Good Morning! Please forgive me for my LONG absence! I have been a busy little bee, however I am now, back! This week we have a lovely guest with us and I can’t wait to share her tutorial with you this upcoming Thursday! I won’t keep you waiting any longer (I feel I’ve kept you waiting long enough these past few weeks!)
So, lets welcome Claire…
✎ Tell us a little bit about yourself…
I’m Claire aka Claireabellemakes and I live in Cambridge, UK. I spend my life playing Scrabble, riding bicycles and making jewellery and accessories, as well as crocheting and knitting. I have a huge stationery obsession and adore sending snail mail. I am also a crazy cat lady which I’m really not ashamed of.
✎ How would you explain your style and and what is your work process?
Ultimately I like to make things that look nice! I tend to stick with pastel colours when working with fabric and when I make accessories, I prefer items that can be worn every day. Most of my projects begin with a notebook sketch or plan, and I often try multiple versions of projects until I get it just right. My preferred work space is definitely my craft studio space in my home, but I often meet friends for crochet and tea afternoons too.
✎ Where did your love of handmade begin for you? Do you have any upcoming projects?
My grandmother taught me to knit as a child and I would spend hours making garter stitch scarves with tons of dropped stitches! I’ve always been ‘crafty’ but over the last 3 years my love of handmade has really grown. There are so many talented makers out there, it is hard not to be inspired to craft yourself. My current projects include some crochet blankets and new Scrabble accessories for my Etsy store. I am very tempted to start another crochet jumper too as you can’t beat a handmade garment.
✎ For you, what is the best part of working in the craft industry?
In a personal sense, it’s the community and how supportive everyone is. There is a great feeling of encouragement and such a willingness to help others. I’ve always been a people person and it makes me happy that there are so many people enjoying craft. Making something with your own hands is a great feeling and being able to share that with others is really positive. In a business sense, I adore the interaction with customers to create gifts and custom orders. I recently made a Scrabble Wall Art as a groom’s gift to his bride and it was such a special feeling to be part of their day.
✎ You’ve done a lot of work with many people in this industry, such as Make and Craft Magazine. Are there any you dream of working or collaborating with?
Over the last year I have worked with a publisher to contribute to some craft books alongside other makers. One day I would love to work with a publisher in creating my own title, but I know there is a lot to learn first! I think every maker would love to be featured in Mollie Make magazine too, it’s just such an inspiring publication!
✎ And finally, what advice would you give to someone branching out in the handmade world?
Be brave and push yourself. Keep your eyes open for opportunities. I have done things I never thought I would be capable of and I’m pleased I did! I would also recommend being as organised as you can possibly be if you are planning to make as a business. I’m a big fan of my Filofax for organising and planning and I think I’d be lost without it.
Please join Claire on Thursday, where she will be sharing with us a tutorial, involving paper & embroidery! Two lovely handmade elements! In the mean time, do check out Claires work on her blog, instagram, pinterest, twitter and her etsy!