It is my great pleasure today to introduce you to my lovely friend Shelley from Spincushions. Shelley has just written a new e-book More Than a Granny – 20 Versatile Crochet Square Patterns which I will review later in the post but let’s get to know Shelley first …
Can you tell us a little about yourself Shelley?
I’m Shelley and I love to design crochet squares. I live with my hubby & 3 girls in rural Victoria by the sea. I’ve always been a crafty girl, trying my hand at many crafts over the years. My current obsession is crochet, but I also knit and embroider when the mood strikes me.
Where does your inspiration come from?
Inspiration for me is either there in my face or more subtle. Sometimes I have a specific idea that I must try to create, other times, I let the yarn and hook work their magic as I go with no clear aim in mind. I have designed an entire throw based around the sea. Most of the patterns for that I designed with the as I went method. After I had finished a few blocks, I realised the sea had made it’s way into them and so I decided to go with that and designed blocks with clear imagery in mind such as whale’s tails and waves. Both ways suit me.
How does your creative process work?
My creative process is getting more organised. When I first began crochet designs, I would randomly come up with patterns with no specific purpose. These days, I have more complete ideas and tend to see the through to fruition, attempting to finish one before moving on to the next idea.
How did you get started?
I got started crocheting when I was 10 and I helped my Mum make a granny square blanket for my new baby sister. When that was finished, I didn’t touch a hook for more years than I care to mention. I felt the urge to move on from my previous crafty endeavour about 3 years ago and turned my hands and mind to crochet. I began with a 25 pattern sampler blanket that started with a granny square and moved on to more complex designs. I really loved that process so when that was finished, I ran my own CAL over 52 weeks, sourcing patterns from all over the internet. Before that came to an end, I had started designing my own patterns. I can’t seem to stop designing now.
What are your future plans?
My plans for the future include more ebooks, The next couple will be all about complete novices getting started. I love to teach others the joys of hook in hand, so my aim is to teach those who’ve struggled before to learn. I believe anyone can do it. I plan on starting with a How to Crochet a Granny Square ebook, and follow that with a book that teaches folks how to read crochet patterns and go Beyond the Granny Square. In between all the beginner stuff, I am sure I will be keeping my hand in designing more complex designs and More than a Granny will have a follow up ebook at some stage. Away from ebooks, I will be running crochet workshops locally and still designing patterns for Ravelry and my Etsy shop.
Do you have any creative advice to others who are inspired but don’t know where to start?
My advice for anyone wanting to get moving on their creative idea is just go for it! What’s the worst that can happen? Be prepared to break the rules, once you’ve learned them. Get out there on social media and share what you’re up to with other creative types. I love the support and friendship I have received on Instagram. You don’t have to set up an etsy shop and do it all as soon as you start. Take your time and really develop your ideas. Let things flow naturally and I am sure your creativity will show.
Thanks for sharing Shelley. I love learning more about what makes people tick.
And now for my book review. I’m no wordsmith when it comes to these things so here is a list of my 5 Favourite Things About This Book
1 I like the variety of designs included in this book. There is something to suit all tastes ranging from pretty and flowery right through to simple and plain (but still stunning)
2 I like the clear layout of the book and easy to follow instructions. I especially like the stitch dictionary with ‘how-to’ video links included for those who are more visual learners.
3 The hints and tips included to help you achieve a seamless, professional finish to you work.
4 The versatility of the 20 designs. All would look equally fab together or you could select your favourite few to make stunning blankets or cushions.
5 I like that the patterns range in skill levels from easy to a little tricky. Something for everyone in here from beginner level to those wanting something a little more challenging.
It really is a great addition to your crochet library and I’m sure it will be one you will refer back to often.
Would you love your very own copy of More Than a Granny? I’m running a little giveaway and will select one lucky reader to receive a special advance copy. Leave a comment and a random winner will be selected next week. In the meantime, you can find out more about the e-book and how to order your own copy over on Shelley’s blog here
Until next time