Meet Ingrid from BookBeads and Felted Fellows
Where did you come up with your brand name?
I needed something self explanatory for the book markers that wasn’t already taken and found BookBeads fit the bill. Felted Fellows came later, I was brainstorming a name for the line of felted dogs I had started , only I didn’t want to be committed to just dogs as I knew in the future that may change. My neice came up with Felted Fellows and I realised it was a perfect fit for all manner of felted animals!
When did you begin making and what was your inspiration?
A good five years ago my sister saw some beaded bookmarks in Australia and suggested I try them out here. Searching online and through other markets I couldn’t find anyone doing any similar so began my version. The choice of glass beads most definitely inspired me with their vibrant colours and shapes and I find every marker differs from the other as a consequence.
Felted Fellows started with an article in the UK interiors magazine that a friend at work pointed out. After going to the library and finding book after book on how to needle felt, the little dogs found their way into my heart!
What do you make?
The beaded bookmarks differ from most as they are secured to an elasticated band that is wrapped around the book, with the bling of beads resting on the outside.
Felted fellows started out as only dogs. I found the wire haired terriers, and schnauzers the most fun and popular to make, but make a range of other breeds too. Every now and then I will branch out to an Afghan Hound or a Great Dane to spice things up. Am often asked to make cats, but despite having my own cat as a model have yet to take that on!
Just recently I have started a range of birds in bauble shape, with the mind to have a range of christmas tree decorations up and running soon.
Who has been the most influential in your craft?
I think it all stems from growing up with a pretty artistic and creative family. I was always encouraged and as a consequence have never come across something I thought I coudn't do. That drive meant I always tried a new skill, sometimes that wouldnt work out as well as I hoped, but I knew there would be something that I would try next that I would be happy with.
What inspires you?
I am constantly in awe of the talent of those around me, in markets and online. I work at Auckland Art Gallery and I find in my line of work inspiration is always around the corner with the next exhibition.
What is your most treasured handmade possession?
My Dad is a photographer and I have a number of his earlier black and white photos that I particularly love. My sister does splendid ceramic sculptures, I only have a few smaller ones though as her larger pieces (of which I would love to have!) are just too heavy for me to bring over from Australia!
I did a course way back when, of bronze sculptures in the lost wax process, which I am proud of and wish I had the time and money to start up again.
When you are not making what do you do?
I am a paintings conservator at Auckland Art Gallery. The gallery has 5 conservators overall, and we all specialise in specific areas, Works on paper, Objects and Paintings. Our primary role is to care for the collection but we also have private service available to members of the public.
What is your favourite book?
Hard call, possibly 'Its all Fun and Games until Someone loses an Eye' by Christopher Brookmyer.
And your favourie food?
Any Thai food
Where do you get your online inspiration from?
I don’t really follow any blogs or specific sites, I find I am a bit of a google fiend though and will follow where any search takes me.
What music is on high rotate on your ipod?
I’m pretty eclectic when it comes to music, but I find I’m going through an extended phase of listening to my older stuff, so a lot of Billy Joel, Pink Floyd, James Taylor and Elkie Brooks.
When you are not at the Devonport Craft Market, where can people buy your work?
I have the Felted Dogs on Felt.co.nz under FeltedFellows,
I also sell them at Tessuti on Jervois Rd, Ponsonby and in Newmarket.
I can also be found at Craft Harvest in Parnell, but all my works have email addresses and people can find me at them too.