Apparently, the summer of 2017 is a blink and you miss it affair in Britain – fluffy socks in August, I ask you! While the sun is playing coy over here, our fabulous designer makers aren’t. There’s nothing I like better than vibrant and witty designs and what better place to champion them than at Mr X Stitch, the home of all things bold and beautiful. While we all await our copies with eager anticipation, I’m hoping that this month’s featured needlecrafter can stave off some of those Mr X Stitch magazine cravings…at least for a while. Once again unto the breach dear friends, I venture forth into the wilds of Etsy and present you with the delights of Robin Soutar and his marvellous shop ‘Son of a Cross Stitch’.
An ex-accountant living in Leith, Scotland with a cat – somewhere around the place – and another human, Robin has been cross-stitching for almost two years and running ‘Son of a Cross Stitch’ for about fifteen months. Very much a newbie to the crafting scene, he’s found it a great new community to be part of, only wishing he’d found it sooner – better late than never I always say! Robin’s a lifelong gamer, (just not very good at it), and was brought up to understand the importance of good music and good drink. He thinks swearing is big and clever, and tattoos make boring skin a lot more interesting. “I make what I like and like what I make, and mostly it seems to make people happy. Life can get a bit real at times, so crafting is a great form of escapism. Getting to find new ways to swear is mostly a bonus.”
What is your earliest stitching memory?
Probably making a cross stitch tree ornament when in Primary School, (about 7 or 8 years old), and also a brooch around the same age for my Grandma of her dog. After that, and some uninspired Home Economics lessons at the start of High School, I hadn’t touched a needle for almost 2 decades. Then I found out I was going to be an uncle and wanted to do something special. Not understanding the skills required, (that I lacked), I decided to make my neicephew, (gender was not yet known), a handmade bear incorporating our family tartan. It took a few attempts, but a family heirloom was eventually created as well as a love of stitching. I still have the first attempt on my shelf to remind me of what started this all off – it has purple fur, green eyes, and will most likely eat me in my sleep one day.
What fires your imagination?
I shamelessly steal from/am inspired by, the music I listen to, the games I’m playing, and the films and TV I’m watching. If that fails me, I usually find some brilliant ideas after the fourth drink, though they’re not always as brilliant in the morning. For the patterns and kits that I sell, my main motivation is to put down something that makes me smile, that I would be happy with brightening up a nook on a wall or desk. I also like to see what can be done differently, and have recently made a small line of hand stitched designs on 12″ vinyl records. Combining power tools and thread has been a lot of fun, and the end results have looked even better than I hoped….also, Batman.
Let us all raise our needles in a virtual guard of honour and give Robin a hearty Mr X Stitch welcome, maybe even wander over to his shop and treat yourself to one of his rather wonderful and highly amusing kits. I can’t think of a better way to banish gloom than with a great big dose of witty cross stitch! For those who have yet to order their precious copy of the Mr X Stitch magazine you can do so here. Until next time chums…
Jessica Taylor aka Loadofolbobbins is a Textile Artist and Illustrator based by the sea in Portsmouth. At her happiest with a needle and thread, with a passion for genealogy she often explores old photographs in her textile art. With her fingers in many creative pies she loves to experiment with new techniques, creating illustrated and stitched goodies for her Etsy shop.