Chatting with Louise Crowther, author of My Knitted Doll
We were so taken with Louise Crowther’s book My Knitted Doll, that we cheekily asked Louise if she would be interested in talking to us. Happily, Louise was completely on board and more than happy to answer a few questions.
Can you tell us a little about yourself?
I am originally from Yorkshire, but now live in a quaint little town in Northamptonshire with my lovely husband and two sons.
I have always had a love of fabric and colour and have been involved with textile design all my working life, starting my career as a Jacquard designer, creating elaborate, woven cloth designs for the corporate market and high street fashion retailers.
About six years ago I took the leap into working from home. My love of textiles and knitting have lead me to where I am now designing, knitting and running my small business Boo-Biloo.
Have you always been creative and when did you first learn to knit?
I love creating things, and to be able to work out how to design something, then passing over that knowledge in a pattern or design gives me a real buzz.
My love of knitting started about 10 years ago when my eldest son came home from primary school saying he wanted to learn how to knit. So I bought a book, some yarn and some needles and we both learned (well actually, I learned how to knit, he got fed up after a few days, and was on to the next thing…..playing the drums, but luckily by then I was well and truly hooked)!
You like to design small, neat projects, what do you enjoy most about working on a smaller scale?
Ever since I was little I’ve always been drawn to small, cute, quirky little objects.
My ideas always seem to come out as small and quirky and I love to experiment with colours, which is perfect for toys and little decorations. Smaller designs are much more fun to make and unlike knitting clothing you don’t need to worry about whether they are going to fit you or not.
We love some of the garments you’ve designed for your dolls. If you could have one item sized up for you, which would it be?
Probably Penny’s dress…….I like how the simplicity of the grey and cream stripes with just a little pop of colour contrasts with the pretty lace frill.
Where did the inspiration for your characters come from, are they based on people you know?
Some of them are loosely based on people I know, or a combination of people, and some on me. I imagine their character as I design the doll pattern and clothing. I get my inspiration from everything and everyone around me. I like to “people watch” so whenever I’m out and about character traits stay with me. I hope no one recognises themselves
Which one is your favourite?
That’s a hard one! Designing them has been such a big part of my life this year, I am very attached to them all, but if I really had to choose one it would be Martha. I love her outfit and her little red shoes are so cute.
Do you have any other hobbies/interests that you like to do when you’re not knitting?
Gosh that’s a tough one! My love of design and knitting takes up all my spare time. I am constantly collecting ideas and colour combinations so I suppose you could say that colour collecting is a hobby.
I also have a secret hobby of finding (and buying) the right yarn for the right project. I am sure that many of your readers will admit to that one too…
We’ve noticed that you’ve recently been knitting a three Colour Shawl by Joji Locatelli and a Westbourne sweater by Isabell Kraemer, which designers inspire you most?
I have always been inspired by Lucinda Guys, her quirky style and use of colour appeals to me.
Being a designer you are always looking out for new designers, we all seem to feed off of each other. Each one of us has their own style and technique, so we are all probably combining everything we see and incorporating them into our new designs.
It’s obvious you love colour, which would you include in a palette of your favourites at the moment?
I don’t think I could pick my favorite palette, in the spring it would be fresher colours, the autumn another. My mood also influences the colours I choose.
I am loving the greys and plum colours at the moment, but next month who knows….
What are your plans for the future, are you allowed to tell us what you’re working on now?
Now that would be telling….
I don’t really like to plan ahead too much, I tend to just take each day as it comes. I have loads of ideas and designs running through my head, so who knows where the next inspiration will take me. But of course you and my fans will be the first to know….
Thank you so much for chatting to us. We look forward to seeing what 2017 has in store for you and wish you every success with your book. Please know that we’d love to catch up with you, if you’re ever in Ireland.
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