Susie Taylor was born 1967 in Fort Collins, CO and was raised in Castle Rock, just south of Denver. She is the sixth of six children from a hardworking, industrious family. Her father was a zoology major and her mother trained and worked as a nurse. The family owned a biological supply business, a soils testing business and then eventually a wood shop. She worked alongside her family building, repairing and constructing things. Her mother often sewed and repaired clothing which began her formative interest in cloth and pattern which was enhanced by trips to the fabric store. In 1972, her family hosted a Japanese gentleman to live with them for a short while, through a cultural exchange program. This exotic visitor taught her to fold simple origami shapes which made a lasting impression on her. Throughout her childhood, she was attracted to art and sports.
She attended Colorado State University briefly and Fort Lewis College, where she took many art classes. It was in Durango that she first saw someone weaving on a floor loom. It was one of the most interesting things she had ever seen and decided that she would study weaving and textile design. in 1988, she transferred to Kansas City Art Institute where she majored in Fiber, with an emphasis in weaving. During this time, she had a part time job in the DesignTex showroom. This was an opportunity to look closely at industrially produced textiles for commercial use. She began to mimic the jacquard structures on her 8 shaft loom including double and triple weave pickup. After receiving her BFA, Fiber in 1991 she attended UCLA to pursue her MFA, Design. She continued her interest in complex structures and produced a series of weavings that incorporated pockets that were made from a double weave technique.
After graduating in 1994 she worked in the textile industry at various mills and design firms for 11 years. She thrived in the mill environment, designing with jacquard software and watching cloth weave at lightning speed on industrial looms. She was eager to learn all she could about the production of jacquard fabrics.
After her second child was born she left the industry and became interested in hand weaving and origami again. She pursued and was granted the Certificate of Excellence, through the Handweaver’s Guild of America. This was a way to re-engage with the work she was doing before industry. While weaving at the Newark Museum and looking at tessellation origami, she had the idea to incorporate the two together in a new woven form. This woven origami is her current focus and she is exploring new ways to push the limits of what can be woven on a hand loom.