I’ve been busy studying the lace designs of Amy Atkin who claimed to be the first female designer of Nottingham machine lace. The reasons are twofold, first I want to do some academic research into her life and her designs, and second because I’m planning a practice-based response to her designs as well. The format for my own lace designs will be long thin rectangles so I’ve been trying to work elements of Amy’s designs into that shape and you can see my initial thoughts in the sketches above. Studying Amy’s designs, which are mainly deep valances or curtains rather than strips of lace, suggests that she designed a main focal element for the base of the lace and worked upwards. She favours designs that incorporate flowers and foliage, whether this was her preference or the favoured style of the time I don’t know. Some of the designs also have an Art deco feel to them which would have been a new influence at the time she was designing in the early twentieth century. I’m enjoying trying to get the feel of her style and find her flowing style of design is easy to work with and lends itself to handmade as well as machine made lace.