Artist gives kiss of life to old furniture

Vikki Sherouse of The Kennels, Higher Lane, Scorton, with some of her creations

Vikki Sherouse of The Kennels, Higher Lane, Scorton, with some of her creations

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A local artist has proved she can see the wood for the trees with her range of revamped home furnishings and mirrors.

Vikki Sherouse’s new business, Veelou, uses found and recycled materials to create contemporary pieces for the home.

Vikki, 30, works from a converted potting shed in ger mum Gina’s back garden in Higher Lane, Scorton.

She transforms old mirrors using twigs, leaves, earth, stones and any other organic materials she finds on her mum’s three acres of land.

Before she starts work she ensures there are no insects hiding in the twigs, straw and leaves she has collected, sieving the soil through an old toast grill.

She also sources used furniture from car boot sales and second hand shops, which she repairs and ‘upcycles’ before selling them to customers after something different.

Dints and scratches may be enhanced, or colours and surface patterns may give a hint or a nod the era in which it was originally created.

Her pieces include telephone tables, dressers and drawers.

Vikki, a former foundation arts student at the University of Central Lancashire who went on to study writing and community arts, said she had been overwhelmed by the response she received at recent fairs.

“I’ve sold a few items and received a few commissions too,” she said.

Vikki, from Garstang, who previously worked in creative arts for a major Lancashire service provider for adults who have learning disabilities, said: “I wanted to work professionally doing my own artwork and was about to turn 30 so I thought it was now or never.

“When I moved in with my boyfriend I initially fell into the Ikea trap but then I did up some furniture myself and got lots of compliments so that was the basis for the business.”

One of the first items Vikki rescued was an old 1950s rocking chair her dad was taking to the tip, which she made a new seat cover for and re-painted.

“The sustainability element is important to me, especially with the mirrors, which cannot be recycled,” she said.

“They still have a function as a mirror after I have adapted them but the idea is that they can also be appreciated as art.

“I also like the fact that there is history attached to the pieces I am creating.”

Later in the year Vikki is planning to run a series of creative workshops for would-be ‘upcyclers’.

To see examples of Vikki’s work visit www.veelou.com.