Name: Joanne Gross (just Jo to friends)
Business: The Handmade Nursery
Describe yourself in three words: Creative, dreamy, fanatical
What else should we know about you?I’m 33, I am a mum to one daughter (Fern 3 1/2) and stepdaughter to Lauren (15 1/2) I am married to Martin who I have known and loved for nearly 10 years. I had been all set to do a degree in illustration/typography when I became really ill at 19, and after that fell into a government job where I stayed for nearly 13 years. I was made redundant in Feb this year and so am having a go at something creative again which has always been my passion.
What do you do? I make knitted and fabric things for children and adults. Although i craft just about anything and very rarely stick to just one type of craft.
Why do you love it? I can be a fairly stressed out person and knitting/crafting is always guaranteed to calm me down. I can’t watch TV without some thing to make in my hands
Where do you get your inspiration? When studying art at college I was really taken with Pre-Raphaelite art and the whole Arts and Crafts movement, I adore William Morris and Edward Burne Jones. I love taking patterns from nature especially flowers.
Who has been one of your biggest influences? My mum obviously , she taught me to knit and sew. Also I have been attending a knitting group since early May 2011 and find the girls I meet there every week very inspiring. They have allowed me to find myself again after being a very befuddled mum. The group meets at Make Do and Mend (in Chelmsford Essex www.makedomend.com.) a wonderful place full of people doing workshops and selling our handmade things.
If you were stranded on a desert island, what three things could you not live without? Apart from my family (naturally) I would have to have my knitting with me, a sketchpad and a pencil
Where do you see yourself in ten years? I really don’t know! I would like to have taken the design side of my work further and as eventually I would love to design craft kits or have some designs made into crafter’s materials. I’ve always had an ambition to have something in print also so who knows a craft book….watch this space!
Anything else you just *have* to say? !? I’d like to urge people to buy handmade, its great to have thing which are different from the norm and unique. Also get making, Make Do and Mend! x