Scottish designer’s art for windows

As a child, Sarah Campbell spent her summer holidays on the Isle of Lismore. On walks, she and her artist mother would pick tufts of sheep's wool from the barbed wire fences and take it home. There they would wash, card and spin it, turn it into fabric on a loom and dye it.

Now working as a designer, Sarah has woven those childhood lessons into the one-off "textile paintings" doubling as window blinds that she creates in her workshop on the tiny island which sits under the mountains of Morvern in the Firth of Lorne for her company Mogwaii Design.

After a client bought one of her textile paintings to decorate their hallway, Sarah realised there was a market for her talents and set up design company Mogwaii, which specialises in one-off art blinds.

“The window is a great place to display art. There is a wonderful aspect of light coming though it and changing throughout the day, ” she says. “One of the things I love about the blinds is the opportunity to play with light and shade. I also really like the fact that you can fold them up and put them away. Sometimes I think we are too precious with our art.”

Sarah worked on a series of blinds for a client’s Swedish home. “I am influenced by what is going on outside the windows. On one side there is a view of some lovely woods and on the other, water and rocks. I am using leaf shapes and water patterns, ” she says.

She is also picking up on colours that are being used within the house – rich greens and duck-egg blues. Sarah sets up samples, photographs them on a digital camera and transmits them to the client to get their feedback.

Although she works mainly in felt, Sarah is currently looking at creating a range in specially-made tweeds. As well as the custom-made art piece blinds, she also has a standard range of cushions, throws and blinds that retail at between Pounds56 for a hand-made cushion to Pounds 900 for a large standard-size blind.

Mogwaii designs are already being sold in the US, the Designers Guild in London, the Roger Billcliffe Gallery in Glasgow, the Bonhoga Gallery in Shetland and on herwebsite. “There isn’t really much out there that makes the best use of the window, ” she says. “Most blinds you can buy are boring.”

Recently, Sarah has expanded her range to include hand made handcrafted ‘character’ cuddly toys  called ‘Tweedies”.