Published on : Thursday, August 28, 2014
Upon finding out the results of the New Designers BCFA FR One Award, Cliq Designs were delighted to spot a familiar face on the podium.
Many years have passed since Jessica Leigh Calvert spent 2 weeks at Cliq Designs in Preston, a member of the BCFA, as part of a GCSE work placement from All Hallows Catholic High School in early 2007.
“Whilst at Cliq I was given a project to work through from concept to completion; I designed and made a quilted bed throw. I had recently done up my room at home and it was a really fun process working with the colours and textures, drawing out my ideas and then being able to see the finished product.” Getting involved in client meetings proved to be a great opportunity for Jessica to see first-hand what a career in the industry entailed.
Cliq Designs, nestled in the traditional textile climes of the North-west, produces a wide range of soft furnishings for hotels to order. These include bed throws, wall panels, valances and cushions with an emphasis on quilted products. They have recently launched quilted acoustic panels, onto which designs can be transformed from sketch to 3D stitch.
Whilst working with the company, Jessica was studying art at GCSE level. Her interest in fashion then took her to Newman College in Preston to study Art and Design in Textiles.
“I came to Cliq because I was able to gain a better understanding of the industry and how certain sectors work. At this point I don’t think I knew exactly where I wanted to be within the textile industry. I was just excited to be in a textile environment.”
After A levels, Jessica completed her Art Foundation at Winstanley College in Wigan, from which she was accepted at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in 2011 to study BA Textile Design. “At Saint Martin’s I was able to learn about the construction of fabrics, including how to design and make my own from the drawing board. I have always been fascinated with fabrics, textures, creating looks, and my portfolio is specifically dobby and jacquard hand woven fabrics.” Gradually Jessica realized that her true passion was interiors – looking at houses and hotel interiors and how they create a story and a concept.
Winning the New Designers BCFA FR One Award has landed Jessica a four week internship with the design studio at FR One in Antwerp to assist in the design of their new collection. The judges were impressed by her enthusiastic approach to textiles, shown through her in-depth research and tireless efforts to turn her vision into a commercial product.