Mad Hatter Krafts

hats august 13 002Your name: Janet Steele

Tell us a little bit about what you do? 

Knitting, sewing, crochet and embroidery. I also enjoy silk painting and water colours, but I do not produce these for the craft stall.

How did it all start? 
I learned to knit and sew when I was five years old – my mother made all our clothes and I made dolls clothes from the remnants I started hand sewing, then I had a child’s Vulcan sewing machine for Christmas – I made dolls clothes, then rag dolls and teddies. I started making items to sell in aid of my children’s infant school.  The parents held a craft fair and between us We raised enough to buy them a computer Although it was another 25 years before I learned to use one.

What do you enjoy most about what you do?
I love trying out new designs – and hunting for yarn and fabric – I buy the fabric or yarn I like, and then decide what to make with it – could be hats, toys, or flowers.

hats august 13 004What motivates you? What inspires you?
I don’t know – I have just always knitted and sewed – its very relaxing.

What frustrates you?
Knitting for hours and finding I have done two left sides.

How and where do you sell your creations?
I sell at Craft Fairs – I know a lot of the other stallholders and love meeting up with them.

How do you promote your work?
On the Stamford Artisans website.

Any plans for expanding the business?
Not really – I do quite a lot of craft fairs and would struggle to produce Enough stock to expand.

What is the most important thing on your wish-list for your craft?
A computerised sewing/embroidering machine – though I would still use my 45 year old Elna which has never let me down.

hats august 2013 007Any advise you would like to give upcoming makers of your particular craft?
You have probably invested hours in your creation – Someone will appreciate that so don’t sell too cheaply!

Any thoughts you would like to share with all fellow crafters?
Don’t be put off by one (or two or three) bad days when you first start– you will find some places where your craft sells well, others not so good.

If you wanted to expand your set of skills or learn a new craft what would it be?
I would like to learn more computer skills (other people wish I would too).

Tell us about any craft events, exhibitions etc your are doing in the next 12 months.
Stamford, Oakham, Fineshade -

Do you sell through any retail outlets?

The best way to contact me is by the contact link above or by leaving a comment on this page.

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