Oksana learnt to knit and embroider from an early age, and coming from a Ukrainian and English background is very proud of her heritage.
In the mid 1970’s she attended Mansfield College of Art where she undertook a Foundation Course in Art and Design. She developed an interest in textile design, with an emphasis on knitwear.
She then undertook a BA degree at Trent Polytechnic (now Nottingham Trent University) where she developed her love of colour and pattern and sought to develop her range of bespoke ladies knitwear.
Following the formation of a local Craft and Design group “Craftworks”, she became Chairman of the group who organised various exhibitions at The Playhouse in Nottingham and associated venues.
During this time, she regularly attended selected Designer fairs up and down the country, and her work has gone to customers in the USA, Italy and Spain. She also supplied several local boutiques and outlets including a gallery in Silverdale, Lancashire and Rufford Craft Centre with her garments, but became disenchanted with the emergence of “craft” fairs where the standard of workmanship began to deteriorate.
She returned to study and graduated with an LL.B (Hons) in 1996 and entered the legal profession, where she was employed as a Legal Accountant. She maintained her love of textiles and continued to design and produce garments for her personal use and close friends.
During this period, she undertook a course in “Hooked” rugs at Rufford and saw this as a way of relaxing from the pressures of the legal profession. In 2015 having no dependents or commitments, she returned to Nottingham Trent University to undertake an MA in Textile Design, where she wished to explore and research the history of Ukrainian embroidery, its colours and symbolism and how she could apply these to contemporary textiles
During this time she was able to work on both domestic and industrial knitting machines and also venture into the print and weave studios. Having always worked in natural fibres and now being passionate about recycling and sustainability coupled with the revival of old crafts, she sought to resurrect her love of “hooked” rugs.
Colour and pattern are the dominant features of her work, and her rugs are purchased not only to be used functionally, but as wall hangings and works of art. Following completion of her Master’s degree, she collaborated with a fine artist and glass maker and presented an exhibition at the Society of Artists in Nottingham in November 2017.
Her work can be seen at various selected Designer Makers’ fairs in the country and she is currently in the process of arranging to organise and undertake workshops in the art of “rag rugging”