When I was about 9 years old, I distinctly remember that THE big craft craze was macrame. My mother taught me how to do it, and the only colour we had to work with was orange. It was gross, even for the 80s! The other thing I remember is that there was only ONE craft craze at a time. Everyone was into the same thing, and that thing was everywhere! My mother taught cottage crafts from home, and I watched ladies make photo frames from cereal boxes, covered with wadding and fabric and that awful pre-gathered synthetic lace. They covered photo albums, bins, made toilet roll holders with bums made from stockings & polyfill, and laughed & laughed at how clever they all were. As a child it was mesmerising and inspiring.
Fast forward to my early 20’s, and I remember being at a Stitches & Craft show at Rosehill. I remember wondering to myself where all these new crafts had come from, and over the course of the next decade I tried pretty much every single one. Hobby ceramics, folk art painting, pen & wash, beading, candlewicking, quilting, polymer clay, scrapbooking, cardmaking, embossing, stamping, bear making, miniatures, dollmaking, cross-stitching … the show had made everything available to me.
Fast forward to my early 30’s, and I remember being at a Stitches & Craft show at Rosehill. I remember wondering to myself why there wasn’t anything new. I marvelled at how people were taking 2 or 3 or 4 different crafts and mooshing them all together. It was like they were scraping the bottom of the barrel, trying desperately to appeal to the women like me who had tried it all, bought it all and moved on. We were looking for something new, and while many fell for the morphing of crafts, I did not … I could see through it, and I’d had enough. There and then I decided it was time to get back to basics, because to excel at any given craft, you need to master the basics.
Fast forward to now … as time moves along, things change, and my idea that a merging of crafts was a ruse to make me spend more money, has changed somewhat. Sure, at that show it was a marketing ruse, but nowadays I find myself looking at this large skill base I’ve built myself and wondering what the heck I can do with it. I realise that I’m not really looking for a new challenge or to break new ground. What I want to do is play with the crafts I’m comfortable with, that I have learned well, and use them to make beautiful things, to help my community, and to make a dent in the rather sizable stash I’ve been building for the last couple of decades!
I have had people ask me how I got where I am now. I have the best job in the world … I get to share my crafting knowledge and passion as host of Scrap It TV. In a nutshell, I got here because I took the time to volunteer for my painting association (FDAA), helping out at the shows, sales & exhibitions. I was in the right place, with the right people, at the right time, and it has snowballed since. The photo above is a filming day at the home of Bella / Ruby RockIt & Fundamentals craft supplies last week for Season 6. I hope our viewers like the projects.
Here’s the thing … as a 9 year old, making orange macrame purses and owls, I didn’t know that I would be hosting a tv show, designing for big brands, or having projects published in magazines a couple of decades later. What I did know was that I loved making things, I loved learning new skills, and I loved spending time with my Mum as she taught me. I dare you to try something new … a new skill, a new craft, a new language, a new coffee shop. You never know where it may take you.