What are your hobbies?
I love cooking - mostly I love feeding friends and family. Savoury dishes, baking for me is almost always savoury too. I love the endless task of sorting out my flat. It's a wonderfully bright and light space and benefits from not being cluttered - an on-going challenge for me. I live on the coast and have a funny little beach hut down on the shingle - it truly is a wonderful place to contemplate and relax - vast expanses of sky over your head - most cathartic.
What are your favorite crafts and what's your craft space like?
I think that sewing probably wins... although as I do quite a lot of sitting on public transport, two crochet and knitting are very close seconds! I have the most wonderful studio in the roof of my apartment - light floods in from the east and the west, there's plenty of shelving and a large old kitchen table. Trouble is, its just FULL of stuff. I try to regularly cull the bags and boxes of samples and materials. I often find myself, by the end of the day, working in a tiny clear space on my table - I aim to clear this table every evening to make it more inviting and sane looking for the morning.
What do you craft along to?
I go through phases - last year I did a lot of (not) watching old movies - they played in the background and I looked up now and again, but the movies were those I've seen so often, their familiarity proved a comforting background which I could zone into or ignore depending on the complexity of the task in hand. I have taken that a bit further and am currently listening to radio plays and documentaries on BBC Radio 4 and 4 Extra...
What was the first project you ever made?
I can't really - we learned to sew and knit at a very young age indeed - lots of 'make-do-and-mending' went on. My mother and Grandmother stitched and knitted our clothes, whilst we made smaller versions for teddy bears and dolls! I still have these rather sweet garments in a small old suitcase - small moss stitch waistcoats with tiny buttons, smocked dresses and tartan trousers.
What are your favorite items to make?
I like making bags - mostly because I love things to have a purpose beyond how they look. Bags can vary from small drawstring velvet pouches to store jewellery, to utilitarian canvas tote bags for carrying groceries and books. And, of course, storage equals order!
Which other craft blogs do you love to read?
I rely rather heavily on recommendations from others - I tend to dip in and out of an eclectic mix, grazing for inspiration and then, sometimes, ignoring referencing altogether as I start getting into a project or book for fear of feeling that it's all been done before by someone else! It's good to develop the confidence to allow yourself to make mistakes. Projects evolve and develop into the unexpected often times and this becomes part of the joy of making.
Is there anything else you'd like to add?
I feel so lucky to be able to spend my time observing, thinking, making. It's a fairly hand-to-mouth existence, but the happiest of ways to work - the appreciation of hand-made items is gaining momentum and the resurgence of up-cycling and make-do-and-mending has introduced more people to picking up a needle and thread - it's great! I'd encourage everyone to try - there'll be a craft which suits you - go on!