Sisters Eleanor Baker and Frances Barber grew up in the Herefordshire countryside, imbued with a love of beautiful and timeless interiors by their mother Jan Baker, an interior designer and collector of hand-embroidered fabrics.
Welland & Wye is a boutique seller of hand embroidered fabrics. The collection embodies traditional and historical textile designs and is updated with a palette to appeal to today’s market.
Welland & Wye work with exceptional craftsman in Kashmir; families who have made their living in the mountains and valleys of the region for generations, designing and producing work which is inspired by their own natural surroundings and the cultural heritage of their relationship with European traders.
Inspired by the beautiful houses and gardens of the British counties but rooted in the reality of family, animals and friends. The pieces are classic and timeless, and will fit within the walls of the grandest parlour or the cosiest snug.
About Crewel Fabric
In the British country house of the 18th century, Jacobean embroidery, or crewel, could be found on cushions, wall-hangings, curtains, fire-screens and bed-hangings. The typical tree of life pattern, incorporating naive animals, native flora and trailing foliage forms the basis of the present-day designs. The same natural colours; dusky pinks, earthy terra-cottas, natural greens and delicate blues, with simple background cloths of linen or cotton in antique cream or tea-stain are still used today.
The East India Company established the trade for textiles along the Silk Road in the 16th and 17th centuries and since then, crewel has been produced mainly in the Northern Indian region of Kashmir, close to the border with Pakistan.
The source materials are bought from markets across Northern India from the regions where the natural resources have been used to their best advantage: linen woven by Bhagalpur craftspeople in Bihar, cotton from Gujarat, embroidery yarn from the sheep of Rajasthan.
Production of this fabric is skilled and labour intensive. Using a crochet-style hook called an aari, artisans use a running- or chain-stitch to create motifs, usually with intricate shading to enhance the richness of the palette. With more than 100,000 stitches in the average metre of fabric, and each metre taking around a week to embroider, making this fabric is a slow process in a world of fast manufacture.