“IT’S A HUGE COMPLIMENT WHEN SOMEONE WANTS SOMETHING YOU’VE MADE IN THEIR HOME”
moths to highlight the loss of creatures you wouldn’t necessarily think of as being endangered. One of the most spectacular moths I’ve made was the Urania Sloanus, which sadly became extinct in the early 1900s. I studied images of museum specimens to create that one but ideally I like to use images of moths in their natural habitats.
DO YOU HAVE ANY PLANS TO EXPAND THIS IDEA TO OTHER INSECTS? I’ve started a folder of other bugs that I’d like It has a few beetles and spiders in it so far. I’ve definitely got something to move on to if I get bored of moths. I’ll probably do some butterflies too as I’ve already had a few requests.
WE’VE NOTICED A REAL MOVEMENT OF CRAFT ARTISTS RECREATING INSECTS IN KNITTING, SEWING, CROCHET AND MULTIMEDIA. WERE YOU INSPIRED BY ANYONE? I made a giant moth out of a moth eaten shawl I darned back together and used tiny moths to holes. I was definitely influenced by the visible mending work of textile artists Celia Pym and Tom Of Holland for that piece. I’m also inspired by the innovative designs of Felt Mistress aka Louise Evans, particularly her gorgeously vivid felt beetles. which fill the
WHAT’S THE FEEDBACK BEEN ON YOUR MOTHS? Very positive. Not long after I started making them I was offered an exhibition at Prick Your Finger, a yarn store in London that regularly shows the work of textile artists. It gave me an incentive to create lots of different species, all of which were knitted using 100% Shetland Wool. I framed them and labelled them with their common and scientific names so it had the atmosphere of a natural history museum. I really enjoyed showing them as a collection. Peoople were interested to find out about the different moths and it was exciting to sell some of thhem. It feels like a huge compliment when someeone wants to have something you’ve made in their hoome.
SOCIAL MEDIA IS SUCH A BIG PLAYER WHENW IT COMES TO PROMOTING YOUR CRAFT TS. DO YOU FIND TIME TO POST ONLINE? Hardly any time at all but it can be useful whenw I need to put information online immediately. I post a lot more on Instagramgram asa I prefer picturess to words, plus it is much quicker!
WHAT OTHER KNITTED ITEMS DO YOU SELL IN YOUR SHOP? Handmade knitting, crochet and craft-themed jewellery. I spend a lot of my time making miniature knitting needles and balls of yarn. The mini knitting earrings are always very popular. I also sell greetings cards of the moths and other knitted creatures including The Knitting Octopus. He’s one of my most well known designs and I also have the pattern for sale so people can knit their own.
WHERE DO YOU CREATE YOUR KNITTED MOTHS? I design and knit all my moths at a desk in the corner of my living room, although I’m considering moving my work into a studio before my yarn takes over the entire flat. My boyfriend Jon has been very tolerant to the mess so far but I don’t want to push my luck! I’m always listening to or watching something while work. I alternate between Radio 6 Music and Netflix. I