Degree Shows '09 Kirsty’s Own ‘Little Bundle’ Inspires Her Top Textiles Show

Kedleston Road campus 504x257 Degree Shows '09 Kirsty’s Own ‘Little Bundle’ Inspires Her Top Textiles Show

Date posted: 10 June 2009

Textiles student Kirsty Spaven had some unexpected help with her final year Degree Show – her unborn daughter.

The 21-year-old, who found out she was pregnant only weeks into the final year of her three-year degree course, was inspired to make a beautiful range of baby blankets and cushions, after finding a lack of variety among the goods she saw, when shopping for her own child.

Kirsty’s work, the final project for her BA (Hons) Textile Design degree course at the University of Derby, is on display now at its Markeaton Street site as part of the University’s annual Degree Shows, which ends on Saturday (June 13).

As she is due to give birth any time now (her due date was June 9), Kirsty is wondering if she will become a mother even as people admire her unusual baby related textiles products. They are woven in pastel shades of lambs wool and cotton, in a range of Jacquard patterns.

Kirsty, of Chapel Road, Sheffield, said: “The pregnancy wasn’t planned but my partner, Bradley, and I were delighted.

“Going around looking for baby blankets and things, I was struck by the lack of variety. They all seemed to be either pink, blue or cream with little animals on them.

“That’s what made me think of doing my own range. In a way my daughter, even though she’s not born yet, helped me out, as I don’t think I would have been doing this sort of project if I wasn’t pregnant.”

Kirsty added that she had considered postponing the final year of her degree course on finding out she was pregnant, wondering if she would be able to cope.

“My tutors and fellow students have been great. The tutors have altered arrangements when I’ve not been able to get into University, and my friends have helped me by painting display boards and carrying bags for me, as I’m not supposed to stretch too much,” she said.

Her tutor John Angus, University Director of Textile Studies, added: “When design students complete their exhibition work at the end of the course, they can normally look forward to a little summer recreation after all the hectic activity. However, for Kirsty the immediate prospect is procreation.

“It’s terrific how she has managed to combine her design skills with the insights she has gained as an expectant mother. She has been creative in more ways than one and you have to applaud her timing.”

The University’s annual Degree Shows celebrate the final year work done for courses including textiles, music technology, crafts, fashion, fine art, photography, film, design, theatre, visual communications, architecture, creative expressive therapies and art therapy. Events will run from Thursday 4 June to Saturday 13 June.

For further media information please contact Press and PR Officer Sean Kirby on 01332 591891 or 07876 476103, or email

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