This month, I'm excited to announce that we've a new member of the Craftiosity team! Meet Kathryn; craft lover, workshop curator over at Kaff's Crafts, and now Marketing and Admin Assistant at Craftiosity!
I love Kathryn's enthusiasm for craft and sharing her passion with others, so today she's telling us how she got into crafting, what she does over at Kaff's Crafts, and tips for anyone who wants to explore their creative side...
How did you first get into crafting?
Being creative has always been a big part of my life; I was always looking forward to art classes rather than maths or science! My Mum was an incredibly crafty lady, she could bake, sew, crochet - you name it, she did it! So that's definitely where I get my skills from, and she taught me a lot of what I know today, especially sewing, baking and crocheting.
I did an Art & Design Foundation Degree after my A Levels which I loved, and that introduced to me to loads of amazing techniques like weaving (on the most amazing, humongous looms - wish I had one now!!), screen-printing, jewellery making and more. I actually went on to study Psychology at university, but managed to keep crafting on the side - my Dad even bought me a mini sewing machine to take with me!
When I came home from uni, I worked on a sheep farm that had glamping tents (best.job.ever), and taught felt making classes to kids that were staying there; it was chaotic but soooo much fun!
Once I started out in the 'real world' of work, crafting became something that I retreated to on my lunch breaks and at home, for a bit of escapism. When my friends saw me creating things at work, they'd all ask me to teach them, so I held my first ever class for them in my kitchen and that's how Kaff's Crafts was born!
Can you tell us about Kaff's Crafts?
My little baby!... Kaff's Crafts is an outlet for me to share projects that I'm working on, but it's also where I talk about and announce my workshops. So far my classes have just been macramé based, as this seems to be such a huge interior trend that people are loving at the moment, but I've got lots of exciting new ideas in the pipeline that explore all sorts of different areas of crafting!
As much as crafting is central to the workshops, so is creating a sense of togetherness, so in my workshops I really try to make it as much of a fun and inviting experience as possible; you'll always be met with a warm smile, cup of tea or coffee and endless cake (because what is crafting without cake!?)!
I currently only run workshops in Swindon, where I live, but one day I'd love to be travelling around Wiltshire and beyond to bring crafting into more people's lives!
Where do you get your inspiration from?
Crafting for me is quite an exploratory thing, and so my inspiration isn't always taken from something specific. When I pick up a crochet hook or begin a weaving, I'm not always sure what it is I want to create, I kind of just pick up things that I've got leftover from other projects, and see where it takes me - which I suppose is the joy of crafting!
When I'm making things it's usually for somebody else; I absolutely adore giving people handmade gifts and showing my love through crafting. There's something so magical about making something for someone special in your life; it becomes something really personal and so they, in turn, become my inspiration.
Sometimes words can't explain or convey what you want to tell someone, but when you've spent hours working on something you think they'll love, your sentiment speaks for itself.
What are your tips for people who want to get into crafting?
I honestly say just go for it! Watch online tutorials, pick up crafting books, come along to a Kaff's Crafts workshop (shameless plug! Other workshops are available...) or even better - get a Craftiosity craft kit!
The best thing about crafting is there aren't any rules. I'd say pretty much everything I have created has an element of imperfection; I've missed a stitch somewhere or messed up a knot. The beauty of it is learning and enjoying the process, and embracing any mistakes as part of your work.
The joy you'll get out of creating something you made with your own hands is so fulfilling that you really won't care once you sit back and look at your new work of art! Just enjoy exploring your creativity; it lives within all of us!
Lastly, how excited are you about joining the Craftiosity team!?
VERY excited! It's amazing the doors that have opened since beginning Kaff's Crafts, and what an absolute joy to have found Craftiosity and join Moira on this journey. She's developed a gorgeous brand, and I love how accessible it makes crafting. I can't wait to see the places Craftiosity will go in the future!
I hope this has helped to inspire you to explore crafting more, and you'll see a lot more of Kathryn around Craftiosity! Do check out her wonderful work, and if you'd like to pop along to one of her workshops or enquire about private bookings, drop her an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.