ELK x RACHEL WOOD
After first meeting Rachel we fell in love with her considered work, as well as her wonderful personality.
With a keen eye and enthusiasm for colours and textures, a fibre artist and weaving teacher, Rachel groups screen printing, dressmaking, latch-hooking, macrame and tapestry weaving as a part of her everyday practice.
During her weaving workshops, Rachel creates an atmosphere for adults to reconnect with play and with their imaginations, to slow down and rejuvenate in a fun and relaxing atmosphere.
She aims to explore the powerful aspects of the community, where knowledge and skills are passed on and relationships are strengthened through sharing an experience. Rachel values her efforts in building a warm atmosphere where others can find a connection through learning new techniques and artistry.
Rachel's philosophy is to give everyone the tools to open a door to a lifetime of creativity—a skill once learnt is yours forever. We sat down with Rachel during her time in our Little Collins store to understand the foundations of her inspiring work and contagious personality.
What is your favourite local spot in Melbourne?
Fitzroy North – it’s my neighbourhood and I love it. The bike track is but a stone's throw away, there’s a pub on every corner and only a short walk to the Weavers and Spinners Guild of Victoria. I usually visit there after a pit stop for coffee at Carolina.
What’s a normal day in the life of Rachel?
Fortunately, there isn’t a normal day in the life of Rachel.
My multi-disciplinary background means you’ll often see me shuffling from one artist studio to the other. As well as my own, I work with many small businesses offering my skills in commercial macramé, screen-printing, pattern-making and product design and construction. One thing that is guaranteed though is breakfast and coffee…usually made by my partner, and too often enjoyed in bed.
Favourite travel destination?
We recently returned from a trip to Japan. I found Tokyo crowded, convenient and VERY cute. I loved it and I hope to return again soon, at least for another look around Tokyu Hands!
What’s on your bucket list for travel destinations?
I’d love to explore more of Australia. We have been talking about hiring a van and travelling up through Central Australia to Katherine. I’d love to learn more about the history of Australian weavers.
When did you first discover weaving?
I think it was probably when I was quite young, dreaming of becoming a fashion designer and ripping and fraying old pairs of jeans. I’d always had an interest in the construction of fabrics, and so that love grew and led me to studying fashion design.
What does your ideal weekend consist of?
A home-made breakfast and plunger coffee on the deck, if the suns out.
A ride to visit my favourite op shops - usually to find a new pair of jeans (as most of mine get splattered with ink). A drive to Warburton for a bush walk or to pick up my looms and visit my maker. An evening having a boogie with mates, then probably a hatha flow yoga class to unwind and prepare for the week ahead.
What projects are you working on?
Aside from preparing for an amazing summer of weaving workshops and finishing up some special commissioned pieces, I am also working on a small collection of woven works that incorporate sculpture and screen printing.
Where does your weave inspiration come from?
Anywhere and everywhere… I recently returned from a trip to Hobart to visit Bruny Island and of course, Mona. Their current exhibition ‘The Museum Of Everything’ was a reminder to stay open and to keep exploring the weird and wacky wiring of my brain.
Find out more about Rachel and her work here x