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Textiles student opens her own studio

Jackie Stephens, a textiles degree student at Coleg Sir Gâr has been inspired and encouraged to start her own handweaving business called Studio Cynefin.

Whilst at college, Jackie developed a passion for weaving and making which allowed her to explore her connections to Wales through textiles, particularly weaving.

Applying her interest for designing sustainable bags and accessories, Jackie started a business in creating handwoven products.

Jackie Stephens said: “The benefits of the business are foremostly doing something that I love and learning something new every day.

“The ability to work flexibly is also a huge advantage, and I can utilise professional skills such as sales and customer service from my long career in business.   

“The main challenges for me at this initial stage is the unpredictability of sales and applying the right messages in social media.”

Jackie’s work during her degree course has been recognised by Bradford Textiles Society’s annual competition with a second-place award in the responsible design category for her experimental work, inspired by the selvedge cut from the looms during a production process at Melin Tregwynt.

Jackie Stephens added: “Coleg Sir Gâr has actively encouraged all my textile explorations and allowed me to develop my own path within its supportive learning environment.

“Practical advice and guidance have been invaluable as has the inspiration from course tutors and other lecturers.

“The enthusiasm of the college’s employability coordinator, Becky Pask, has been a huge motivation and her network and resources have helped ensure I have all the business bases covered.”