009 and will be showing her rugs based on art work from Simon Sherry for The Eye Fund exhibition in May 2017 made from repurposed clothes.