Meet the Maker – Julie from Crochet and Smile

Meet the Maker - Julie from Crochet and Smile #crochet #knitting #meet #maker

It was really great to meet Julie from Crochet and Smile a few weeks ago at the Reading store. She has been running the Knit and Natter there for many years and offers crochet advice to anyone that needs it. She also makes lots of cute amigurumi animals.

Meet the Maker – Julie from Crochet and Smile

How did you first get into crochet ?

My love of crochet started with a craft group at my local Hobbycraft, it was lead by a talented member of staff and we were taught how to make a beaded wire crochet bracelet. It was a jump into the world of crochet.  I had always loved being crafty with my kids but this was something for me.

Over the past 4 years I have created a home of yarn, hooks and with the help of YouTube and online blogs I have become fully immersed into the creative fun of crochet.

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What’s your favourite thing to make ?

I adore making amigurumi, small cute stuffed animals and creatures.  It’s such a creative way to crochet and you can make a character in an evening which means I actually finish a project. It’s great for using lots of different types of yarns and experimenting with patterns and colours to make fun and original creature

How many projects do you have at the moment ?

I will confess I have a few WIP’s, blankets are collecting in project bags that have been started as I get easily distracted by new projects.  Also blankets without the ends sewn in are a normal sight in my home, might just have to back the blanket with fleece then no one will know.

For my amigurumi I have various boxes in drawer units full of parts of animals waiting for the next part to be made and then waiting to be sewn together, currently octopus legs and hedgehog bodies are quietly awaiting their other parts, one day I might sew these together to see what new original creature I can create.

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What other crafts are you into ?

Hobbycraft is completely to blame for my crafting obsession, I have learnt so many crafts from instore workshops which now include my love for jewellery making, papercrafting, felting, glass painting, hand embroidery and lots more and even more recently got the Sewing Bee bug and bought myself a sewing machine.

So when I’m not sat with a hook in my hand, a rare occasion, I have so much choice.   I also love to create birthday and celebration cards for the family.  Just wished there were more hours in the day to be crafty.

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What’s your favourite thing you have made ?

This was a difficult one to decide on, it has to be a split decision between my first crochet owl which I designed myself.  He’s called Owlie and inspires me to always try as anything is possible.

And my first complete blanket which took 6 months, it’s a sofa blanket and huge, I love it’s colours that I selected from my stash and its complete coziness and a great sense of achievement.

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Where do you find your inspiration ?

Inspiration can pop up from anywhere, I am an avid Pinterest follower so enjoy seeing current trends, Ravelry is my crochet home online for patterns and seeing creations which are shared and enjoyed across the world.  Crochet blogs are also an enjoyable way to see new ideas and try new stitches and patterns. And I’m just getting into Instagram a great quick way to see other creative makes. DSC_0584

What is next for you ?

Sharing my love of crochet with workshops is currently in my plans, together with spending time to create and write my own patterns seems to be next natural move forward.  I would love to have my own range of creatures that people recognise as my trademark.

But first I desperately want to get into Weaving, with my home currently full of yarn and such wonderful inspiration of modern weaving from the likes of the talented Maryanne Moodie, weaving seems like yarn heaven I have to enter next.

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