about

Hello, I’m Fran.

mohair bear artist at work in her home studio, wearing a lavander coloured linen dress and surrounded by handspun wool and mohair bears

I’m a toy maker & hand spinner, living between the seas in Western Brittany (France). My work is all about exploring slow & sustainable creativity through the medium of wool, one project at a time.

A bit about me

I love knitting hand-spun woolly jumpers and stomping about in puddles on rainy days. I’m drawn to wild & windswept landscapes and like nothing better than to be camping out under starry skies and waking to the smell of wood smoke. But I also love the comfort of a warming fire on a winter’s day, a piping hot cup of Redbush tea enjoyed with a freshly baked cake. And that feeling of hope that comes when casting a new knitting project on my needles.

I share my life with my French husband and our little boy. We live in a tumble down cottage in the rolling hills of Western Brittany. Together, we’re crafting a quiet life here in the country. A life anchored in the seasons, and lived slowly and wholeheartedly.

Fibre artist in her home studio, sewing at her vintage sewing machine surrounded by wool and natural fibres and wearing an ethically produced,  handmade linen dress

A bit about Woollen Hearted

Woollen Hearted is the name I’ve settled upon for my little home studio & all that is created within it’s stone walls. It is here in this sunny little room overlooking our veggie garden that I immerse myself in wool craft, at an intentionally slow pace, in those snatched quiet moments between homemaking & mothering a growing toddler.

Whether spinning, knitting, natural dyeing or toy making, my work with wool is motivated by a deep rooted love for the natural world surrounding me. From the rolling green hills to the silent oak forests, the infinite skies overhead, the raging, foaming sea on a winter’s day. Every weather pattern, every leaf and flower, cloud formation is a source of solace, peace and inspiration. An invitation to seek balance and a more mindful, slow-paced way of living. As a maker, I respond to that invitation through wool.

If my work is inspired by the environment that provides the raw materials, it is also driven by a deep rooted desire to help sustain and reinvigorate the local wool industry and perpetuate and pass down traditional artisanal techniques and ways of working with wool.

Woollen Hearted is also the name for this little journal. Within its pages, I hope to find a place to catch my breath & gather my thoughts. To talk about my making and to delight in slow & sustainable creativity, with wool that’s been grown, gathered, and crafted in these Breton green hills: hand-spun on spindle & wheel, dyed with plants, knitted on my needles, stuffed into teddy bears. It is also a place to document the gentle path (back) towards sustainable self employment.

I’m so happy you found your way here. Have a cup of tea, grab your knitting & stay a while, won’t you?

Welcome.

-Fran

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