Meet the Maker behind Sundance Studio
Meet Emma , she is a hand-weaver based on the Mornington Peninsula just outside of Melbourne.
She started Sundance Studio (named after her sister’s horse) because she knew there weren’t any opportunities to hand weave in the textile industry. She was brave enough to build a label from scratch and truly honour her craft. “The repetitive motion, the tactility of the yarn, the capacity to plan before hand and then loose oneself in the process all appealed” Emma tells us.
Sundance Studio currently makes homewares like cushion covers, and wall hangings, as well as some accessories like bags and pouches. Style Rev exclusively carries a range of handwoven textiles and trims for soft furnishings made by Emma just for us Emma has been weaving for 4 years. She interned with some exceptional weavers, Esther Van Schuylenbergh and Rachel Snack.
What makes Sundance Special?
Emma chose this methodology of creating because she wanted to celebrate the slowness of weaving – making cloth with intention, made to be held onto for a lifetime. She says; “life seems to flash by, but weaving remains slow, snapped warp threads remind me not to rush.” She knows exactly where the fibres come from, the real value of creating the work and time involved in developing each piece. Each piece passing through her hands multiple times before the outcome is reached.
The time taken in setting up a warp is significant, which has led to the world of hand-weavers who make a living or partial living from weaving in the Western world very small. Output is small, and time invested is large. But this is the very essence of what attract Emma to her craft, “the cloth becomes treasured; each strand has run through my hand, multiple times, from winding the warp, to threading the loom, to winding the bobbins. The tactility of hand woven cloth is really special, the mark of the maker littered throughout” she tells us.
She spends a lot of time thinking about each design, how the fibres and colours will interlace with one another, what the purpose of the cloth is, how it will come together. Emma feels particularly proud to be continuing on with such an ancient craft, especially one with such a strong connection to women.
We are a HUGE believers in celebrating the imperfections at Style Rev, this is what attracts us to the handmade artisans we carry. Some view this is as a flaw from the maker, we see this is part of the final products natural beauty – we ask Emma how do you help people overcome this thinking in a world of fast fashion and homewares?
She says; “How boring it is to have everything perfect! I don’t want to live in a world where fibres are totally even, and where people are considered subpar to machines.
Imperfections are something I look forward to, they tell the story of my mood, how adventurous I was feeling, how focused I was, they say that I made this. The most beautiful cloths to me have scars and ragged edges and broken threads and floats where there shouldn’t be, they give meaning to something flat.”
If you take one thing away from reading this…
We wanted to impart on you an understanding of how long it takes to make and weave something by hand. It is an ancient art that very few choose to champion.
There is a strong sustainability message that comes from a hand-weaving – everything is chosen and made with the hands. We discuss with Emma how mass production has devalued quality materials – luxury fabrics such as linen, pure cotton and wool shouldn’t be disposable, nor should they be cheap. Fast and cheap comes at the cost of the earth.
She hopes that her work helps to elevate cloth and fibre. That it is seen as an investment, and that the time taken to make the cloth respected and valued for generations.
We look forward to seeing Sundance Studio’s collection and appeal grow. View our exclusive Sundance collection here.