20 September 2012

A Conversation with Lucy of 'Lucy Patterson'

From craft kits to kimono printed tape and felt to russian doll cushions, Lucy Patterson's range of products is diverse and yet beautifully balanced.  Here, she shares a glimpse into her creative world...

Who is Lucy Patterson? 

I’m a designer, a blogger and Reiki teacher (Reiki is a kind of hands-on healing that originated in Japan). I live on top of a windy hill on the wild West Coast of Auckland with my man, my mum, two dogs, a cat, lots of chickens and a pig called Alice.

What’s your “handmade groove ?”

I combine graphic design, textile design, illustration, photography and various handcrafting techniques into a range of craft kits (‘Kimono Felt Craft’, ‘Sock Horse and Friends’ etc), Russian dolls and art cards. My current range borrows a lot from the patterns of my vintage kimono fabric collection. I’m also a compulsive photographer and love sharing images from my daily life, work and travels on my blog www.lucypatterson.com

What’s on your bedside table right now? (hey, no tidying up or censoring)

An ever-shifting cascade of books, magazines, notebooks and pens.

Who are your creative role models? What music, books, images, poetry spark your creative fire?

I love all of Australian stylist, Sibella Court’s books. I come back to them time and time again. I make very good use of the Auckland Libraries online requesting system (I usually have about 30 books out at anyone time, and another 30 on request!). I’ll get books on interiors, travel, craft, food, photography, blogging, design, illustration, fashion and gardening. I’m also addicted to magazines (some of my favourites are Frankie, Uppercase, Inside Out and Extra Curricular). Other sources of inspiration for me are: spending time with my creative friends, travel, going to markets and spending time in nature.

What could you talk late into the night about with like minded people?

Creative ideas and inspirations, travel stories, Reiki stories, love, life, the universe and interesting films or book.s!

If you could go to three free workshops/creative events this year which ones would they be? What are they about?

  1. One day I would love to go on on Squam Art Retreat (http://www.squamartworkshops.com/). I’ve read so much about them on various blogs that I follow. They look amazing.
  2. My graphic design skills are all self-taught, so I’d really like to do an advance Photoshop, Illustrator and Indesign course.
  3. An upholstery course so I can re-cover vintage furniture in some of the stunning fabrics I’ve brought back from my travels (vintage Moroccan rugs, Hill Tribe bedspreads from Vietnam…).

How do you balance your creative life with your family, life commitments?

That’s a constant work in progress! I’m fully self-employed, so my creative business and my Reiki teaching / treatment practice are not only how I make my living, but also how I live my life. I find they complement each other beautifully, but trying to find enough time to do everything that I want to do can be tricky!
I find it really important to try and set fixed slots each day and week that aren’t ‘work’. For example, I always give myself a full Reiki treatment each morning before I get up, I try to go for walks regularly, and I try to spend at least one evening a week catching up with friends and perhaps going to a film. I have to say that one of my biggest challenges is simply limiting the amount of time that I have to spend on the computer. My body and my computer are not friends!

What is your favourite creative screw-up?

My creative projects often turn out differently from how I originally imagined them. I guess it’s just how I work. I usually start with a clear concept, but I allow the form to develop out of the creative process and materials. I love it that there’s this sort of ‘magic element’ to creativity that I’m not actually in control of!

Kitchen table or studio?

Oh dear. Both! In fact, when I’ve got a really big project on, I pretty much take over the house. Studio, kitchen table, sofas, bed, floor… My loved ones put up with a lot.

Do you have a wish list? Can you tell us what’s on it?

We’re working towards building our own home on our family land out here at Bethells Beach. I’d love to publish a beautiful book some day. I’m always dreaming of new travel adventures! Next up is Rajasthan and back to Vietnam. Can’t wait!

 You can find Lucy Patterson products ... here.
And Follow on Facebook ... here

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