The Begg X Co Degree Show Preparation Bursary

School of Design Textile Design

Holley Sweet ((she/her))

Through Covid and multiple lockdowns people were discouraged from touching one another. A friendly touch of the arm, handshake or even high-five was frowned upon. I looked into “Touch Starvation” for my Design History and Theory module which also strengthened my interest and knowledge on the topic. This made me question if there was something that could bring similar feelings of comfort and ease within a material, whilst also reducing the spread of germs as there could be less physical touch interactions in the cautious future. Obviously physically touch can not be replaced but for me vibrant colours and fun textures could potentially bring some form of comfort and happiness to the wearer when touching, handling and looking at the material.

“Sensory Colour”

“Sensory Colour”

To start my project off I took photographs of things around me that I found intriguing, then collating and grouping as I went along. I then set my focus more on colours and textures resulting in the creation of the  colour  bank of information that I could mix and match when it came to design exploration as I had already matched the yarns to the desired colours and textures found in my images.

The “Colour and Touch” collection appeals to the tactile senses. I have explored this by playing with interesting textured yarns as well as making engaging structures through the uses of elastic that make the fabric more interactive and touchable. For example, a few of the pieces resemble a bubble wrap like feel. The raised chunky, circle figuring is made more prominent and 3D with the use of elastic in-between, engaging our tactile senses to push and squeeze the 3d form.

My textiles for this project have been designed to be worn on the body or near, as a bag or accessory, so that the fabric can be accessible to touch by the wearer.


For my complimentary project I looked at making trims for fashion/accessories as well as interior possibilities. I have taken inspiration from my main project for primary research and colour. The trims are made from found materials as well as yarns used in my main project.