Tag: interview

Hooking With … Becca of Mayhem and Majesty

Hooking With … Becca of Mayhem and Majesty

In this edition of Hooking With … we are finding out more about the very lovely Becca from Mayhem and Majesty! Becca is a designer that I have not had the opportunity to work with … yet. I’m hoping our paths will cross some more 

Hooking With …. Ashley Parker (The Loopy Lamb)

Hooking With …. Ashley Parker (The Loopy Lamb)

Today in Hooking With … we are meeting Ashley Market from The Loopy Lamb. Ashley has a lot of different types of patterns on her site – some of her ami patterns are gorgeous!.   Shall we dive straight into the interview? Hi! My name 

Hooking With – Emma Wilkinson

Hooking With – Emma Wilkinson

In this edition of Hooking With … we meet Emma Wilkinson. I first met Emma through a business coach and she often jokes that we are cousins because we have the same surname. Emma is such a lovely, vibrant personality and I know a lot of you are going to love her designs!

Shall we meet Emma Wilkinson of Emma Wilkinson Designs?

Let’s start with a hello from Emma herself before we dive into our questions.

 

I live in the outer suburbs of Sydney, Australia,  with my husband and four sons.

With an advanced Diploma of Fine Art under my belt, I turned to the world of fibre art shortly before the birth of my third son.

Inspired by nature, in particular Australian landscapes, juxtaposed with bold shapes and colours, means you’ll either find me working in soft greys and muted greens, or bright pink and yellow! I also design for my climate – which means you’ll see me design fingerless gloves or lightweight scarves for my mild winter.

I currently design crochet patterns for digital release, kits and magazines.

Patterns range from Beginner Friendly to Intermediate Skill builders for those who have mastered the basics and want to master a new stitch or technique

Thanks for being here, and happy crocheting!

 

 

When did you start designing?

My first ‘real’ pattern was published in 2015 – I’ve given it a little facelift this year- the ‘Starburst Square’

Do you have a blog? If so, when did you start that up?

I started blogging way back in 2009, but my current blog has been around since 2016. You can find it at www.EmmaWilkinsonDesigns.com

What was your initial plan with your blog and designs?

My inital designs were small motifs, and I’ve moved on to more complex stitches and patterns

What designs do you specialize in?

I don’t feel like I have a niche – but I like homewares, bags and accessories

The Primrose Wrap by Emma

Do you have a favorite few stitches you like to use or do you always try to do new ones?

I have my favourites – like moss stitch, but I do like to try new and different techniques.

When you come up with an idea, does it come first from yarn you have or do you find yarn to fit the idea?

A bit of both really. I self publish, and do freelance design work – so sometimes need to fit a theme.

When did you start crocheting?

I first learned from my Grandma when I was 12, but I didn’t pick it up as a hobby until I was 30(ish) and my third son was born.

What made you decide to become a designer?

It felt like a natural progression from craft blogger to writing patterns. I’m not sure when I made that decsion, but it was my goal almost straight away.

 

 

Are there any patterns not your own that you just love?

Yes – I made a Tunisian Shawl last year called the Smirr Shawl, and I adore it.

Of your patterns, which is your favorite and why?

I’m really proud of the group collaborations I’ve been a part of, such as the Frindship CAL and the Unity CAL, which are both running right now.

Are there any crochet techniques/stitches you wish to learn this year?

I have done a tiny bit of mosaic crochet, but I’d like to do a bit more. I would also like to explore Tunisian Crochet some more.

What are your biggest crochet challenges and how do you plan on overcoming that?

As a crocheter – I’m easily distracted. I sometimes take my crochet out of the house so I can focus on it. As a designer, I’ve always struggled with asking for pattern testers, but I think I’m now comfortable asking!

Have you ever lost your crojo and how did you overcome that?

Yes! I love little cross stitch kits and will work one one of those, or even do some knitting. I learned how to knot socks over the lock down last year (lots of youtube videos). Or i’ll do something I don’t have to think about, like granny squares.

What three tips can you offer to anyone that crochets?

There are no crochet police – you can change things if you want to, however frogging a whole project that doesn’t spark joy can be just as

 

Free pattern links by Emma Wilkinson:

You can check out some of Emma’s free patterns by clicking the pictures below. Emma also has a free pattern when you sign up to her newsletter. If you would like to sign up you can do so here. If you would like to follow Emma on Instagram check her out at www.instagram.com/emma_wilkinson_designs

The Dahlia Pinnata Square
The Sol Square
Hooking With …. Sadie Sheppard of Osage County Crochet

Hooking With …. Sadie Sheppard of Osage County Crochet

Sadie is the lady behind Osage County Crochet and has a fun and quirky personality. I have been following her for quite a while and have been a member of her community group for way longer than I have been designing. I am THRILLED that 

Hooking With… Shannon of The Loophole Fox

Hooking With… Shannon of The Loophole Fox

I am so thrilled to be sharing today’s interview with you guys! In today’s Hooking With meet Shannon, a designer that I have met through some events we have been part of and are in the same designers group on IG. She is such a 

Hooking With …. Joey Baird

Hooking With …. Joey Baird

Today in our Hooking With feature I am thrilled to be introducing you to Joey Baird of Jo’s Crafty Hook! Joey and I have ‘known’ each other for a couple of years (as much as you can ‘know’ anyone over the internet!) and have tested each others patterns on occasion. She is a lady with a big heart. You may recognise her if you are part of our Community group on Facebook as she is also a member there. Jo has also contributed patterns in several events, including our first Preemie Crochet Challenge in August!

Let’s find out more about her!

My name is Joey (Jo) Lea Baird and I live in a small town in NE Ohio.  I am happily married and have a grown son and daughter.  My family always came first for me and when my kids were adults I went through the ‘empty nest syndrome’ for years.  I didn’t have any idea on how to fill my time.  But 4 years later, in 2016, I picked up my LOVE of crochet to fill my empty nest and haven’t turned back since.  That’s when Jo’s Crafty Hook was created.

 

 

For years my family, especially my daughter, who was my guinea pig for the new things I wanted to try kept telling me I should open an Etsy Shop.  So for 2 years, 2016-2018 I crocheted enough items to fill up a shop.  In January of 2018 I opened an Etsy Shop JosCraftyHook

When did you start designing?

I started designing in May of 2018.

Do you have a blog? If so when did that start?

Yes I have a blog.  I started my blog in May of 2018.  But it wasn’t until 2019 that I really found my niche.

 

What was your initial plan with your blog and designs?

My initial plan with my blog was to share my story about my struggles with Scoliosis and to share my love of crochet.  My crochet designs didn’t really come into the picture until I decided I didn’t want to share sob stories about my life with Scoliosis.

How have your designs and designing process evolved?

My designs started out being Hats and Scarves.  I still design those but not as frequently.  My designing evolved after I started testing women’s garments.  I fell in LOVE with creating something beautiful for others to wear with simple stitches and string.  My sister, who supported me from the beginning, once sent me a GIF telling me I practiced witchcraft.  lol

What designs do you specialize in?

The designs I now specialize in are womens’ garments.  Tops, Sweaters, Ponchos, Shawls, etc.

 

 

Do you have a favorite few stitches you like to use or do you always try to do new ones?

Oh Boy!  My favorite stitches change about every couple of months.  When testing patterns for other designers, if I learn a new stitch my mind fills with SO many ideas.  When I learned the N Stitch while testing for you I designed the N’ybody Beanie , the Nellie Summer Tee and the Nellie Poncho.

Right now my favorites stitches are the Argyle Shell Stitch and the Wrapped Double Crochet.  I have designed about 5 or 6 designs this year using the Argyle Shell Stitch.  I am currently designing 2 pocket shawls using both the Wrapped Double Crochet and the Argyle Shell Stitch.  I am hoping to release an eBook at the end of the year with all of my Argyle Shell Stitch designs.

When you come up with an idea, does it come first from yarn you have or do you find yarn to fit the idea?

When I come up with an idea I find the yarn to fit the idea.  Like my Diamonds Summer Tee, I came up with the idea and bought a lightweight yarn to use.  With it being summer time I didn’t want to use worsted weight, I wanted something that women could wear with out the tee weighing them down.

When did you start crocheting?

I started crocheting when I was a child but it was only the basics.  I could only crochet the chain and single crochet.  I had some REALLY long chains.  lol

It wasn’t until both of my children were in school that I started making a real effort to learn how to crochet.  My mom would come over every week for over a year and sit with me and teach me how to crochet and follow a pattern.

What made you decide to become a designer?

In 2018 with my Etsy Shop opening I would advertise the designs that others had published.  When a friend asked me to customize a sweater for her it set off a spark inside me.  I wanted to be able to create something of my own.

 

 

Are there any patterns not your own that you just love?

There are SO many patterns by other designers that I love!  I LOVE the pattern you just released on your website, the Mermaid Dreams Cowl!  I really loved how the different colors made the design pop.  I also love ChristaCoDesigns’ patterns and Rachy Newin’s shawls.

 

Who/what inspired you?  Does this still inspire you?  Why?

My Gram is the one who inspired me.  She passed away a few years ago.  She inspired me by creating beautiful dolls, afghans, and home decor items.  She was never afraid to try something new.  That is what really inspired me.  I LOVE trying new things.  I LOVE the challenge it brings into my life because it then causes a deep desire for me to try and design something similar or new.

Of your patterns, which is your favorite and why?

Out of all my patterns my Tulip Sweater Vest is my favorite.  The vest was my very first pattern I designed.  At that time I was SO in love with the Tulip Stitch that I had so many different ideas running through my head.  I do look back through my first patterns from time to time and I see the changes from where I was then to where I am today.

Are there any crochet techniques/stitches you wish to learn this year?

There are so many amazing stitches and techniques out there that catch my eye, but I really want to learn how to design my own triangle shawl.  I see so many of them and all the different stitches people use to create them and I get SO jealous because I have no idea how to begin or what stitches to use.

 

What are your biggest crochet challenges and how do you plan on overcoming that?

My biggest crochet challenges are adding bundles and eBooks with my designs to Ravelry, LoveCraft, and Etsy.  I plan on overcoming this by trial and error mostly.  lol  I just have to sit myself down, without any distractions and research how to create them.  Once things slow down after the new year, 2021 that is one of my main goals.

 

Have you ever lost your crojo and how did you overcome that?

Yes, there have been a couple of times that I have lost my crojo.  I lost it and I had NO idea why I was feeling so distant from crocheting.  I just put everything aside, I didn’t test for any other designers and I just tried to forget about anything that had to do with crochet.  Then one day I asked myself why would I forbid myself to do something that made me happy and content?  I overcame it by focusing on only what I got out of crocheting.  I didn’t compare my designs to others, I didn’t say theirs is way better than mine, I just picked it back up to make myself happy.

 

 

What three tips can you offer to anyone that crochets?

Three tips that I can offer to other crocheters….

  • Don’t be afraid to try new things
  • Don’t compare yourself or your work to others
  • Don’t be afraid to make mistakes

As crocheters we see so many beautiful and wonderful things that people crochet or design.  We tell ourselves “I can’t make that!”  “There is no way I can do that!”  Everyone has had to start somewhere.  Even designers who have a lot of patterns make mistakes.  You just have to keep putting yourself out there and go at your own pace.  Crochet has SO many wonderful benefits.  Enjoy yourself while you do it.

 

Try her patterns!

Joey has provided the link to her free Nellie’s Poncho pattern here.

You can also find other free patterns she has available on her blog here.

Hooking With …. Allison Bostrom

Hooking With …. Allison Bostrom

In this edition of Hooking With we are meeting Allison Bostrom from Clair De Lune Fiber Art. I have gotten to know Allison a little bit over recent months. We ‘met’ while participating in some of the events over the summer. She is a gorgeous 

Hooking With: Creations by Courtney

Hooking With: Creations by Courtney

Meet Courtney, at Creations by Courtney This week on Hooking With, we are meeting Courtney, of Creations by Courtney.  We asked her your questions and she responded! About Courtney Creations By Courtney is your destination for discovering crochet garment and accessory patterns for curating a 

Hooking With: Woodland Stitchcraft

Hooking With: Woodland Stitchcraft

Hooking With: Woodland Stitchcraft

This week on Hooking With, we are getting to know Bonnie of Woodland Stitchcraft!  I found her answers to our questions to be very interesting.  Read on…

 

Introduction

Hi there! I’m Bonnie and I am the crochet designer behind my pattern shop, Woodland Stitchcraft! I am a wife and work at home mom of three. I have 12 year old twin boys, Cole and Luke, and a soon to be four year old little girl named Autumn.

We live in the beautiful foothills of California surrounded by mountains and the Stanislaus National Forest.  This forest is what inspired the “woodland” part of my business name!

Crochet design and motherhood take up most of my time.  However, I also enjoy hiking, swimming, listening to true crime podcasts, and drinking ALL the coffee. Though I don’t get to it often enough, I also like to dabble in drawing.

I have a love for nature and vintage fashion, and you’ll find most of my designs reflect these passions.  I strive to create children’s garment and accessory patterns that leave you with an item that is beautiful, timeless, and can become an heirloom.  You can find most of my designs on Etsy and Ravelry.  I also have a small blog where I have free patterns so that anyone can try out my designs and style of pattern writing.

Designing crochet is so much fun and I hope my patterns bring a little creative joy to everyone that makes from them.

 

  1. When did you start designing?

I started designing about 3 years ago.  I wanted to make a bonnet for my daughter, Autumn, and couldn’t find a pattern that I liked.  So I designed my own!

Once I realized that I could create my own designs, I fell in love with it.

 

  1. Do you have a blog? If so, when did you start that up?

Yes, I do!  I just started it last year and it’s still pretty new.  However, I am still learning a lot about how they work so it’s a small blog right now.  I have free patterns up there and am still exploring what other type of content I want to share.

  1. What was your initial plan with your blog and designs?

When I first started designing, I had no plans to do it full time. In the beginning I really wanted to create items I could sell, and would just do the patterns from those items on the side.

The longer I designed though, the more time I spent on it and the more I really started to love it.  Finding that I was more enthusiastic about designing made me realize it’s where I should go with my business.  Eventually, I began to move my focus towards that and leave the finished items behind.

Once I transitioned entirely into pattern writing, I decided that a blog would be a good addition to that.

 

  1. How have your designs and designing process evolved?

It took me a while to find my style.  Starting out with random designs, I had beanies, cowls, backpacks, stuffed animals, and décor.

I was doing anything I could think of.  I think I really started to focus after I wrote out that first bonnet pattern finally and published it.  Looking at bonnets and bonnet styling ideas took me down a bit of a rabbit hole of vintage styles, and I fell in love.

After the bonnet I did a suspender skirt.  That took me even more into that rabbit hole, and I just have kept going.  I now find my inspiration for designs almost exclusively within that vintage aesthetic.

 

  1. What designs do you specialize in?

I specialize in children’s designs. I do lots of garments and find myself going that way more often these days.  However, I also do some accessories because I LOVE bonnets.  Additionally, I have several patterns for bonnets but I have also done faux collars and legwarmers.  Everything is designed for children.

I do have a couple of my designs that go up to adult sizes.

  1. Do you have a favorite few stitches you like to use or do you always try to do new ones?

I try and find new ones to use.  Hunting for stitches to use in an idea is something I actually think is a lot of fun.

I do have some favorites though.  V-stitches and shell stitches have been in a lot of my designs. I think my favorite of all time is post stitches.  There is so much you can do with front and back post stitches as far as textures and designs go.  Just those two stitches can make so many different unique looks just depending on how you put them together.

 

  1. When you come up with an idea, does it come first from yarn you have or do you find yarn to fit the idea?

I find yarn to fit the idea for sure.  Most of the time, I draw or list out my ideas and then I’ll order yarn for that design when I get to it on my list.

I am also usually making the item for my daughter Autumn, so I like to order the yarn after deciding on the design.  I’ll pick a color that I think will go with some of the other items I might use in the outfit.

 

  1. When did you start crocheting?

I started crocheting about 5 years ago.

I had a nephew on the way and found a hat on Pinterest that I thought would be perfect for him.  It was a crochet pattern, so not something I could buy.  Having a close friend who I knew could crochet, I asked her if she would teach me how to make this hat and she did!

I had a lot of fun with it and stuck to it, even after giving that present.  I try to crochet every baby that comes along something.

  1. What made you decide to become a designer?

I wanted to create some really specific styles, and just wasn’t finding patterns out there that were what I wanted.   So it was really out of filling a need for myself as a product maker.

Once I got a taste for it, I just kept going and found that I actually liked it more than selling finished pieces.  I did both for the first couple years.  Then after the last Christmas season, I took down all my finished pieces and have made the switch fully into designing.

 

  1. Are there any patterns not your own that you just love?

I have lots of designers that I love but I’ll just name a couple.

Mon Petit Violin patterns are some of my favorites, especially her little dresses and rompers. She has beautiful designs and I have made lots of them.

Another designer that I love is The Velvet Acorn.  Her designs are so great and I think they can really be made to fit into any wardrobe.  Plus she takes some really beautiful pictures in gorgeous outdoor settings that I just love.

 

  1. Who/what inspired you? Does this still inspire you? Why?

I got pregnant with my daughter shortly after learning to crochet.  Which I think really inspired me to keep going when I was new to it because I wanted to make her stuff.

She has become the full inspiration now and still continues to be.  Almost everything I design comes from a place of wanting to make her cute things to wear.   We also have a lot of fun going out to places to get the pictures of the items.  She loves getting dressed up and when I finish items she knows they are for her and gets really excited.

I think it’s really become not only something I just like to do because I need a creative outlet, but also something that I bond with Autumn over.

 

  1. Of your patterns, which is your favorite and why?

This is a hard question for me! I am always really excited about whatever my current design is so usually it’s that one.

I am really excited for one I am working on now that isn’t done yet. I’ve learned that you can make little pictures with post stitches.  There is a tunic design I have that I am working on which uses this technique.  I am having so much fun with it and can’t wait to get it out there, so that’s probably the one I’m the most excited about.

If I am choosing from ones that are already out there, I would go with my Willow Skirt pattern. I love those long skirts with buttons and so now that I have a crochet version, I am even more in love with that style.

  1. Are there any crochet techniques/stitches you wish to learn this year?

Tunisian crochet is something I would like to get more into. I have made a few things with it and have a small bow pattern that uses it but would like to try some more out. I have a bonnet design that I want to do with Tunisian here soon.  So I am going to be spending some more time learning about that and practicing that skill set this year.

Of course there are always more stitches and I can never get enough of trying new ones out. I think that’s why crochet is such a fun craft!  Because there really are SO many possibilities with it, that you’ll never get bored.

 

  1. What are your biggest crochet challenges and how do you plan on overcoming that?

My biggest challenge is focus.  I tend to get really distracted by the next shiny new idea or project and then take a lot longer to finish designs than I should. I have that curse of the creative mind, so the creation of the thing is my favorite part.  When it comes to sitting down and doing the math and writing out all the steps, I am not as enthusiastic.

Working on making sure I follow through with the pattern process entirely before I move on to the next design is one focus.  Making plans and release commitments that I can stick to is another focus right now. I’m still a work in progress when it comes to all that but I am getting better about it.

 

  1. Have you ever lost your crojo and how did you overcome it?

I have! I kind of just forced myself to keep crocheting.  So I found projects that I had been excited about when I bought or saved the pattern and would work on those.

Making sure the things you are making are things you love is really important. The times I have not wanted to crochet were when I made commitments to crochet things that I wasn’t excited about.  So I really try to stick to things I am passionate about.

  1. What three tips can you offer to anyone that crochets?

Well, I think that last question had a good tip. Crochet things you love! You are going to have much more fun and grow your creativity when you are excited about the things you are making.

Next tip would be to dive into the crochet community. There are AMAZING people out there.  Nothing is more fun than sharing something you are passionate about with other people. It will inspire you, teach you and I bet you will make some awesome friends. I have!

My last tip would be to never stop learning! Crochet is truly an amazing form of art.  My hope is people don’t just stop at the surface of it, because the possibilities are endless!

Woodland Stitchcraft

Featured Pattern

I am offering my Lil’ Sprout Shorts pattern free for today only!  Grab it HERE.

Use the code, SUNFLOWERFRIENDS (just copy and paste!) at the Ravelry check-out to get it!

 

Conclusion

Thank you Bonnie of Woodland Stitchcraft, for taking the time to answer all our Hooking With questions, which our readers help us choose.  We love to learn from each other and this is a great way to get to know others that share our passion for crocheting and designing.

If you missed our last Hooking With feature, check it out here.

Don’t forget, if you sign up for our newsletter, you get access to an exclusive code to use that will give you a percentage off all of our patterns!

Next time on Hooking With… We are featuring Creations by Courtney.  Hope to see you there!

Hooking With … Mary Beth

Hooking With … Mary Beth

Mary Beth is a designer I came across about a year ago now. She is the lady behind Crochet with Mary Beth and is such a sweet lady who likes to crochet fashion! I also like that she has some book reviews on her blog.