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Lewis moorland in winter

Dathan a' Mhòinteach – The Colours of the Moor

Over my whole career, my greatest and most consistent artistic inspiration has stemmed from the childhood summers I spent on the Lewis moor during the 1950s and 60s. For six weeks in each year of my childhood, my family moved from our usual home to the aìrigh (sheiling) on our ancestral geàrraidh (pasture). I belong to the very last Hebridean generation to take part in this traditional form of transhumance and I consider myself uniquely privileged to have lived intimately with nature in such a rare and intensely beautiful environment.

I grew up with a knowledge and understanding of the moor that was engendered by being a living part of it myself. This has given me a profound and lasting connection with its landscape, life and language, and its influence flows through my work at every level.

Watch the Creating Colours Video to see some of the Lewis moorland, gain an insight into using crotal sustainably for natural dyeing, and have a look at the inspiration and process involved in my Hebridean 2 Ply yarn. The Mamba Designer Palette shows how my Mamba artwork has inspired a 12 skein colour palette, and Mòinteach shows my new moorland take on the Meadowsweet cardigan.

Mòinteach patterncard knitwear design by Alice Starmore in pure wool Hebridean 2 Ply hand knitting yarn