Freya Moses is Senior Technician in Printed Textiles at Falmouth University
I could use this opportunity talk about my role here at Falmouth University or even about my own design work, my influences, or my design process but what I would like to do is talk about how I got to this point.
This is me.
Portrait from Freya Momomoses X Dom Moore photography shoot
I have always felt like I was creative, for as long as I can remember. My mum is extremely gifted (she can do pretty much whatever creative project she turns her hand to) and her mum was an amazing painter. It’s in our blood. But I think my creativity was awoken when my parents took my older sister and me out of school and off on an adventure, travelling around Europe and the USA. I was only 5 at the time but there are certain things that I remember so vividly – the giant eggs that top the wall of the Salvador Dali museum, climbing up in to the crown of the Statue of Liberty, thinking how small the Mona Lisa was when I saw it in real life, and exploring Gaudi’s incredible Park Guell which sparked a fascination with the Sagrada Familia – apparently I used to draw it from memory for months after! I was so lucky to have parents who wanted to embed this culture and creativity in us from an early age.
We settled in Cornwall in the end and I started straight into the second year of primary school. It was obvious I didn’t fit in, I had been on this wonderful inspirational journey which meant I was wearing clothes that we had bought from European markets, I had hair braids from locals we had stayed with when there were no rooms available in hostels and I had this knowledge of the world that most 6 year olds didn’t have. My head just worked and thought in a different way now. We all saw this as a good thing but I think the other kids at school just thought I was weird and as a result I got bullied. That continued throughout primary school, secondary school and even college. It made me not want to be different, to look different, to think differently, to be what I was meant to be – creative. I dropped out of college and started working for New Look. I managed to be somewhat creative within my role there and I even climbed up and became a visual merchandiser but deep down I knew it wasn’t what I wanted to do. I felt cheated out of my chance to finish college, go on to university and be let loose on the creative world. It felt like I had let the bullies win, but mostly that I had let them take my creativity – the most precious part of me.
With the support and encouragement of my family and friends I took a leap of faith and I applied to study a BA(Hons) in Textile Design at Falmouth University. I wasn’t hopeful that I would get an interview as I wasn’t coming from a conventional pathway but they took a chance on me and I will be forever grateful. They gave me the opportunity to be me again and they didn’t judge. They encouraged and supported me when my confidence was lacking, they made me feel like my creativity was an asset again. During my three years on the course it was clear my work was a bit different but they embraced that and celebrated it.
I graduated in 2012 and seven months later I was back in the Textile Design department at Falmouth University, but this time as a member of staff! I now work as the senior technician for printed textiles, encouraging and supporting others in their creative pursuits. The atmosphere in the Fashion & Textiles Institute is creative, vibrant and inspiring. It sounds clichéd but we are like a family. Starting a degree can feel overwhelming and scary but we all look after each other.
And now alongside being a technician I also run my own design studio where I work on commissions, teach workshops, design and print textile collections and develop experimental and exciting print techniques. I collaborate a lot with other creatives which is such an important part of designing and I have gained a lot of experience and knowledge through doing this. I have been asked to exhibit in Liverpool at the end of this year and I have even been working with a magazine recently which is something completely new. No day in design is the same. Sure, there are ups and downs but it is really exciting so I have just got everything crossed that this momentum carries on.
I honestly would not be at this point if it wasn’t for the staff on Textile Design and I will be eternally grateful and I am also extremely proud to say I am a graduate from their course.
Photo from the Freya Momomoses X Jessie-Rose photography photo shoot
Close up of my winning design for The Snowflake Trail 2015 for Liverpool City Centre organised by Open Culture
Photo from the Freya Momomoses X Merrimaking collection photo shoot