What I do

Hello.  I’m Alaina Dunne and I am a fabric designer and product maker, working from home in Farsley, Leeds with my Labradoodle Albert.

I graduated from Leeds Beckett University in 2004 with a BA in Fine Art.  My Grandma gave me some money when I graduated, which I spent on my first sewing machine.  I taught myself to sew and quickly became addicted to creating something completely new from a bundle of fabric.

I have been itching to launch a creative business for a long time, and really, I started Baere in my mind years ago! In reality, the timing this year was perfect and so with amazing support from my husb, my family and friends, I took the plunge in January 2016 and here I am.

This website is my gallery, shop and creative outlet so please do have a look around. I’ll be regularly updating my blog – which you can view here – with insights into what inspires me to create.  Expect some pattern, craft and interior design ramblings. 

Thank you for stopping by, please do get in touch through Pinterest (@Alainabaere), Instagram (@baereaccessories), or Facebook (Baere).

To find out more about what on earth I’m doing here, please read my first blog post – Starting a creative business.

Where I live

I live and work in a village called Farsley which is just to the west of Leeds, West Yorkshire.  It’s really well positioned for Leeds, Bradford and North Yorkshire.  I love being so close to both cities and the countryside.

Farsley, along with many of the surrounding areas, was a thriving textiles village.  Sunny Bank Mills which is located on Town Street, only stopped producing cloth in the early 2000s.  It is now a creative business centre, gallery, shop and exhibition space which I can’t seem to stay away from.  It’s amazing to have such an inspirational creative space in the village – I would thoroughly recommend a visit.

52

products designed

45

meters of fabric used

14,000

stitches sewn

12,000

stitches unpicked and sewn again

My Studio

The studio space is the first room we decorated when we bought our house.  It’s an old Yorkshire stone end of terrace, it needed a lot of work doing to it when we bought it but it was totally worth it.  The house has given us the space we need to accommodate all of my crafty paraphernalia without it impinging on our everyday living space.  My husband is happy.

I wanted this room to be an exciting and interesting place to work.  After all, it’s just me in here.  I painted it emerald green and have filled the walls with art work, some of it my own, but most of it has been collected over a number of years (or stolen from my parents).  One of my favourite pieces is a tree made from buttons and zips that my late mother in law made me for Christmas one year.  She thought it was silly but I love it.  It reminds me every day that you can make something from nothing, all it takes is a little imagination and sitting down to get started.  Also, there’s nothing more special than receiving a gift that someone has thought about and made for you.

I work on two different sewing machines.  My Janome is the workhorse, it is semi industrial so I know it will last me a lifetime.  The second is a vintage Singer from the 1920s, I picked it up for £10 at a car boot sale.  I use this machine to sew the leather onto my tote bags.  It is a hand wound machine so I have a lot of control over the stitches.  With the right needle and thread, it absolutely glides through the leather and it’s really satisfying to use, and let’s face it, it looks great.

My Team

Okay, so they don’t actually do any of the designing and making, I mean Chris is all thumbs and Albert has no thumbs, BUT they are still my team.  The husb and the doodle are my motivation to get up and do my thing every day.

Although Chris doesn’t think he has a creative gene in his body, he is the driving force behind our renovating and the constant improving of our home and garden.  He is also the most supportive husb a gal could ask for.

When we’re not decorating or gardening, we like to take Albs out and throw the ball for him until he flings himself on the ground, exhausted.  We like to spend time in our village, Farsley, either at friends houses, at the pub or in Sunny Bank Mills where we love a new exhibition opening or their monthly ‘Trouble at Mill’ pop up theatre and music gigs.