After studying Chinese at Edinburgh University, Kate worked as the manager of Robert Frew Ltd, a prestigious antiquarian booksellers in London. From there, she indulged her passion for books by studying bookbinding at the London College of Printing, the City Lit and Studio Five.
She has been awarded numerous prizes at the annual DB competition including the Mansfield Medal in 2006. She has also been successful in SoB competitions and was awarded the Kate Thomson prize for best student at LCP. In 2007 she became a Licentiate of DB and in 2015 she was elected to Fellowship. Her work is represented in public and private collections around the world.
Kate regularly teaches bookbinding to all levels and ages, from the local primary school to Bath Spa University. She is also happy to take on private students at her workshop near Frome, Somerset. She welcomes all types of commission for design bindings as well as short runs, tooling, restoration.
“Design binding is all-consuming for me. I have a great energy and enthusiasm for bookbinding and teaching it. I am passionate about spreading the word and exploring ways of reaching potential new audiences. I have worked extremely hard over the last few years on honing my craft, exploring new techniques and improving my designs. I have been fortunate enough to have received many exciting commissions and to have sold all my speculative bindings. I see being elected to Fellowship as a wonderful validation but I won’t allow it to stop me continually striving to improve - there is so much still to learn.”
In 2008 she set up the Bookbinders Collective to promote contemporary fine binding.