I've been a crafty-artsy person for as long as I can remember - I have always had a sketchbook on the go, from the age of around nine or ten - I used to want to be a fashion designer so would spend hours drawing new designs - I wish I had kept all those old sketchbooks!! I studied art and textiles all the way through school and college and kept art journals, and made a lot of my own clothes. I always wanted to learn to knit but could never get the hang of it - I remember trying to teach myself with two pencils and some string - needless to say, that didn't work too well!!
Once I left uni (without my fashion design degree), crafting and art was put to one side, I had really lost my confidence at uni, I believed that I had no creativity, that all those years of creating had been a waste of time, so I got rid of (most of) my supplies, my art materials, fabric stash - pretty much everything! I would sometimes look back through photos or my portfolio and feel a certain nostalgia for it all, but that was it.
When I was with my ex-husband I started to create again - keeping sketchbooks and journals, buying some yarn, crochet hooks and knitting needles, but my ex used to put down everything I did - when I started to knit something he would mock me, ask me what the point was and basically killed any confidence that I had managed to scrape back since leaving uni. Again, I put my supplies away.
Around the time that I was pregnant with my daughter, I again got that itch to create. This time my very lovely husband nurtured that urge, encouraging me to pick up my supplies again. I wanted to make heirloom pieces for my daughter that I could tell her the story behind: "I crocheted this blanket when you were in my tummy, and you kicked me every evening when I was sat with the crochet hook with the wool balanced on my belly". My mum showed me how to crochet a granny square and I was off! I taught myself more and more stitches, creating blankets for my daughter to snuggle into, first when she was a baby and now as a toddler - they are well-loved blankets that get dragged around the house, made into dens and castles, and taken to bed each night.
It's not just crochet that I love of course. I love sewing, whether by hand or on my machine. I used to sew a lot more when I was a student, making new clothes from old charity shop finds; I remember making a tartan skirt from an old nightie! I have a pretty big fabric stash in the attic as well as new and vintage patterns for making everything from bags and hairbands to ball gowns and Zoe-sized dungarees. One day (soon hopefully) I'll start on a sewing project, if that's a patchwork blanket or a skirt for Zoe I'm not sure yet. Then there's felt too. I would say I'm pretty obsessed with felt - I made Zoe a woodland animals felt mobile and it went from there. I now have an Etsy shop where I sell felt brooches and accessories.
What are you passionate about?