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Saturday, June 7, 2008

Getting to know you - Liz

This was supposed to be posted last Saturday - I had prepared it before we went to Denmark and everything. But then my Saturday got sort of hijacked...

I got to know Liz a wee while ago after she left some nice comments on the blog. She is very nice! And she makes all kinds of things, which really inspires me. Oh and, she make some awesome looking cakes too! (see below) Enjoy!

P.S. Just so you know: my favourite way of finding new people to interview is through the comments that all you nice people leave for me. You are amazing! Also, if (or someone you know) would like to be interviewed, please let me know! It's not grandiose or showing of, it's sharing. And that's a good thing!

Your name
Liz :: blog ::

Where in the world are you?
West London, UK

Briefly describe yourself and what you make
I sew, knit, crochet. I do a bit of felting with an embellisher machine. I have just learned how to make jewellery using beads and head pins. I like adding polymer clay faces to things, but I haven’t quite mastered the art of polymer clay. I also can’t rubber stamp for some reason, although I keep trying. And I have an embroidery machine which I love (but keep that a secret in case I get in trouble with the crafting police).

At the moment I make dolls. But I used to make bags, and probably will again, and before that I made most of my own clothes including bras and swim suits. Never managed shoes, though. And I make jewellery and make up bags as birthday presents.

Who or what inspires you?
The internet. I see something that someone has made and I want to make one too. At the moment I am obsessed with what is known as primitive art, although I haven’t exactly pinned down what defines it. I only know about these things because I spend far too much time on the internet.

When / how did you learn?
My mum tried to teach me to knit, but failed because as I am left handed she tried to teach me left handed. She couldn’t do it, being right handed. I eventually taught myself from a book, and now knit awkwardly the right handed way. I was about 9 or 10, I think. My mum also taught me how to use a sewing machine when I was about 11 or 12, and I sewed lots of clothes for myself all through my teens. Anything else I learned from a book, except the jewellery making which I learned from a workshop last week!

Why do you 'bother' to make things by hand?
I just like to make things. Actually it’s bordering on obsession.

Fondest craft-related memory?
This is a recent one, and it’s not all that fond, but I wanted to tell it somewhere. I have been using a sewing machine since I was 11 (40 years) and managed never to sew through my finger. Until last week!

Can you reveal a little about your creative process?
I often start with a finished product in mind, usually something that someone else has made. But as I am going along different things occur to me to try and often the end product bears (bares?) very little resemblance to the idea I started with. I also like starting with kits. That gives me a good idea of the process and then I can go off and make something different using those ideas.

How do you deal with crafty mistakes?
Put them in the bin, usually, I don’t have much patience with things gone wrong. I have a feeling that’s against the law, though J

Favourite book(s) or craftbook(s)?
Too many to list. My current favourites are the ”Tilda” books, Sew pretty Homestyle, and crafting Christmas Gifts. But next week it will be something else. I have a good collection of 70s craft books gleaned from charity shops.

Do you have a designated craft space? What does it mean to you?
My designated craft space is the dining room table. So everyone has to eat their meals balancing their plates on their knees. The last time the table was clear enough to eat at was Christmas dinner.

Do you use a sketchbook or journal?
No. I think in words. I write lots of things down. Lists, shopping lists, things I’d like to make, things I need to buy, what happened yesterday, phone numbers, and sometimes I draw a diagram amongst the words. I just bought a book on doodling, so maybe I’ll include doodles.

Is your craft a business as well? Any advice on running a crafty business?
No it’s not. I do need an outlet for the things I make though. The cupboards are getting full . I really would like to make some sort of business out of my craft, but I worry a) that it’s not good enough, b) that I would stop enjoying it if I was doing it for money. I’m toying with the idea of etsy at the moment.

What impact (if any) has the internet had on your craft?
Huge, great inspiration, fantastically easy to get hold of supplies. I love ebay!

Do you make art or craft? Is there a difference?
Definitely not art. Maybe craft, I’m not sure. I’m a Craftster type of person.

If you could make any project without limits to cost, materials or even skill, what would it be?
Oh I couldn’t possibly limit myself to 1 project. I would like to make up all the sewing, knitting and crochet patterns I have, make some projects from the Tilda book, sew myself a new wardrobe of clothes.

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