Wandering Thoughts

Public Footpath

Wandering Thoughts

Wandering Thoughts

A Welcome

Hi there! 'Wandering Thoughts' is my newest addition to the website; a quiet place where I’ll be sharing a little bit of background, chitter chatter and general day dreaming....

When I started the brand I was doing a lot of outdoor walking. Now I live in the city, I don’t do so much but only when time allows me to get out to the countryside.

One of my favourite things about outdoor walks is that you can set out with a full head of thoughts and come back feeling like you’ve processed them. With barely any modern world chaos to distract and so much natural beauty to soothe, it’s one of the rare times when I can switch off and properly ponder.

Whilst I am not walking outdoors so much, writing is another way for me to process things. As a maker used to visual expression, it’s also something that challenges me, so I am going to try to post a Wandering Thought here each month.

You can receive early access to my monthly Wandering Thought if you’re signed up to our mailer. If not, click here! I’d love to keep you in the loop :-)

Laura x

Why Public Footpath?

by Laura Roberts - October 24th, 2022

How I came to choose this as the name for the brand is something I often get asked, so I wanted to put into words. I started the brand when I moved to the Somerset countryside in 2020. I began walking A LOT. Going on adventures, discovering all the beautiful footpaths leading to ancient hill forts, woodlands and stone circles - paths that had been trampled on for centuries.

They really helped me gain perspective through those weird lockdowns we went through, and walking in the footsteps of millennia’s worth of stories kept me feeling grounded.

Alongside this, and like many people, I had lost my full time work, so now had way more time to sew for myself. I had a stash of fabrics to use that I’d collected over the years; second-hand treasures I’d found all over the place and dead stock of companies I’d worked for that was literally going in the bin! (before I saved it)

I started making garments that I could wear on my walks (Pootle Pullovers, Gilly Vests, Picnic Jackets etc.) - functional pieces that felt more fun than my traditional outdoor clothing, full of their own stories from the fabrics they were made with.

With sewing and walking taking up almost every waking minute, I began to draw lines between the two. I learnt about the Ramblers ‘Know your rights of way’ campaign, where thousands of miles of forgotten footpaths are being reclaimed. This mirrored all the discarded fabrics I’d sourced; displaced, waiting to be revived and cherished.

My outdoor journeys were always sign posted; arrows and the little public footpath man dotted around, offering up a new direction.

When I decided to take a leap from sewing for myself to sharing it with others, ultimately it was the only name that stuck. I loved how ‘Public Footpath’ sounds industrial whilst simultaneously transporting you in to nature. There's something quite human in that.

It's the natural world's circular systems that inspire the way Public Footpath works - creating new life with discarded materials and leaving nothing to be forgotten as waste. Public Footpaths paved the way, and so it always felt like the right thing to name the new creative journey I’d begun.