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Kate Farley

Kate is an Associate Professor and Course Leader for BA (Hons) Textile Design.

Predominant teaching specialisms are drawing, printed textile design, contextual studies / research and professional practice.

Kate leads the strategic delivery of the Textile Design discipline, managing the staff team across the teaching and learning experience. She leads on course development and academic processes including recruitment, assessment and progression while working with other professional services at the university and beyond.

With significant and highly varied design experience for over twenty years Kate has an established professional profile in surface design and visual communication featuring industry collaborations and site-specific commissions with leading companies such as Formica and Transport for London. This year her book, REPEAT Printed Pattern for Interiors was published by Bloomsbury Publishing Plc.

Practice and Research

Visual communication and visual narratives are key aspects of my design practice and academic research. I create pattern and surface designs for wide ranging contexts and clients both nationally and internationally, with outcomes large and small scale, for fashion, interiors and the built environment.

I have designed for clients including Transport for London / London Transport Museum, Barbican Centre, Birmingham Airport, Boden, Design for Today, David Mellor Design and the NHS. Projects include exhibitions, graphic artworks, books and design for clients in fashion, interiors and public art, with outcomes such as exterior surface designs, collections of giftware, interior fabrics & wallpaper.

I am particularly interested in bespoke pattern design, building brand identity and cultural heritage within pattern compositions, using drawing, printmaking, collage, photography and digital manipulation. I focus my practice on British made products, working with leading manufacturers for production and fabrication of project outcomes on both hard and soft material surfaces. I have launched three collections to date under the Kate Farley brand.

I contribute to academic research with papers and presentations on the subject of surface design and pattern construction and am currently working on a book relating to printed pattern design, due to be published in 2022.

My work is in international collections including: Tate, British Library, London Transport Museum Archive, Wexford Artists’ Book Archive, Ireland Yale Center for British Arts USA, Louisiana State University, USA.

Since 2000: International media features in print and online including: Elle Decoration, WGSN, House and Gardens, Selvedge, Vogue Australia, House Beautiful, Country Living, Trend Bible, Mix Magazine, Period Living, The English Home, The Daily Telegraph & Fiera Magazine

  • 2023 publication of solo authored book: REPEAT Printed Pattern for Interiors, for Bloomsbury Publishing Plc.
  • 2020: Collaboration with Japanese fashion brand Stamps Inc. launching Scribble collection
  • 2020 Key Note: ‘Motif – pattern potential: design narratives and brand identities’, & Pecha Kucha ‘Pugin’s truth to materials’ Motif Tsunami symposium, Nottingham Trent University
  • 2019 Paper: ‘Seeking Gwen White’, Women in Print Symposium, House of Illustration, London
  • 2019 Paper: ‘Taking the pages out of the book’, Turn the Page Artists Book Symposium, Norwich
  • 2019 Article: ‘Cloth as Pattern: the Visual Language of Weave for Print Design’ Intellect Journal, Drawing: Research, Theory and Practice: Issue 4.1
  • 2019: Research Paper ‘Constructing pattern: a new language of cloth’  FTC conference, Bolton University
  • 2018: Designer of bespoke surface pattern for Birmingham Airport refurbishment of the south terminal
  • 2018: Designer of ‘Gardening with Mr Bawden’, book published by Design for Today
  • 2017-18: ‘Construct’ work featured in ‘Ambiguous Implements’ touring show
  • 2017: Designer of Parks & Garden, 4 posters for Transport for London, on the London Underground network Sept – Dec 2017 and four limited editions of prints for sale at the London Transport Museum
  • 2017: Winner of ‘Best home improvement’ category at the House Beautiful awards 2017 with The Window Film Company for ‘Construct’ window film
  • 2016: Launched own brand design collection ‘threads’ including a collaboration with The Window Film Company and Formica Group, selected to show at London Design Festival / London Design Fair, London
  • 2016: ‘Rhythms’ pattern print collection for Barbican Centre London shop
  • 2016: Bespoke surface pattern designs for Tektura Wallcoverings
  • 2015: Designed bespoke ‘Pride’ pattern for David Mellor Design
  • 2015: Launched own brand design collection ‘Construct’ including a collaboration with The Window Film Company and Formica Group, selected to show at London Design Festival / London Design Fair, London
  • 2014: Launched ‘Hanbury’ wallpaper, London Design Festival
  • 2013: Solo show ‘Plotting Prints’ at Tinsmiths, Ledbury
  • 2013: Designed bespoke ‘Chelsea’ pattern for David Mellor Design
  • 2012: Launched own brand design collection ‘Plot to Plate’, selected to show at Spotted showcase at Top Drawer trade show, London
  • 2010: The order of things, site-specific large-scale exterior wall-scape for Newhall Square, Birmingham
  • 2007-09: Creative Convenience, bespoke commission / collaboration on public toilet refurbishments for Colchester Borough Council, Essex.

Academic activities

  • Currently – NUA Steering Group Member of the Association of Fashion & Textiles Courses
  • Currently – Arts University Bournemouth, External Examiner
  • 2021 – Awarded Associate Professor in Design, Norwich University of the Arts
  • 2015 – 2019 – Hereford College of Arts, External Examiner
  • 2018 – ongoing – exhibition reviewer, TEXTILE: Cloth and Culture
  • 2017 – Higher Education Academy, awarded Senior Fellow status
  • 2015 – ongoing – Bloomsbury UK, Book Reviewer

See work by Kate on the NUA Repository