Hi Jasmine, please tell everyone a bit about yourself and introduce your brand & products.
My name is Jasmine Linington and I am an Edinburgh based textile artist and designer, working with seaweed. I graduated last July (wow! Where has the time gone!) from Edinburgh College of Art with a Master of Fine Arts in Textiles, where I spent my time exploring the potential of seaweed within the textile and fashion markets.
Since then, I have set up my studio which is thankfully in my home, where I have so far been working on textile art, interior accessories and jewellery using my favourite material, seaweed.
My brand targets the eco-conscious consumer, seeking beautiful, sophisticated and timeless pieces that honour the wonderful materials offered by nature.
How would you describe your style and where do you take inspiration from?
Nature has always been the place from where I seek my inspiration. In recent years this has been mainly from the coast and in particular seaweed in its natural surroundings. The amazing colours, textures and composition of the various species of seaweed fill me with intrigue, which is why I wanted to explore how I could incorporate seaweed as a material within my work.
I value and aspire to make beautiful, timeless and tactile textiles that are treasured forever. If my work can encourage the observer to pause for a moment, reflect and enjoy my pieces, then I feel I have done my job.
Please tell us more about the materials that you use, and how this came about.
I feel fortunate to have always lived near the coast. However, it wasn’t until about 7 years ago when I pushed myself beyond my slight fear of seaweed and noticed how incredibly interesting it was. I can remember that moment so clearly. I quickly found this ubiquitous plant to be not only naturally beautiful, but also a highly sustainable and multifaceted material.
Having fallen in love with seaweed, I have spent the last few years exploring the ways in which I can incorporate the material into my work, and it forms the basis for all my pieces. I have developed the marine plant into seaweed coloured beads and kelp sequins, as well as seaweed dyes to colour the SeaCell fibre fabrics I make in my studio.
Where do you source the seaweed from that you use? Can you tell us what this is like as a material to work with?
I hand harvest seaweed, under licence, from the south east coast of Scotland to create my dyes and embellishments.
My kelp sequins are best described as leather-like in touch. They are really lovely to work with as they are supple and are very soothing to touch. Naturally, they have a pleasant seaside aroma from the fresh seaweed that I harvest in its natural state. The aroma significantly fades during my processes and with time, leaving a very subtle hint of the seaside. I am told it evokes a holiday happiness.
My seaweed coloured beads that showcase the unexpected variety of colours offered by seaweed are very fun to work with as they add sophisticated and timeless pops of natural colour to my work. They are also eye catchingly shiny on one side and have a contrasted matte finish on the other.
Can you tell us a bit about the process behind making your textiles and accessories?
The fabrics I make in my studio are created using a fibre called SeaCell (made up of seaweed and eucalyptus cellulose) and are constructed into fabrics using embroidery techniques. This technique creates beautiful and unique textures and is often mistaken for weave. I will either dye these using natural dyes or leave it in its original colour, alabaster or natural.
The embellishments that I have developed, using my own processing techniques, are then embellished onto my fabrics by hand using my designs that have been inspired by seaweed and its surrounding habitat. I then turn these into pieces of wearable art, jewellery, embellishments for the luxury market and textile wall-hangings/art.
I have very recently launched a range of earrings using my seaweed embellishments of kelp sequins and seaweed beads. I am delighted with these unique and timeless pieces, which appeal to an eco-conscious consumer.
What is your favourite part of the process?
Now that is a tricky question! I love working with all my seaweed materials from start to finish. It’s such a pleasure being able to work so closely with nature and watch it transform into pieces that can be cherished. That being said, on a day like today where the sun is shining upon us, my favourite part of the process will have to be a much-needed beach trip. I haven’t been since the start of lockdown, and I am looking forward to replenishing my stock.
Can you tell us a bit about the area you live/work in?
I live and work in the West End of Edinburgh. It is a great place to be, and most places are within walking distance. I enjoy the beautiful and varied architecture, independent shops and access to parks and open spaces.
What would you recommend doing/seeing in your area to someone visiting?
If you enjoy a long walk, then Arthur’s seat is a must to get a full view over the city. Be warned though, it can get pretty windy up there. If you’re looking for something a little more relaxed, then Calton Hill also gives you lovely views of the city and you can treat yourself to a well-deserved glass of wine at The Lookout.
There are some fantastic galleries. One being the Dovecot studios where you can sometimes see the artisans working on tapestries from the mezzanine.
If you have time to venture out of Edinburgh, I would recommend hopping on the train to North Berwick. If you’re here in the summer, they open up a lobster shack in the harbour and the food is delicious.
Are you working on any new designs at the moment?
I am working on some commissions of textile wall-hangings and art-work at the moment, as well as a small collection of high-end cushions and throws using my SeaCell embroidered fabrics.
I have also collaborated with Michelle Lowe-Holder, an artist/maker based in London and Rachel Clowes, founder of The Sustainable Sequin Company in Brighton. I am excited to see where this goes.
Towards the end of June, I will be launching another colour to my seaweed colour earring collection.
I am taking on commissions for textile artwork pieces too, so please do get in touch with any questions or enquiries. I would love to hear from you.
Can you pick out 4 or 5 things in your working space that you can’t live without?
1. The first of course has to be my seaweed.
2. My 2 embroidery machines for making my fabrics and testing out new ideas.
3. My jars filled with seaweed, which I use for inspiration, dyes and creating my embellishments.
4. A needle and thread for embellishing my seaweed beads and sequins.
5. My cork board for pinning up my beach photography, textile developments and much needed lists (I couldn’t live without my lists!).
WHERE CAN WE FIND YOUR WORK?