About a thousand years ago (okay, 1987-1989…so not *quite* a thousand, but getting close) I studied for a Visual Arts degree. I didn’t complete it, but I’ve always been very good at art, and quite a dab hand at crafting. I’ve been crocheting since I was 10, and knitting about the same length of time – in the past 2 years I’ve taken up crafting a lot more seriously because my husband was out of work, and I needed to make a bit of “pin money” .
My shop name, “Hats Outrageous!” came about because I needed a name at the Summer Fair put on by my kids’ primary school last year. I already had a reputation for selling hats, and so I made a play on the words “That’s Outrageous!”. I’m a bit bored with it, particularly as I don’t only make hats, but I guess once the cooler weather starts approaching I’ll feel a bit more comfortable about the name!
I’m a full-time wife and mother – while my husband was out of work I looked for office jobs, but art is my first love, and I decided if I was going to earn some money it would be on my own terms, not working “for the man”, so to speak. I *do* work one hour a week typing and proofreading for a man in the next suburb who’s writing a book; it doesn’t pay much but again, it’s on my terms, and it fits in well around the kids. I also taught crochet last half term to a group of lovely ladies – not quite sure how much they retained, but we had a lot of fun – I was going to do it again this half-term but I’ve not got around to it yet – I’ll probably give it another go after the May half-term hols.
If someone wrote a biography about you, what do you think the title should be?
Hmmm… ”If Life is a Bowl of Cherries, What am I Doing in the Pits?”
I’m an Australian ex-pat, so a lot of the shows which were my faves as a child won’t be familiar to UK readers, but the one which holds the most long-lasting memories for me would have to be Doctor Who. I was haunted for about 30 years by a nightmare of shop dummies which could move around and shoot people – it never occurred to me that it was a Doctor Who memory until one day I bought a copy of “Spearhead from Space” – I must have been ooh, I don’t know, 4 or 5 when I saw that! Proof that television can be bad for you…ha ha!
How do you promote yourself?
I feel like I’m everywhere! I have a fanpage on Facebook (although they’re not strictly “fan” pages anymore, are they!):
…Oh – could I mention here too, I’m raising money to send my daughter to the World Scouting Jamboree in Sweden next year – all money I make from selling my things goes to her fund – she has a Facebook fan page.
I’m also a member of UK Handmade, which is a lovely site.
What couldn’t you do without?
Easy – my husband and 4 kids… although sometimes (for instance, a wet Sunday morning…) could do with a little more “me” time!
What’s your favourite or most inspirational place?
I’m not sure I have any one favourite place – I like castles and gardens and ooh, Britain! I’m not sure if it’s just because I’m originally from the other side of the world, and although I’ve been here 5 years I’m still not quite over my “awestruckedness”, but I think that Britain must certainly be the most wonderful place on earth.
Apart from Rome…
Just go for it, and if it doesn’t work, try again! Nobody’s the same as everyone else. The second best piece of advice? Only clean the windows you look out of.
What question would you like to ask to yourself? And then answer it if you can!
Q. What will you be doing in 10 years time? A. Crafting and selling full time, from a converted outbuilding studio, somewhere in the Kent countryside, surrounded by my family.
THANK YOU LISA for taking part in The Sock Garden Q&A. I hope you manage to find time to start up the crochet teaching classes again and lots of luck with the Sweden fundraising trip!
Why not head on over to Lisa’s Folksy shop Hats Outrageous! to see her full selection of bags, brooches, bunting, buttons and more.