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Meet the judges: Abigail Bomford, creative director of Camira Fabrics

15 July 2018 by Editor in Features, Home, Interiors & Auto, Sponsors, Judges & Champions

Abigail Bomford is creative director of one of the foremost West Yorkshire textile manufacturers Camira Fabrics.  She was also one of the judges of this year’s TexSelect Awards. We speak to her about creativity and working for Camira, a company that prides itself on making fabrics for spaces and places, from offices to schools, trains to buses, and shops to hospitals.

In her role as creative director not only does Abigail provide the broad strategic vision for Camira’s global brand building, innovation and product development across all markets and segments, but more specifically she heads up the product design, technical development and marketing teams, steering product development and launch strategy, directing brand and product marketing, and managing a wide remit of customer touchpoints from on-line to global showrooms and events. Talking to Abi leaves us in no doubt that she is loving the challenge!

Abigail Bomford judging at TexSelect London Preview, 3 July 2018 …

Q. Can you explain the parameters of your role at Camira?

I am responsible for the broad areas of product and marketing that come with my overall remit of the creative strategy of the business across our market segments and geographies. So, I’m responsible for innovation in its broadest sense relating to our products and services, product design, development and product management, brand marketing and strategy, and our key marketing touchpoints whether digital (such as our website) or physical such as showrooms, exhibitions and branded interiors.

Q. Any new interesting projects that you are working on at the moment that you would like to share? 

Well, there’s always something new in the pipeline. At the moment this includes client specific projects in both the commercial office and the transport markets (sorry, yes they are confidential at this stage!). We’ve got five people in our innovation team, all focussed on looking 5-10 years out, looking at what could be.  This is where I see Camira working with a global network of influencers.

We’re also continuing to innovate in our wool-bast fibre fabrics, and to develop technical performance products and real innovation across product and process that could revolutionise our capabilities for our two main market sectors.

Q. What’s a typical day like for you?

As I am involved in so many aspects of the company’s creative and development strategies, no two days are alike. There are often days of back-to-back meetings and conference calls covering both projects and strategy – and I travel extensively for client meetings and exhibitions.  I’m also very involved with developing creative collaborations with a range of partners and collaborators.

Q. How important is it to support the next generation of designers?

Very important. I’ve always worked with young designers, it’s so important to give something back and to offer a commercial view.  I’m also greatly energised and inspired by their raw talent. I really enjoy nurturing British-trained designers to unlock their talent and potential, and we’re very much involved in student initiatives, such as placement schemes, academic links, talks and seminars, all of which are geared towards creating excitement about careers in design and manufacturing, and developing the stars of the future.

The judging panel deliberates…

Q. What do you look for when you’re judging a design award?

First of all, I feel it is critical to address the brief, but beyond that, I’m looking for originality in design thinking and a flair for using form, colour, pattern and texture.

Q. Finally, how – and where – do you find creative inspiration for your own work?

Anywhere and everywhere – walking my dogs, enjoying my home and family life, Instagram, design resources, travel and talking!

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TexSelect is a registered charity, entirely funded by the generous sponsorship of industry, by British charitable foundations, and by individuals connected to the industry. All believe wholeheartedly in supporting the next generation of textile design talent and in encouraging innovation and excellence.

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