I'm super excited for this week's Designer Spotlight post! This post is all about Julie of Jules Loves Yarn. I first got in touch with Julie when she helped to test my camera pattern last year. I've been following her work ever since and I'm a huge fan of her of her beautiful patterns. She is an extremely talented crochet designer (and photographer!) who specializes in trendy accessories. If you haven't seen her work yet, you have to go check it out ASAP! You can start by reading through her interview below and taking a peek at some of her work. And don't forget to read until the end, because Julie's been kind enough to offer a pattern coupon code for you all!
How long have you been crocheting/knitting?
I started crocheting when I was 19 (I am now 37), so 16 years!! I attempted knitting in my early 20s and though I loved how it looked (and the stretch!), I am simply not patient enough and ended up with too many unfinished projects. Maybe some day I will give it another try!
How did you learn to crochet?
I learned from tutorials in books (there was no YouTube or internet resources at that time).
What’s something you wish you had known when you’d first started crocheting?
Like all things, you will just keep getting better with time. Be gentle on yourself when you are starting out or learning a new stitch or pattern. Practice makes perfect!
And, loosen up!! It has taken me YEARS to get my gauge down (and I still crochet fairly tight)!!
What is your favorite thing about crocheting?
Being able to take it with me (its portability)! I love making things - I believe that a day without crafting/creating is not much of a day at all! So, as a Mom of busy little people (and someone who is often on the go), I love being able to take my projects and work on them while my kids are at gymnastics, karate, guitar…. As a bonus, I have made some amazing friends by crocheting at my kids activities and finding wonderful like-minded ladies!!
Is there a certain type of pattern you love to design the most? Why?
I love making hats because they are something that can be easily modified (size wise) and in the climate we live in, they are a necessity. They are also generally quick to work up, which is important for me, as I have “crochetDHD" (also known as NO project attention span)! ;) You don’t want to know how many single mittens and socks I have kicking around!!
I also REALLY love making newborn/baby items (I am a photographer as well and love creating sweet hats or rompers for photoshoots).
When you’re creating new designs, is there something that inspires you? What’s your muse?
It depends on the season and what is going on in our lives, but rich textures and colors are usually how my designs begin. I have a crochet stitch encyclopedia that I spend hours looking through for texture inspiration as well.
What do you think is the most challenging aspect of designing?
The math!!! I love math and definitely have a knack for numbers, but calculating repeats and making sure stitch counts are correct can be very tricky at times. I am very fortunate to have an amazing group of testers who are thorough and help make sure that my patterns are clear, correct and easy to follow before I release them.
I’m sure it’s impossible to pick just one, but is there one project that you’re particularly proud of?
That is a tough one!! Each of my designs hold a special place in my heart, but I think that the Endless Summer Boho Bag tops my list. It was definitely the most challenging pattern I have written because of all of the row counts, but I had a vision for this one and am still very happy with how it turned out. With the addition of the Boho Feather, it was exactly what I wanted it to be! The Rainbow Star Tote and Cupcake Puff Hat would be VERY close seconds!!
What advice would you pass along to other crocheters?
Make what you love and take pictures of your creations along the way! There is nothing more satisfying than looking back and seeing the wonderful creations you have made (and often, how much your work has improved over time). And if you start making something and you do not like - frog it! Life is too short to work on projects you do not enjoy!!
I want to thank everyone SO much for your support over the past 2 years. Each time I receive notification that I have sold a pattern, it makes my heart happy! I am so blessed to be able to stay home with my children while still contributing to our family income, doing something I love.
Thank you so much for sharing your crochet story and your gorgeous pictures with us, Julie! If you want to see more of her work, you can find her on Ravelry. And, if you want to purchase her patterns, Julie's generously offering a Ravelry coupon code for you all! If you use the code "cookie" (without the quotes) and add 2 or more patterns to your cart, you'll get 50% off of ALL patterns. Awesome, right? The coupon code expires Monday, March 12th so don't want to miss it. You can also follow Jules Loves Yarn on Facebook. She has a gorgeous new hat pattern that you'll definitely want to see.
Thank you for stopping by to visit my own personal corner of the web! Feel free to take a look around and check out what I've been crafting, crocheting, or baking. Hopefully you'll find something to inspire your own creativity!