I can’t believe It’s actually come to an end. However, it’s safe to say it didn’t go as smoothly as I would have hoped, today especially. I was aware that my drape wire was bowing slightly, however I had to prioritise, and having to make my cushion a second time had already set me back 2 hours this morning which was the last thing I needed. I told Keireine I was concerned that I wouldn’t have a chance to put the extra bracket up to hold the wire, and she reassured me not to worry and it would be fine. However, 2 o clock came, and I was told that the extra bracket needed to go up. Needless to say this was the last thing I needed to hear 2 hours before my final deadline. The next hour and a half consisted of about 5 or 6 level 5’s trying either to help me put up the bracket, or stop me panicking about whether or not I’d get everything done in time. There were a lot of tears and hyperventilation on my part, but we got there in the end. Safe to say I wouldn’t have been able to help if it weren’t for the support of my friends and the level 5’s along with Helen and Keireine. Without a doubt the most stressful day of my entire life. 4 o clock came, and the overwhelming build up of emotions from the stress of the day lead to us all being in tears, happy mostly. I can honestly say I’ve never been more proud of work that I’ve produced, throughout school, foundation and three years here at Cardiff Met, I never thought I’d reach the standard with my designs as I have, and proves that the work I’ve put in over the years has all been worth it.
Safe to say these past two weeks would have been a lot more stressful if it weren’t for my level 5 buddy, Adele. I couldn’t be more grateful for the help she’s given me in the run up to the degree show. I know a few of the girls have had certain issues with their buddy’s not coming in every day, not being available for them, and sometimes complaining about the jobs they had to do. Adele on the other hand came in every day, willing to help with whatever needed doing, never complained once, and worked solidly on whatever task it was that I gave her to do. Even when it comes to things that she had never done properly before, like steaming my drapes and stitching the headers onto my designs. I cannot praise her enough for how hard she’s worked, and I’m really pleased that we had been paired together.
I’d also like to give special mention to the tutors and technicians for the support they’ve given throughout my time here. Without their guidance and help I wouldn’t have developed into the designer that I am today. I had a quick chat with Helen, post panic attack this afternoon. Helen mentioned the fact that I’m not a ‘small, motif designer’, and being from a fine art background it just isn’t me. I couldn’t agree more, and it’s nice to see that I’m understood as a designer, and that I’m recognised as being different to a lot of the other girls on the course. It’s really heartwarming to know that my tutors understand who I am and how I work, and I’d like to think that they would also agree that this is my most successful body of work to date. While the tutors have overseen my projects and ideas, and how they develop, it’s Steve and Maggie that have really spurred who I am as a designer. Though I’m not a stitcher, Maggie has given me a tremendous amount of help over the past month especially, until now I wouldn’t have had a clue how to fit a zip, or back a drape, and though I know my products aren’t perfect and without fault, I’m proud to have produced what I have, and I wouldn’t have been able to do so without her guidance. Steve on the other hand has helped me a huge amount throughout my entire time here as a student, I’ve always been more of a printer, be it from screen printing, or experimenting with dye techniques, and without Steves knowledge and guidance I wouldn’t have discovered certain techniques that are now processes that I use often within my work, so I’m incredibly grateful for all the help and guidance that I’ve received throughout my time as a textiles student, from academics, to technicians.
Lastly, it’s safe to say I wouldn’t have been able to survive these three years if it wasn’t for our close group of friends. The support that we’ve given to each other over the past year especially can not go un-noticed. Be it from helping with certain techniques, ideas, or even picking eachother up when one of us was down. I’ve come away from uni with a group of girls that I look at more as family than friends. We’ve spent so much time together recently that we seem to be more of a family unit than friends, and it’s this that I’m more grateful for than anything else.
Now that my designs are all finished in regards to headers, overlocking, stickers put on, on the hangers, and ready to be set up. Adele and I can finally start setting up the final exhibition. However I’ve hit snag after snag when trying to figure out the best way of suspending my drapes. Initially I had wanted to suspend them from the ceiling, but that wouldn’t have been appropriate. My next idea was to buy triple tracking so I’d have a way of layering them behind one and other. However when I went to look at the tracking over the weekend, i realised the fittings weren’t wide enough to hold my drapes, and thus they wouldn’t have hung properly. My last idea is to hopefully be able to buy fishing wire and fittings this evening from IKEA and suspend them thusly. Hopefully this will work. Other than that I’m starting to run out of jobs for Adele to do, which is proof of how hard she’s been working. Any job I give her she flies through, which is great, especially considering the standard doesn’t drop even with the pace that she’s working at. I can’t praise her enough for everything she’s doing for me, and hopefully that will continue until the end of the week. (I have no doubt it will.)
I’ve only met Adele once so as of yet I don’t know a lot about how she works, whether she’s a stitcher or a print maker, or even if she’s in every day. So the next week will be interesting, however I have every faith that she’ll be a hard worker as a buddy. Fortunately my designs have arrived already, which puts us in great stead for the next week. I couldn’t be more thrilled with how they’ve come back, and means that myself and Adele can get to work with putting the finishing touched on them, like overlocking, trimming and headers. The fact that they’ve arrived already gives us the advantage of not having to panic at the last minute to get everything put together. Hopefully the next two weeks will go swimmingly.
As I said last week, this week could’ve only got better, and in fairness it did. The majority of the spaces were built and there wasn’t much left to do in the studio meaning we could focus on helping our buddies with their actual work. Fortunately for me Daisy had pretty much finished all of her last details so the only thing for us to do was construct her space, which we did in no time.
The same unreliable girls from our year didn’t show up again, and we once again had to cover for them, but the gratitude we recieved from the third years helped with our frustration a lot. On the last day (their final deadline) it was clear that we’d all have to pull together to help certain third years, but as soon as the countdown had finished and theyd all handed in their work you could see the relief in their eyes, which for us was very heartwarming, but not only that i felt genuinely proud knowing that we’d helped them in finishing everything.
I’m genuinely going to miss working with daisy and the other third years, its been fun! even if we were let down by our own cohort. Hopefully they won’t feel the same next year if their buddies don’t show up eh?
So after what seems like a very stressful and eventful week, I’m glad I can finally say Daisy’s space is all clean, painted and ready for the construction of her shelves and putting everything else up. Honestly, i couldn’t be happier with being paired with Daisy, we’ve had a great time working with eachother this week, and I’ve never worked with someone that I’ve been able to laugh with (and occasionally at) so much before. The third years are all lovely considering the factthat a lot of our girls aren’t showing up and about 8 of us are having to pull together and cover everyone elses work, whoch isn’t fair on us or the third years, however I’m not willing to let the faults of our cohort let the third years down, which is why there are a few of us pulling together as much as possible to help everyone out.
What’s also really getting to a lot of us is that some of our own cohort are coming in, saying that their buddies don’t need them for the day and going home, while some third years are left without a buddy, but not only that, but the rest of us whose buddies do in fact need us are also helping other third years out. If your buddy doesn’t need you, find someone else to help! Don’t just go home and leave the rest of us to deal with everything.
However, I think the third years can see how hard some of us are working to ensure that everything gets done, and are really understanding and geateful for everything we do. Hopefully next week can only get better.