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Life At Chelsea: Shambhavi Choudhary - MA Textile Design


Written by
Gavin Freeborn
Published date
24 October 2018

As part of our Life at Chelsea series we caught up with  MA Textile Design student Shambhavi Choudhary to see how her learning experience at Chelsea shaped her practice.

“The method of marrying print and weave and experimenting with different ways of achieving this was the main element of the project that evolved during my time on MA Textile Design.

An image of the artist painting on fabric.

“For the Summer Show I worked on three tapestries that were hand made from painting the warp to weaving it. They are a tribute to the artisans of Kashmir.

“My biggest influence during my time at Chelsea has been the craft of tapestry weaving especially in Kashmir.

The artist painting coloured details on yellow fabric.

“Nature itself has always been my biggest inspiration. For my piece ‘Painting a Tapestry’ the focus was on culture, crafts and the artisans of Kashmir. The designs, materials and colours have all been picked up from indigenous elements such as the botanical gardens and paper mâché crafts.

A weave machine weaving colourful patterned fabrics

The issue of cultural appropriation of craft plays an instrumental role in my project. My aim was to re-appropriate and bring the imagery back to Kashmir and to do so in an original and contemporary way.

Fabric weaving floral patterns.

“Chelsea’s workshops, studio and gallery environment have all contributed to my work as an independent textile designer, motivated by research and current developments in the textile industry. The tutorials I’ve had provided insightful advice and helped me proceed forward in creative ways.

“The fact that Chelsea places an emphasis on sustainable practices makes me proud to be a Chelsea student.

Fabric weaving boat patterns.

“What I’ve enjoyed most about living in London is meeting people from all over the world and learning a bit about their culture and craft. Being able to visit galleries and exhibitions for inspiration is great advantage.

Fabric weaving floral and teapot patterns.

“My ambitions following graduation is to work at a design house that values handmade design.

“MA Textile Design is very fulfilling and makes you more independent as you have to create a project from scratch and make a finished product. It teaches you to support your arguments with the help of research and to incorporate sustainability in your work as a designer.

“My Chelsea in three words? Empowering, independent and informative.”

See more of Shambhavi’s work on her website.

Find out more about  MA Textile Design

Explore more work from our graduating students, visit