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Ella S.

Meet the Author

Hey there, can you introduce yourself?

Medium mollie johanson headshot credit anna johanson

I'm Mollie, often known online as Wild Olive. I love crafting, cute things and coffee. Sometimes I like crafting cute coffee. Embroidery and hand sewing are my favorites, and whenever possible, I will add a sweet little face to the things I'm making.

Tell us a bit about the book?

Stitch Love: Sweet Creatures Big & Small is all about making animals. The animals range from pets you might have in your home to critters on the forest floor to some mystical creatures (and lots more in between!) It's a combination of embroidery and sewing projects, and sometimes those two things are combined. You can stitch a favorite animal friend on a ready-made item, sew some stuffed pals, or embroider and sew a quiet book. It has a mix of projects designed to appeal to both kids and adults, and most can be completed by a beginner.

What was the inspiration behind it?

The overall style was inspired by my love of Japanese craft books. I love their pages full of embroidery and the use of linen and sweet little stitches, so that has influenced my work, and then Stitch Love. Focusing on animals was an idea that was suggested to me, and I was nervous about it at first. But once I got started, I couldn't stop..animals are just so adorable!

Which is your favourite project?

This is a really difficult question, because my answer changes. When I was writing Stitch Love, my favorite was the Precious Possum Hanging Sachet that you see on the cover. Currently I especially love the Gleeful Guinea Pig Plush. But it's only a matter of time before I decide that another project is at the top of my list!

What is your craft space like?

The short answer is: a mess. The long answer is that I tend to work all over the house depending on what I'm doing or how I'm feeling, and I leave a trail of embroidery floss behind. I'm in the midst of trying to at least have a bit of a space where I can display and better access my supplies. But I have a feeling that I'll always be crafting and making messes in the middle of everything else going on in my house!

Have you always been creative?

In one way or another, yes. My parents are both very creative and it's been encouraged at my house. Plus my grandma used to pass along her creativity in the kitchen and sewing room. Throughout my life I've done some dance and theater, helped with home decorating and flower garden design, spent time cooking and baking, and have tried many, many crafts.

When did you first start crafting?

I was probably crafting from the time I was a toddler, so remembering back that far is tricky. Plus I made loads of things as I got a little older. But I have fond memories of stitching on my grandma's kitchen towels. The stitches were just lines of running stitch with regular thread, and they were not very tidy. But Nanny used them for years and years. Stitch Love is dedicated to her.

Who are your crafty heroes?

I can't say that I have any favorites, although Aimee Ray and Amy Sinibaldi pop into my mind. I'll explore craft and stitching books from just about anyone. My crafty heroes are the friends I've connected with on Instagram. They're people who are making cute and beautiful things for themselves, their family, and online friends...just because!

Where do you find inspiration?

The world is filled with so much inspiration, and often I'll simply look around my house and neighborhood. If I have several hours to waste, er, invest, I do some specific searches online, then see what rabbit holes I end up in. I also like to look at vintage books and magazines, and Japanese craft books.

What's next for you?

Lots more crafting and writing! I'm currently working on some projects for book and magazine contributions, and a few other things that are still a secret. I'm starting to write about embroidery for, which will be a fun place to focus on the craft I love most. And from September to November I'm running my new Holiday Stitching Club. The club features some of my animal embroidery designs, English paper piecing, and projects to make as gifts and decor.

Publisher's Description

Love stitching? Love animals? Then this sweet collection of creatures big and small is perfect for you! Featuring beginner-friendly embroidery patterns from a rising star in the craft community, it features a variety of irresistibly cute critters—pets, farm animals, dinosaurs, even mythical favorites like Pegasus. There are 25 projects in all, from a hedgehog stroller quilt to a dachshund keyboard wrist rest, plus dozens of motifs.