Shirley Mclauchlan profile picture

Job title:

Lecturer, Design and ESALA


Hunter Building, P7a


Shirley Mclauchlan MA (St Martins)

Shirley Mclauchlan studied Textiles at The Glasgow School of Art and St Martins London. She was a partner in the successful print studio Kim Clark Design in London designing collections and selling prints internationally for over twelve years.

On return to Scotland in 1997 she set up her own practice designing 'Modern Family Heirlooms' working with a range of clients.

Her design philosophy is embedded in sustainability. She strives to work as a commercial, sustainable designer making pieces that are valued and 'tell a story'.

She was an ambassador for ZWS (Zero Waste Scotland) working to engage education and design within the circular economy from craft to designer. Her research at ECA has resulted in presenting several academic papers and facilitating workshops/exhibitions questioning the role of design and the environment. Plate 2015 Circular Transitions 2016 and Plate 2017.

Recently her film was screened at the V&A Dundee as part of Fashion revolution week.


Part-time lecturer at Edinburgh College of Art since 1999, working with first year to Master students within the Textiles department. My research regards sustainable design is embedded into my teaching. Constantly challenging the role of commercial design and sustainability.

Lecturer within the School of Landscape and Architecture since 2014. Working with the Art & Design team developing drawing and design thinking/process.


Area of research for the past 20 years has been focused around sustainability. Exploring through theory and practice the question of how to work as a commercial textile designer in a sustainable manner.

I have over the years facilitated many workshops exploring hand stitching and discussion. I enjoy working with a wide variety of ages and skills. I like to encourage the audience to simply try with the importance on enjoyment. The mending and repair aspect is a secondary aspect of the workshop.


I am enjoying the added bonus stitching has with regards to good mental health:

Related projects

Edinburgh Climate Festival 2019: Personalised mending workshops held in The Meadows Edinburgh during the Climate change festival on the 6th July 2019.

During Fashion Revolution week April 2019 I ran a public engagement workshop highlighting the effect fast fashion has on communities and the environment. During the workshops discussions were had and mending techniques were explored as possible alternatives to the buying and throwing away of fashion garments.

Public paid event at the V&A Dundee in which my film was shown and I was an invited panellist.

Academic research papers for PLATE, 2015, 2017, 2019

Future research workshops: 

  • #100daysprojectscotland2019 work will be exhibited in Edinburgh in October 2019
  • Designing for and with garment repair: an exploration of future possibilities. Durrani, Marium(a), Niinimäki, Kirsi(a), McLauchlan, Shirley(b) a) Aalto University, Espoo, Finland) Edinburgh College of Art, Edinburgh, United Kingdom. Accepted September 2019. | Find out more >
  • Workshop Research visit: October 2019: Sustainable Fashion Research Project at Donghua University, Shanghai.

Current PhD students

PhD Supervision Topics

  • Sustainable design

Related programmes