8 questions with Zoe Bateman - "Push yourself outside of your comfort zone"
3 min read time
What inspires you to pick up your hooks/needles the most?
Earlier this year I was diagnosed with ADD, so I am always looking for the next shiny new project to work on to give me that dopamine boost. That moment of ‘oh wow how cool is that I must make it’ is probably what motivates me to start something new! I never have a problem with getting inspired to start something new - the hard part for me is actually finishing a project (anyone else have a graveyard of projects that just need joining together, or just need the ends weaving in?!)
Which colour palettes do you prefer?
I’m definitely a ‘pastel brights’ fan! Lilac, bubblegum pink, mint green, and a lemon yellow are my absolute favourites. Sometimes I wish I was better at branching out and trying new colour combinations - I love teaching granny square crochet classes as the colours people put together are so good, and usually totally different from what I would pick. But whenever I try using a different colour palette I end up thinking ’this would look much better if it was in a pastel colour’ so now I’ve stopped pushing myself too hard! Instead I just try to add in a slightly different colour every so often to mix things up.
Do you have a preference when it comes to yarn weight and fibres?
Ooooh I think it really depends on the type of project. As I make a lot of blankets and cushions I tend to go for acrylic or cotton yarns, as they can be washed more easily and can stand up to being sat on/chucked about. Although I probably use DK weight yarn the most, I do love a chunky or super chunky yarn with a nice big hook. There’s something so satisfying about working on a larger scale, and how quickly you can complete a project (all about those instant gratification crochet projects over here!)
Where do you do your best crafting?
Last month I moved into a new studio which is VERY exciting. My old studio was our spare room and it was just way too small for the amount of craft supplies I have! Having a bigger workspace has been an absolute game changer as I have room for all my supplies, as well as space for content creation, crafting, prop-making etc. But I am still definitely a ‘crochet in bed watching TV shows’ type of crafter, and I don’t think that will ever change. It’s nice now though having a separate studio so I know that when I leave there I am finished working, so I don’t feel guilty about spending a few hours crocheting in the evening whilst I watch Aussie Gold Diggers (don’t come for me, it’s great!)
Which projects are you more proud of?
That’s a tough one! My crocheted blanket collection is probably what I’m most proud of - they all have so many memories attached to them, from the time I was working on them. If my house was on fire I’d be throwing my crochet blankets out of the window to save them! Although most of them aren’t particularly exciting/difficult pattern, they represent a lot of time and love in each stitch, and I always feel very proud seeing them all together.
What's your dream for your crafty future?
Well, my dream has always been to have an amazing studio to work in, so I guess now I need to find a new crafty dream! I’d love to just continue what I’m doing really. Write some more craft books, work with more amazing brands, host more workshops, do lots more crafting….
What's your perfect piece of advice for crafters?
Never stop learning! I’ve been crafting and making things for as long as I can remember, and there are still so many new things to learn. Push yourself outside of your comfort zone, try new things, experiment, and don’t worry if it doesn’t work out because you’ll have learnt something along the way.
You are a master of all crafts, which ones are your favourites? What is there left to try?
Haha, definitely not a master of all crafts - which is probably a good thing as imagine how many more supplies I’d need to own?! My favourite craft is my OG love, crochet. As many crafts as I’ve tried, I always come back to crochet. It’s like a comfort blanket, and I love always having a project on the go that I can work on whenever I have time.
My other favourites are probably punch needle and stitching - I’m definitely more likely to get into crafts that are portable and don’t involve too much precision! I’m so envious of people who make their own clothes, but as much as I enjoy sewing I don’t have the patience or the precision to do dressmaking.There aren’t really any completely new crafts I’d like to try right now, but I’d love to make more time to experiment with my current crafts - seeing how I can use them in new ways, learn new techniques, and try combining them to create totally new things.
You can find Zoe on instagram @toocutecrafting.