When did you first start crafting and how did you learn?
I started crafting when I was a little girl. My mother taught me all kinds of crafts, and gave me (relatively!) free reign in her sewing room. Over the years I took craft and art classes but my real learning came from doing, and making, and making mistakes...you know, that wonderful process of experimentation.
Can you remember the first thing you made?
I drew constantly. My parents made sure I was always well-stocked with paper, crayons and colored pencils and I probably drew something every day. In terms of crafting, it's a toss-up between cross-stitch Christmas tree ornaments and felt clothes for my clothespin dolls. (I spent *hours* on those clothespin dolls...where could they be now???)
Where do you look for inspiration?
My best sources of inspiration are outside my studio. I'll go to a bookstore and look at the covers of the best-selling novels—the photography/illustration, layout and fonts are always inspiring. Fashion magazines show different ways to approach texture and color. Music videos are another great fashion inspiration and the colors and clothing styles can translate to crafting. Check out store displays (clothing stores, florists, kitchen supply stores, furniture stores)—even a poke around IKEA can foster ideas for color, composition and style. It can all be translated to the craft you do!
What's your craft space like and how do you organize your supplies?
I'm lucky to have a room of my own for my studio. I have two big tables, one for desk work (filming videos, using the computer) and another for crafting work. I organize most of my supplies in clear plastic bins. It's not the most beautiful, but it means I can stack them and still see what's inside. I keep all of my frequently-used tools in recycled jars and tins on my desk. It can look chaotic but I know where everything is!
Because we live in a rental house, I can't personalize the room to my dream specifications (which would include shelves!) so I make the most of the space in a way that's as rental-friendly as possible!
My craft space is also furnished with two feline assistants and one preschooler. :)
What music/podcasts/TV shows do you love to craft along to?
I LOVE to listen to podcasts while I work. I find they occupy my monkey mind, which allows my hands and instinct to do the designing without interruption!
Jamie Ridler has a great podcast on creativity called Creative Living with Jamie. Danielle LaPorte has Beautiful Writers, which is a thought-provoking podcast on creativity. A fun one is Pop Fashion, which is about the fashion industry but has interesting correlations to any creative industry (plus the ladies are great to listen to). I also listen to Documentaries on the BBC World Radio, News from Poland (in English, of course) and This American Life.
Working solo and living abroad can be a bit isolating sometimes, so podcasts really do help me get a bit of news and community!
Do you do any other crafts and what are your hobbies?
My main crafts are papercrafting and jewelry making. Since crafting is my job, I've shifted a bit in terms of hobbies. I'm a big reader, so reading is less of a hobby and more of a necessity! I love yoga and walking and photography; I write and journal every day. I'm mama to a preschooler, so I'm fortunate to have an excuse to do "kids" hobbies like papier mache dinosaurs, coloring and playing dress-up!