Thursday, December 18, 2008

Interview with Rosemary Hill author of Elements of Style

I am thrilled to participate in the Blog tour of Rosemary Hill and her new book:
With a mix of convenient materials and an imaginative approach, this creative compendium will appeal to jewelry makers of all levels. Highlighting 25 modern wire, bead, and fiber jewelry designs, the projects include numerous knitting, crocheting, and felting techniques. Materials and tools are also outlined, encouraging the use of basic methods. From knitting copper wire and mixing it with contrasting beads to crocheting linen into fiber hoop earrings or an elegant scarf necklace, this collection will never fail to inspire. Felting techniques are also explored in detail for creating wire-caged beads, wide-cuff bracelets, and rope necklaces. Special sidebars and tip boxes throughout ensure success with every project.

We were invited to interview Rosemary and being me, most of my questions related to more of a "behind the scenes" nature. Such as my first question(which is always top on my list to know about other designers):

1. What does your workspace/design space look like?

Cluttered! But I love my work space. It has great light and comfy
chairs so people can hang out with me.

2. Do you save your mistakes/or designs you don't love right away-
or rip them out?

I think I am genetically unable to throw anything away! (see clutter
above). So yes, I try to recycle everything I can. I keep all of my
ideas and notes and drawings to look at later in case it jogs
something in my brain! I hate wasting things. In fact, I have a
project in my book: the "Mess-Up Necklace" that is made of recycled
wire swatches. Since I couldn't rip them out and re-knit or re-
crochet the wire, I balled them up and made a necklace out of them!
(Interviewer's note: I am so going to make this!!!!)

3. Do you design for only women or do you make decorations, or for

So far I've really only designed for women; it's what I feel most
comfortable with. According to my husband, I don't get the male
aesthetic! I like muted colors and a small clean scale, and it just
doesn't quite seem to translate. I am working on some decoration
patterns, though.

4. What's on your "next to try" list?

Weaving! I really really want to weave. A friend of mine wants to
loan me a loom, but I have no room for it!

5. Do you ever work with recycled materials?

Yes! I particularly love sea glass. I also often buy beaded jewelry
at sales and at thrift stores and take it apart to use the
components. I'm always on the look-out for good materials.

6. What music do you listen to when designing?

It really depends on my mood. I like almost everything except rap,
and I am hopelessly stuck in the 80s. I also love classical guitar. I
am always listening to something; music makes me happy!

7. How long does a design take you to create?

It's really hard to say. When I set out to design something, it's
always sort of there in the back of my mind while I'm doing other
things. So it might take weeks or hours, depending on how fast it
percolates through! If I am on deadline, I can whip out designs super
fast by going on a long bike ride (I know, weird, eh?). The knitting/
crocheting and writing them up is that part that takes all the time!

8. How do you organize your supplies?

Organize? I'm one of those people who keeps track of the stratum in
which each piece is buried, and who, upon cleaning and filing, can
never find a thing again!

9. What books/magazines do you read, specifically about style?

I read a huge variety of books, magazines and online sources dealing
with all sorts of design. My favorites are Wallpaper, The NY Times
Style Guide, Go Fug Yourself and Communication Arts. I like looking
at everything from the banal to the inspired!

10. How would you describe your personal style?

I love clean and classic and flowing lines. I'm not at all a frilly
person. I also tend not to follow fashion trends, although I am
influenced by them. I favor rich and muted colors like plum, greens
(particularly acid green), blacks and greys. My dream outfit is one
that is comfortable (I hate tight clothes!), is classic with a twist,
and could be worn in a casual or more dressy environment. And, I
admit, I love my Doc Martens!

11. How do you determine whether you are going to knit or crochet a

I go by how I think the material will behave and by the component

12. and the all important question (from Ravelry) what is your
favorite swear word?

I've given up swearing in the interest of my children's social
acceptability. :g:

13. Do you have a collection of anything? Different from knitting,
jewelry stuff.

Yes! I have a collection of vintage rhinestone jewelry. I love love
love the stuff! I actually used to wear it quite a bit in college,
and now I mostly take it out and gaze fondly upon it. ;) I went to
school in Rochester, NY and picked up some really great pieces there.

To read what other bloggers asked Rosemary about herself and her fabulous new book, check out these other blogs:

Dec. 15: Scout J,
Dec. 16: Heather Powers, Art Bead Scene,
Dec. 17: Stephannie Roy, And She Knits Too!,
Dec. 19: Cristi Brockway, Turtlegirl’s Bloggy Thing,

And on a final note, I am actually the proud owner of one of Rosemary's pieces! This was an exclusive design she did for Scout J (Dec 15th's Interviewer) I love my Martini sweater pin!
So if you are looking for a fun pin for your sweater or want to read and see more of Rosemary's talents be sure to pop on over to her neck of the cyber world here.

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