Lots of colour, which is never a bad thing. Also, Megan is really nice, so you should definitely check out her little corner of the interwebs. Yes! Thank you, Megan! :-)
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Where in the world are you?
Western Australia, out in the Wheatbelt (rural) area, three hours from the nearest city.
Briefly describe yourself and what you make
I am an early childhood teacher who lives with her cat and occasionally her other half who works away on the mines. I don’t really have a ’thing’ I make, I am busy exploring the craft world and trying out all sorts of things. Current projects on the go are creating an outdoor table from a old pine door, crocheting a scarf and a granny square rug, painting a dinosaur height chart that I cut out of mdf with the help of my other half, little sewing projects, and making creative stuff I can use at school with my kids. Other projects that are on my list to try are making some curtains and learning how to use the second hand silk screens I purchased recently.
Who or what inspires you?
Memories of my childhood and all the wonderful clothes my Mum used to make for me and my sister. Hours spent in the craft room raiding the craft cupboard for scrap material to make clothes for our barbie dolls. Pouring out the buttons in Mum’s button collection and looking at them all.
These days it is mostly blogland that inspires me. I don’t really have any crafty friends other than those I have ’met’ through blogging. There are some very creative and talented people out there and looking at all the things they are making gets me in the mood to create.
When / how did you learn?
Constantly and mostly through trial and error. Mum taught me the basics of sewing when I was young. At highschool I did Home Economics and learnt lots of sewing skills (which I have mostly forgotten). Since then it’s mostly been fumbling through on my own, trying things out, looking online for tutorials on the ever helpful youtube or people’s blogs. At the beginning of 2010 Mum taught me how to crochet on request and since learning the basics I have been teaching myself to read patterns and translate between american and english crochet terms.
Why do you 'bother' to make things by hand?
I don’t think it is a ’bother’, I actually really enjoy creating. Sometimes it’s because I see something I like but most definitely cannot afford, sometimes I want to make something that I can find anywhere to buy, sometimes it’s just for the pleasure of making and finishing something that I did all by myself – that’s a lovely feeling of success to have.
What is your craft ”philosophy”?
It would be nice if I had one... is there where we preach all those wonderful ideologies of ’Finish one project before starting another.’ And ’Don’t buy more than you need.’ Hmm... better start listening to my own preaching I think!
Fondest craft-related memory?
To be honest I think it would be learning how to crochet with my Mum teaching me. I don’t have the closest of relationships with her and I think my request to her to help me meant a lot to her. We have a bit more to talk about now and she has gotten back into crochet and knitting as well after quite a few years off.
Another one was just this year when I taught my class of 20 four year olds how to stitch and we made a simple lavender cushion out of felt and did a running stitch love heart on the front. They did such a great job, taking lots of care with their work and I was so very proud of their efforts.
Have you always made ’stuff’?
On and off, yes. I think I was the most creative as a child, my sister and I did so much creative stuff when we were young and it is only now that I look back and think how lucky we were to have such a crafty mum.
Can you reveal a little about your creative process?
If I had any yes. My method tends to be a bit of fly by the seat of my pants and when that doesn’t work, just wing it.
My brain says ”ooh pretty” and I go out and buy some stuff to make it with and then I seem to either not have the time, not have the skill or find something else I want to make that takes over. Hence a lot of crafty supplies and a lot of unfinished WIPs.
How do you deal with crafty mistakes?
One of three ways.
1. Have a tanty, foot stomping, huffing and swearing at craft materials included.
2. Undo it all and start again.
3. Ignore it and hope for the best.
Favourite book(s) or craftbook(s)?
My first ever craft book I bought probably about 5 years ago and didn’t use it until about 2 years ago. I did pick up the Reader’s Digest Guide to Needlecraft for $8 from a secondhand bookshop and have already made a fair bit of use of that in the crochet section.
I tend to go with online for ideas, limited space in my house means books tend to be reserved for fiction. I’m very much a Fantasy girl, although very much not a vampire girl. Fairies and witches and dash of romance!
Do you have a designated craft space? What does it mean to you?
I would love to have a designated craft space – my house is pretty tiny and I have LOTS of stuff so it is all a bit cramped in here. My spare room is taken up by about ½ school stuff, 1/3 craft stuff and the rest is clothes and lots and lots of books.
Do you use a sketchbook or journal?
No, that would be organised... instead I use scraps of paper and then lose them and find them in the strangest places. I don’t really draw my ideas that much but I do have an old sketch book of ideas from when I was younger that I should dig out and continue on with.
Why is crafting good for you?
I can’t snack while I craft – big bonus!
Is your art/ craft a business as well? Any advice on running an arty/ crafty business?
No, although I would love to start a shop on etsy, it will just involve getting my act together and deciding on what I want to make for it.
What impact (if any) has the internet had on your craft?
I love seeing other people’s ideas and not having any crafty friends that was a bit of a problem before I began blogging. It really is an instant connection to hundreds (or thousands if your blog is super popular) of other like minded people who you can ask questions of and just stay inspired by. Plus, all the great patterns wonderful generous people put online for people like me who are not the most inventive in the creativity department as of yet makes it easy to try out lots of fun new things.
Do you make art or craft? Is there a difference?
Definitely craft. I think art is done by people who are very good at something and go through the whole creative process of planning, testing, adjusting, creating etc. Definitely not beginners who dabble in everything with no real plan, or follow patterns created by others.
If you could make any project without limits to cost, materials or even skill, what would it be?
I would absolutely love to make a jarrah rocking chair. A beautiful one with carvings on it that could be handed down over the centuries to my descendants (when I start having them) for each generation to be rocked in as a baby and read books to as a child. This is something I have no hope of achieving myself. But it’s a nice dream! So I’ve kindly informed my other half that this is his job to make me one. I think he could do it with a bit of time on his hands.
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