Simoni Papaefstathiou, is a modern weaver from Cyprus. She weaves in her loom unique fabrics and then Simoni transforms them into one of a kind accessories for her brand " Simoni Textile Designs".
What is your background and where did you study?
I am from Nicosia Cyprus. I studied BA Textiles: Weave Knit and Mixed Media at Middlsex University in London.
How did you first become interested in design textile and weaving?
I always found interesting, combining colors and textures together. After taking a foundation course in Art and Design, I was introduced to textiles and I found it fascinating to be able to create my own fabric from scratch.
You now live and work in Nicosia? What made you decide to set up your studio in Nicosia?
I live and work in Nicosia. After I graduated from University in 2009, I moved back to Cyprus and I decided to set up my own studio, because I wanted to create my own brand of hand-woven accessories. In 2010 I created my brand 'Simoni Textile Designs' and launched my first collection of hand-woven fashion accessories.
Where do you go when looking for inspiration for new projects?
I look for inspiration everywhere around me. It could be nature, the sky or a fashion era that I like. I love observing everything. I love colours and I find it exciting when I start a new project, to create my own colour palette based on an object or a theme. I then use those colours in my weaving. The fabric is like a blank canvas, and as I weave I create a one of a kind piece which then becomes an accessory.
What is the most challenging part of weaving?
The most challenging part of weaving is setting up the loom. I have to wind the yarn on the loom, thread it and then tie it on the machine. The whole process takes a few days.
What kind of thinks do you design? What’s favorite piece?
I design fashion accessories such as handbags, shawls earrings, rings and brooches, and recently I started making home accessories as well such as cushions, coasters and wall hangings. My favorite piece is a gold hand-woven pouch with textures from my collection 'Fairy tales do exist'.
What would you most like to make that you haven't so far?
For example a collection of tweed coats with beautiful textured and woolen skirts.
And finally do you have any exciting plans for the future?
At the moment I am preparing my new collection which will be out in September. I would like to continue creating beautiful and unique pieces and expand my brand abroad. I am hoping that more people will learn about my brand and love it as much as I do.
words Sonia Farasopoulou
photos By Simoni Textile Designs archive