Commissions and Products Specialist Role October 02, 2018 13:13

Application Deadline: Thursday 25th October at 4pm

  • Location: Battersea, London
  • Salary: £25,000 pro rata (3 days per week)

Fine Cell Work is an innovative, growing charity that trains and pays prisoners to do professional tapestry and quilting and sells their products. The work makes a great difference to the rehabilitation prospects of offenders. The goods made are of a very high quality and the prisoners receive a third of sales proceeds. The work gives them the opportunity to occupy the long hours spent in their cells constructively and they stitch voluntarily for an average of 20-40 hours a week when “behind the door”. This skilled and therapeutic work enables prisoners to earn and save a nest-egg for themselves and their families, so they can leave prison with hope and purpose and the chance of making a fresh start.

The Commissions and Products Specialist will be responsible for providing the technical expertise to support commissions and allow Fine Cell Work to build its income from this source, providing project management of large commissions and working with the Commission and Design Manager and the Production team to ensure timely delivery of a high quality finished item according to client specifications.

The role will also include advising the Design Committee on stitch techniques to facilitate the development of new products with a lower cost of sales and for products for which to extend existing ranges.  


  • Support commissions by providing artistic interpretation, specialist advice and expertise including charting.
  • Project-manage large and/or technically challenging commissions including brief development, budgets and schedule and, if required, final construction of the piece ensuring that all aspects of the arrangements for the commission are discussed and agreed with colleagues prior to being finalised.
  • Communicate final brief to the Commission and Design Manager and the production team to ensure that each is clear of their responsibility and deadlines.
  • Work with the Commission and Design Manager to identify suitable outworkers on elements of the commissions process including design/artworking, charting, screen printing that, because of limited time available or lack of technical equipment, cannot be done in-house.
  • Manage a small team of specialist volunteers working on commissions and sampling new designs in the hub. Liaise with volunteers teaching in cell groups and prisons when required regarding commissions.
  • Devise processes to devolve technical production processes to ex-prisoners and manage.
  • With the Executive Director, the Commissions and Design Manager and the production team, advise on stitch techniques, technical make-up, costs and materials used to facilitate new products with a lower cost of sales.
  • As a member of the Design Committee support the development of new products to fit into new and existing ranges to match marketing criteria, prisoner skill levels and support the future expansion plans of the charity.
  • For product development, produce mock ups of new products in Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop.

 Knowledge, Skills and Experience:


  • A high level of needlecraft/textile design qualifications and experience.
  • Knowledge of Adobe suite.
  • Project management skills. 
  • Knowledge of product and production costing techniques.
  • Sensitivity and awareness of colour.
  • Experience of working with volunteers.
  • Good level of communication.


  • Product design and development training and skills.
  • Experience with machine embroidery.

You will need to be able to go through an enhanced DBS check.

How to apply

Please send your CV and a brief covering letter to using the reference ‘Commissions and Products Specialist ’ explaining why you think you would be suitable for the role and what you would gain from it. Please note that applications submitted without a covering letter will not be considered.