Sholto’s upbringing was an artistic one. “Growing up in London some of my earliest memories are going to see my father at the Royal College of Art where he was Professor of Ceramics. I loved those visits and remember the smell of clay dust, the firing of the kilns and the happy buzz of students working. It was exciting and fun. My father encouraged me to look at the world around with an analytical eye which sparked my interest in design. When I began my degree at Staffordshire University I was meant to join the graphic design course, but wisely the tutors made us try a couple of other areas before embarking on our chosen disciplines. I did a three week study block in textiles and it was a eureka moment – I loved every minute of it and knew I had to change direction. I have been passionate about textiles ever since.”
Sholto’s career started with fashion designer Zandra Rhodes in London before moving to New York to work for Diane von Furstenberg. Back in London Sholto became in-house designer for Liberty before going freelance. He now designs for Royal Doulton, Liberty, the Victoria and Albert Museum, COS, The Royal Collection, Lulu Guinness, Oilily and many others.
“I gain enormous satisfaction producing pattern, inspiration for which can come from a myriad of different areas – from simply sitting in my garden and drawing flowers, to the details of a Japanese Kimono at the Victoria and Albert Museum.” These influences are reflected in the kits he has designed for us and his fashion background adds a new dimension to his needlework.