When life gets a bit stressful, putting together a new edition of ‘Exploring Etsy’ for all you lovely readers is a perfect remedy. There’s nothing quite like celebrating all that amazing crafty talent on Etsy for putting a smile back on your face, it certainly helps that in my humble opinion crafters are some of the kindest people out there. Today’s featured maker Candy Barnes is no exception, owner of not one but two fantastic Etsy shops ‘Candykins Crafts’ and ‘Heartful Stitches’. Today we’ll be taking a closer look at the wonderful ‘Heartful Stitches’.
Based in Brisbane, Australia Candy is a busy mum of three young children between 7 months and 5 years of age. She rediscovered her love of stitching when her second child was a baby and at the time launched her first shop ‘Candykins Crafts’. Her second shop ‘Heartful Stitches’ was born out of her desire to support a charitable organisation that had been incredibly helpful to her family when they were in hospital with their youngest child. Her little girl born, with multiple heart defects, required life-saving open heart surgery at just one week old. Thankfully after spending her first month in hospital she is now a happy and healthy baby giving her whole family joy on a daily basis! Twenty percent of the proceeds from each sale at ‘Heartful Stitches’ goes to HeartKids QLD, so not only can you treat yourself to stunning work you can also get a kick knowing that some of your money is going to a truly worthy cause.
What is your earliest stitching memory?
My Mum taught me to stitch when I was about 7 or 8 years old. I have wonderful memories of sitting by the fireplace with my mother and sisters, all of us stitching. While I look back on these memories with rose-coloured glasses, I’m sure there were plenty of arguments and dummy-spits over knots and tangles.
What fires your imagination?
Many of the designs for Heartful Stitches came out of a personal project that I am working on – a postage stamp quilt. It is my first attempt at making a quilt, and I am hand embroidering many one inch squares with designs that represent something of sentimental importance to our family. The cycling couple, lighthouse and french knot bouquet were designed in this way. Other pieces, like the impressionistic landscape were inspired by the beautiful, bold colours of nature. I love using variegated threads, and starting a piece without knowing what it is going to be and just seeing what develops as I add colours. I also love creating variety in texture by using different types of stitches. This kind of exploratory work can end up with a piece that I am not happy with, but I enjoy the process as much as the end result. I find it incredibly therapeutic.
‘Heartful Stitches’ is full of one of a kind or limited edition pendant necklaces that are all exquisite and full of joy. For something with that extra personal touch Candy can also custom stitch children’s artwork in a pendant for you!
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 new Etsy shop.