Louise White

Please tell me a little about yourself

My name is Louise, I am 44 years old and I have Parkinson’s Disease. I was diagnosed 5 years ago, it was a deeply dark and distressing time.

In the darkness I kept thinking about hares for some reason and one day when I was looking on ebay for Hare related items I came across a needle felting kit.

I ordered it and was slightly bemused when I opened the box and all there was, was a ball of unprocessed wool and 2 needles. I followed the instructions and my life changed forever.

I can without any shadow of a doubt, confidently say that this accessible, forgiving and beautiful craft has been my saviour. I love the organic nature of working with the wool, I love the smell, the texture, the pliability and the versatility. I love that when I am working I forget I have PD and I just get lost in this magical world. The little felts that come out are never what I intended, they all have their own personalities and that is my favourite thing.

This craft has been my gift from Parkinson’s because without being diagnosed, I would have just carried on with life and never have discovered my talent for it. Parkinson’s and I have compromised.

I have raised £1500 selling my work for Parkinson’s UK and am hoping at some point to set up workshops for people with serious illness to get together, explore their creativity and share their stories.

I firmly believe that crafting should be available for all, painting and drawings are often difficult for people because they lack imagination but with a craft you have a pattern and therefore a process and a ritual to go through. There is always room for error with needle felting it is forgiving.