Hi there! My name is Steph. I was born and raised in Utah, then moved to Denver six years ago. You may know me from Makes the Things, but I also own Native Clutter, a jewelry line, and started Do Good Craft Club, a monthly meet-up to collect donations for local non-profits. I'm also a helicopter mom to my sphinx kitty, Baby Tiger Prince Chicken Butt.
Tell us a little about your creative self. What inspires you to create?
I'm a process knitter, so my inspiration for that comes from complex designs and challenges. I think that's why I'm always knitting elaborate socks. They take a while and the end result is so fulfilling for me.
With sewing, inspiration comes more out of necessity. Like, realizing I need a sweatshirt or bathing suit, etc. I generally choose instant gratification projects, but would like to take the time to make pants (want some Emerson's REAL bad) and a coat (Sapporo is at the top of my list).
Tell us about the person/people who taught you to do what you do.
My mom taught me to sew on the Husqvarna that she bought when she was pregnant with me! I remember being, like, eight years old attempting to make doll clothes and bags. I appreciate so much that she let me have free rein. I remember breaking needles and using her fabric scissors on paper. (So sorry mom!!!) I didn't get back into sewing until my early 20's. I took pattern making and intermediate sewing in college which helped build my skill set immensely.
My paternal grandmother taught me to knit when I was young, but again, I didn't get back into it until I was older. My mom found a lady through her church that was willing to teach me after I expressed interest in pursuing it again. I'm forever grateful to Flo for her patience and for teaching me my most favorite hobby. Knitting will always be my first love.
How do you identify most? An artist, a maker, a craftsperson, etc.
Definitely as a maker. I feel like all of my design creativity goes into my business, so it's nice to just follow someone else's instructions while sewing or knitting and make something beautiful!
What is the one thing you are most proud of from this year? Honestly, this year has been a tough one. I lost my dad quickly and unexpectedly to cancer seven months ago, and I've been in a fog ever since. I'm just recently knitting and sewing again after a hiatus. I even bought a tv last month (I haven't had one in years) and told myself, 'you can be sad in bed with your cat or you can be sad on the couch, knitting, and watching shows with your cat.' The latter felt like a step towards normality. So I think I'm the most proud of getting back to the things that I love. It's been really therapeutic.
Do you like to plan out your upcoming projects or do you wait for inspiration to strike?
Both! I'm an impulsive yarn and fabric buyer, but I also collect patterns and find a lot of inspiration through social media. Sara (@anelementallife) and I exchange texts almost daily about new patterns or fabric finds. I have a Pinterest board of RTW inspiration and a separate board for actual patterns.
Between sewing, knitting and jewelry making, you seem to do it all! Are there any crafts/skills you are still hoping to tackle?
YES! I just bought supplies so I can learn to macrame! I would also like to learn how to weave and embroider and quilt. So yes, all of them. Ha.
What does your creative space look like?
Right now my sewing area is clean, but it's usually a complete disaster area. I'm not an organized person. My knitting I miraculously seem to keep contained.
I like sewing at night with podcasts or Venture Bros on in the background. I'll squeeze in knitting all throughout the day. Knitting in the morning with my coffee is a pretty magical time.
What is your favorite thing about Denver?
The community. Hands down. I have met so many incredible people through my hobbies and business and just existing in this little big city. And people here are so willing to support small businesses and help those in need. Do Good Craft Club was started just because we were all getting together to knit/embroider/color/drink beer/hang out anyway. I was like, OK now everyone bring some canned goods or tampons too. We've been taking a carload of supplies to The Gathering Place monthly.
It's also crazy how many people I've met here through social media. Instagram doubles as my friend finder. "Oh you knit and have cats? Let's get coffee!"
Thank you for sharing all your inspirational makes and beautiful creative space with us Steph! To keep up with Native Clutter, The Do Good Craft, and Steph on social media, check out the links below!