I'm super stoked to be featured in the October 2015 edition of The Koronette. The Koronette is an online magazine celebrating young and talented makers. I've copied a transcript of my interview below where I talk about my life as an artist. Click here to see the entire online publication!
Tell us a little about yourself.
Ever since I can remember I've been very into crafts and making things with my hands. I was always the kid in school who took macaroni necklaces a little too seriously. My grandma taught me how to cross-stitch when I was six, but because the design patterns that she gave me didn't interest me, I didn't take a lot of interest in it. It wasn't until I was studying design in college that I realized I could use a needle and thread to create textile art that I wanted to make without any rules or kits from the store. Once I started doing embroidery everything clicked and I developed a passion that allows me to come up with innovative designs that are unique to my aesthetic.
Do you experience creative ruts? If so, how do you overcome them?
I always seem to come up with the best ideas when I'm swamped with work. I'll often get ideas that aren't fully formed so I keep a note section in my phone that is dedicated to these half-baked ideas. When I have down-time where I feel like I'm not being inspired by anything I will pull out those ideas and try to expand upon them. Sometimes I can't seem to get the ideas to come to fruition, but a lot of times my favorite hoops can start off as being something as simple as "cat girl" on a notepad.
What is something that surprised you after starting Thread Honey?
I'm constantly surprised that people are drawn to the art that I choose. I think embroidery has an association of being something that only grandmas enjoy but I love seeing it re-interpreted by young artists. I get asked a lot where I find inspiration and my plan has always been "I'm just going to embroider stuff that I like and hopefully others like it too." I've been very fortunate to get so much positive feedback from people on Etsy and social media and it makes me excited to go even further with my small business.
Is there a piece you’re most proud of?
Recently I have started doing embroidery portrait pieces of women who inspire me like Marie Antoinette or Ruth Bader Ginsburg. They take a lot longer to sketch and embroider, but I love how the outcome turns out. I enjoy doing typography pieces but anytime I get to use my "thread painting" technique I instantly develop a stronger bond with the hoop.
Are there elements of graphic design that you implement in your embroidery projects? If so, what are they?
I use a lot of the design techniques that I learned in college as I studied visual arts. Mainly, my use of space, color and how I choose the overall tone of the hoop. Along with that, almost every single one of my hoop patterns is finalized in Adobe Illustrator, which is my go to program in my full-time job as a graphic designer. It helps me choose color schemes, play around with typography and get a good visualization of what the piece will look like before I've even started.
What are three things you need to have a productive day?
Caffeine, Netflix & good lighting.
What advice would you give to someone starting their own business?
My advice for someone who wants to start their own business is to just start! When I decided I wanted to sell embroidery hoops on Etsy I wasn't sure what exactly I was doing or if anybody would want to purchase something from me. Once I started things began to fall in place and through trial and error I was able to brand myself and narrow my focus on what I was interested in. It's an ever-changing process so doing something that I love helps me to not get burnt out and to remain positive on days that are difficult.
What are your next steps?
I'm currently developing embroidery kits for people who are interested in embroidery but don't know where to start. The kit will include everything you need to complete a hoop: needle, embroidery floss, hoop and a pattern already traced onto the fabric. I think embroidery is more accessible than it looks and I want to give everyone the opportunity to try it and hopefully fall in love!