Exploring Etsy – Sophiapotshop & Tusk and Twine

Exploring Etsy with loadofolbobbins!

“I must check my calendar, I must check my calendar” *writes repeatedly on a chalk board*. For shame I have been a wee bit tardy in this month’s ‘Exploring Etsy’ column, there really is no excuse except an appalling inability to look at a calendar and realise what day it is. I’m hoping I can earn your forgiveness with part two of my embroidery hoop extravaganza. That’s right, I’ve got two more amazing embroiderers who have made the humble hoop their own. First up we have a relative newcomer to the world of stitch: Sophie Potter and her shop ‘sophiapotshop‘.

An illustrator and maker based in Cardiff, Sophie has recently started working in needlecraft and modern calligraphy alongside her main illustration work. She first began picking up embroidery around six months ago after being inspired at Simple Knots Craft Club, a monthly local social event that she runs where makers of all disciplines can come to practice their crafts together. Meeting loads of other artists, and having the opportunity to pick other peoples brains about how to get started, really inspired Sophie to turn her hand to embroidery. Although having concentrated in black and white with her illustrations, embroidery has really given her a chance to experiment with her love of colour.

What is your earliest stitching memory?

This is tricky! I’m so new to embroidery, that I don’t have a super memorable stitching memory. I’ve always loved embroidered clothes but it’s only been in the last year that I’ve really explored embroidery for myself.

What fires your imagination?

Nature, good design, and other people’s enthusiasm. I love sharing skills with other makers and getting inspired together. My current embroidery crushes are Tessa Perlow and Yumiko Higuchi – lots of bold florals and pattern.

Sophie’s intricate and delicate embroideries are stunning and I for one can’t wait to see what more wonders she has in store for us, make sure to visit and favourite her shop to keep up to date. Next up we have the wonderful work of Kate Beardmore in her shop ‘Tusk and Twine‘.

Kate lives in a rural town with her very supportive fiancé and fur baby, Yui the Springer Spaniel. Tusk and Twine was created as an outlet for her passion for textiles and design. A self-taught embroidery artist Kate uses her background in graphic design to help create one of a kind embroideries. She loves the versatility of creating art using a needle and thread, which suits her eclectic style, often changing technique and colours. She really enjoys the simplicity and rawness of using her hands to create and the time spent stitching calms her busy mind and is very peaceful. A lot of her inspiration comes from adventures in the wilderness.

What is your earliest stitching memory?

My earliest memories of stitching are with my mother, her teaching me to cross stitch as a way of filling time during the school holidays; I think I started at 8 or 9. I used to make cross stitch Christmas and Mother’s Day cards but I wasn’t the most patient stitcher as a child!

What fires your imagination?

My biggest source of imagination is nature’s flora and fauna. The colours, sounds and textures appeal to me and I try to re-create a version of nature in my embroideries.

Kate’s work is wonderfully crisp and fresh and you can’t help but fall in love with her bold designs. Treat yourself to a few minutes to bask in her glorious stitching by visiting her shop. Until we meet again my needlecraft friends I shall bid you adieu.


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.