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Date published: November 11 2015

A childhood of long summers spent by the sea, rivers and mountains around Ireland was the inspiration for Berni Raeside’s knitted digitally printed work.

Berni – one of six siblings born on the northside in Killester who grew up in the family home in Drimnagh, Dublin - spent most of her early summers in Greenane, Co Wicklow, the county aptly known as the Garden of Ireland.

Her mother taught her to knit at around the age of five – part of the heritage passed on to most Irish girls at the time.

In addition to developing a successful early career in marketing, Berni has built on her creative roots as a promising crafter, working in glass painting, dress and jewellery making among others. She was inspired to study Textile Design at the University of Derby by seeing how the developments in direct-to-textile printing could add that extra element to knitting that she had been looking for. 

As part of her textile design degree course she returned to the Irish coastline for inspiration, reflecting her enduring and deep love of the Atlantic Ocean, the crashing waves, the wildness of the sound and a fascination that life survives even in the harshest of climates, from the crevices of the limestone rocks to the lichen on the sea wall.

Her debut collection Aran Ambitions consists of chunky knit blankets, cushions and luxurious wraps that envelop and protect. The colours reflect the colours of the Irish coastline including subtle greens, lilacs and yellows, with a light grey yarn running through each colour way that pulls the collection together.

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