about me

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Hi. tractorgirl  is me! And I’m Julie.

I’m big on colour and texture, and pattern is my special love.

I like the feel of fabric in my hands, I love how its colours and patterns make my eyes dance. Brocades, linens, velvets and prints from mid-century through to 70s and beyond – they’re beautiful, and my personal mission is to get them out on people’s couches and onto bodies where they belong.

Everything you see in this shop is designed and handmade by me, in my little solar-powered weatherboard cottage in rural Australia.


So who am I?

I love all things art, design and craft. I dislike things that are made poorly, and don’t work as they should or could. Sometimes I can be dreadfully messy, but when it counts (like when I’m making things) I am fastidious.

My family history is littered with other artists, makers, and designers. My mum was a fabulous seamstress, and when I was little, she taught me to knit, crochet, and sew. Making is a core part of my life, and I’m a big daydreamer. I’m a bower-bird, so anything and everything is a possible source of inspiration. I work across several mediums; I’m always inspired by the beauty in the everyday, and especially in the forms and the way of nature. I am sometimes frustrated, but never bored.  Jewellery and silversmithing was my thing at university for several years, and I received my PhD in Fine Art in 2001.


Some random facts about me.

  • My partner and I and our three kids are building a rammed earth (pise) house that will be entirely off the grid – self sufficient for water and power. Hopefully we’ll be in it by the end of  **** (I’m not saying when ‘cos I don’t want to jinx it)
  • I still love colouring in, and sometimes pinch the kids’ colouring books – it’s very soothing, and I love using tone to make the shapes pop. I like to stay within the lines, but use unexpected colours. (Yep, that’s part of my personal philosophy too.)
  • I trekked up to Base Camp Everest in 1989. During that trip, I suffered the worst hangover of my entire life. (Note: Don’t drink Nepali vodka and expect to go trekking at altitude the next day.)
  • I’ve travelled around the world a fair bit (north Africa, Asia, western Europe), but I’m ashamed to admit I have seen very little of Australia. I intend to remedy that in the next few years, and strike north.
  • When I don’t have to think up something savoury yet nutritious for the family day after day, I enjoy cooking. My partner knows this and often buys me cookbooks. The best pizza we ever had was in Pisa – a smattering of grilled eggplant and garlic on a perfectly light crust. We’ve been trying to replicate it ever since. We’re close.
  • My fabric stash is packed in shelving about 2.5 metres long and about 1.5 metres high. I think know I need more fabric.
  • I live on a farm outside Wagga Wagga, and sometimes I drive a tractor.

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