Jan was always involved in drawing and painting from a very early age. She attended Norwich Art School in 1958 to do an Intermediate qualification in Painting and Sculpture. Following a break to bring up her two sons, Jan returned to Walthamstow Art School (now East London University) in 1970 and gained a three year qualification in Fashion/Textiles. After graduating, Jan launched her own label in Fashion Knitwear – Jan Horrox Knitwear - which sold internationally for over 20 years. The company regularly exhibited at Fashion Week in London and the New York Pret and many other UK shows.
Jan opened her own shop in Belsize Park; North London called 'Softwear'. This was a magical emporium selling all things knitted and for knitting – many wonderful yarns, patterns, garments, sculptures and hangings.
Jan has also worked with advertising, film and TV costumes, the highlight of which was designing the knitwear for Ewan McGregor in 'Trainspotting'. There was also much varied freelance work for other fashion designers.
Jan taught final year fashion students at Somerset College of Art for several years in the early 1980’s.
In 2003 Jan decided that it was time for a change – by then being rather jaded by the fashion scene. It was at this time that cloth dolls were introduced to the UK at the ‘Knitting and Stitching’ shows at Alexandra Palace of that year.
Cloth doll making is an enormously popular craft in the USA as we all now know. The magic rubbed off and Jan launched into a new career – designing original cloth dolls. It soon became apparent that it was very difficult to find all the tools and fabrics recommended for this craft by the American patterns and books – so Jan decided to set up a new business 'Jan Horrox Cloth Dolls' to bring all the supplies to the UK.
Jan is now full-time involved with cloth dolls and related textile work and produces a range of her own patterns and has sold and exhibited ‘one-off’ dolls in UK galleries.
Jan also produces a range of handprinted silks and chiffons - hangings - and textile sculptures - soon to be included on the website.
Jan now runs her business from home which is a large Victorian terraced house located on the beautiful Norfolk coast in Cromer, North Norfolk.
Jan practice will soon be expanded into a shop premises in Cromer which will be a much needed Print and Dye area. Jan will be holding workshops here later in 2011.
Jan has been married to Iain for 40 years and has 2 sons and 4 grandchildren.