In 1957 Heather enrolled on the 2 year diploma D.P.D. course (Design Publicity and Display) at Portsmouth College of Art. This course encompassed; Colour theory, textile printing, graphic design, photography, calligraphy, 3 dimensional construction and practical display. Heather sat the British Display Society examinations, gaining a distinction throughout.

 

Heather and Rosey Lamb working on a college project - September 1958

In 1959 Heather was employed full time within the display department of a large department store which had the reputation for imaginative display. She started teaching students in the evenings in preparation for their British Display Society examinations. Heather then married Peter Lipscombe - her tutor from college! Peter had trained at the Royal College of art, and with his encouragement and help Heather continued to teach part time while also raising a young family. They moved to Harrow where Peter taught Graphic design at the Harrow College of Art. Under his leadership this course developed into the very successful Information Graphics degree. Heather taught part time at Casio College and at the College for the Distributive Trades in London. A variety of exhibition designs and freelance promotions kept the projects rolling in. 

An early Heather window display (Handleys).

A move back to Portsmouth happened in 1972. Peter commuted weekly from Harrow to Portsmouth, while Heather managed a full week creating displays for a wide range of individual and multiple traders.

In 1976 the opportunity to get back into teaching arose and Heather took a part time post back at Portsmouth Art College teaching display, she also taught and art and design to pupils from local secondary schools. A full time post followed as the part time display course was amalgamated into the full time Exhibition and Display course - students still sitting the British Display Society examinations along with their diplomas and HND.

 

As ever Heather continued to work freelance as a window dresser.

When Portsmouth University took over the art college in 1990 courses changed once again - display being dropped entirely - this gave Heather the opportunity for re-training. 

Always loving the use of colour and texture, next to being practical and hands on, Heather enrolled on a textile course run by the dynamic Julia Caprara at the London City Lit. It proved to be a most stimulating and energetic year, during which Heather also taught textiles to foundation students until finally retiring from teaching in 1992.

 

The 'Cloth & Stitch Group' was formed from Julia's textile students and for a number of years their exhibitions were held at the T.U.C building in Great Russell Street London, Deal in Kent and Chichester in West Sussex. In 2000 after their Leighton House exhibition and 8 years of exhibitions together the group disbanded.


Stitch combined with slate.

The same year Heather teamed up with ex Cloth & Stitch member Eileen Thomsett, together they exhibited their work at the Guildhall Gallery Winchester.

Heather then teamed up with ex teaching colleague Ken Briffett - a talented and imaginative wood turner.  Their 2/D and 3/D work looked like it would combine well for a joint exhibition, so they looked for a suitable venue to show their work. Highcliffe Castle on the south coast was chosen and the 'Stitch and Turn' exhibition was booked for a 2 month long show starting October 2006. 

 

Heather, Rosey and Ken Briffett setting up the Highcliffe exhibition.

 

Heather and Ken produced a massive amount of quality work during the nine months leading up to the exhibition, which was handy because the space to fill was huge! Smaller items for selling became necessary because of the pre-Christmas slot and these pieces actually enhanced the visual impact of the exhibition.


There was lots of variety and plenty of things to view, along with a running video showing Heather's progressing history of work.

A successful exhibition for both Artists and for the custodians of Highcliffe Castle who benefited from a large piece of stitch raffled during the exhibition, the proceeds going towards the ongoing restoration of this wonderful building.

 

And today Heather is still as active as ever producing new work for upcoming exhibitions and further developing her unique approach to textile art.