Masters of Creative Alchemy
'forging new concepts in the world of up-cycling'
Bat-Fish Studio was created by me, Tracy Yerrell in 2014.
My mother had been a fashion designer in London when she was young. I had grown up around patterns, dressmaking supplies but most of all fabrics. I love fabrics, different textiles, natural & man made fibers, woven, blended, printed, dyed and loomed, I love it all. Textiles invoke a passion in me that is hard to explain, so it was with a heavy heart when I realized how much damage is being done to the planet through cast off fabrics. So after a successful career as a corporate designer it became more & more important for me to make a difference when it came to the materials that are in our lives.
Repeatedly after the initial use of a garment or product the material is discarded without any thought of what else it could become. I wanted to change that, I saw beautiful textiles all around me from the upholstery industry, second hand stores, discarded clothing, boxes of cut fabrics found in basements & attics, estate sales and flea markets, all needing to be made into something useful & beautiful.
So I created Bat-Fish Studio and started a line of clothing, jewelry & accessories. I wanted to create a platform that would produce sustainable fashions using abandoned materials and transform those elements into wearable art.
As materials come to the studio they are reconstructed into completely new items altogether, altered and reworked, focusing on using waste as a resource. By incorporating a wide variety of design techniques & incorporating nontraditional materials, the textiles & other components go on to become re-imagined new pieces. Products are made from elements that have been reclaimed, restored & re-purposed, often mixing in unconventional components such as rubber inner tubes & seat belts for added effect. Also my original artwork is used to create silkscreens images that are incorporated into many of the finished pieces.
Materials are sourced from a wide variety of suppliers including second hand or thrift stores. I also take donations otherwise destined for the landfill, in the form of off cuts & fabric sample books from the upholstery industry. I source off cut textiles from local retail suppliers, theatre costumes & custom set designs, interior design houses, & private donations.
The bicycle inner tube used to create the Tube*Bella jewelry line is sourced from local bicycle stores working to restore & refurbish bikes. I utilize broken pieces of jewellery, discarded chain, off-cuts of leather, unwanted & found objects, all coming from a wide variety of sources also including private donations, second hand stores, estate & church bazaars.
To me sustainable design has become a way of life, I love creating & selling reclaimed products. I’m constantly striving to come up with new & creative ideas that use unusual materials in a original & inventive way. I try to use no new materials in the making of my products, but rather follow a new way of thinking, turning waste into something beautiful and useful for every day life.
I also teach creativity workshops: a line of classes that focus on using unconventional & re-purposed materials. Designed to be fun & user friendly, they are a great way to experience hands on creative up-cycling!
Change is not always made through "big" changes but by the small focused efforts made at a local level, day to day. Innovation & creative thinking can make a difference.