Karin has become a regular feature at the market and her lovely jewellery pieces are always popular. Learn a little about the woman behind the art!
Who are you and what do you do?
I'm Karin and I make jewellery from vintage brass pieces and all kinds of beads, charms and pendants.
How long have you been crafting and what is your first crafting memory or experience?
I have done something like this pretty much since I could sit up. I've always been into making things, drawing, writing, building, sewing, you name it. My whole childhood is more or less one big crafty memory, but one thing that stands out is the three-story mansion I built out of cardboard boxes for my Barbie doll when I was about eight or nine. It had a working elevator (shoe box, string), an oven that opened (macaroni box), walk-in wardrobes, stables, and a music room with a guitar made from a match box, an ice-block stick and sewing cotton.
What inspires you?
It's so not an original answer, but I have to say nature inspires me. My favourite pieces from my own range are the leaves and acorns, and I love wood and semi-precious stone and coral and bone and all those sorts of things. I like clean, simple forms and bold colours (like my coral branch pendants) but also quirky vintage things, things with some history to them, as long as they're not too sweet – I like things that have a bit of an edge.
What is the crafting achievement you are most proud of?
I'm pretty stoked to be making money, to tell you the truth. I'm not quite at the stage where I could pack in the day job, but I'm very happy that people want the things I design and make enough to pay actual money for them.
What item from the craft, art and design world would you most like for Christmas?
Ooohhh... there's so much to choose from! I would love some sort of padded travelling sleeve for my Macbook, and I've been on the hunt for a new leather kiss-lock purse for some time. It's hard to find the right size.
What is your favourite blog / book and food?
My favourite books are the Aubrey/Maturin series by Patrick O'brian, alongside anything by Tove Jansson. I don't spend a huge amount of time reading blogs but I like Crafting an MBA, The Creative Empire and Etsy's Success blog. I have a LOT of favourite foods, but if I had to pick one it would have to be chocolate, in any form.
Why buy handmade?
I think it's important to have contact with the people who make the things you use and love, it reminds us of the true value of possessions. People have become used to paying ridiculously low prices for everything, but the things they're buying aren't really cheap – someone somewhere is paying for it, through low wages and crappy working conditions and unsustainable materials and wasted resources and polluting transport. This is no secret, but it's easy to disregard it because you've never met any of the people affected, they're on the other side of the world and speak a different language.
When you are not at The Devonport Craft Market where can people buy your things?
I have people contacting me after almost every single Devonport Craft Market, and I love it – you shouldn't rush to buy anything. If you see something, and then find that you are still thinking about it a day or two later, that's when you know it's for you.