Crochet entrepreneurs: A Little Doolally

Date: 18th May 2016 | Category: News


Designer Amy Astle chats about passion, patterns and parenting.
www.littledoolally.com

Amy Astle is a crochet designer who lives “in a little house on a hill” in Nottinghamshire with her husband and their two young children. She selfpublishes her patterns, which she then sells through Ravelry, Etsy, Craftsy, LoveCrochet and allcrochetpatterns.net.
Amy’s design journey began at a young age, when she first discovered crochet. “I was around 10 years old when my Grandmother bought me some old craft books from a jumble sale,” she says. “They had all sorts of crafts in them like embroidery, knitting, dressmaking and crochet. I had a go at crochet and never looked back!”

Amy went on to do a degree in Textiles, cementing her love of “fabrics, buttons and textures” before finding her niche as a pattern designer.
Of course, self publishing means that you don’t just have to design the pattern – you also have to do all the other bits and pieces that turn a finished design into a professional pattern that people can buy, as well as promoting and marketing your designs. “I do all my own work
including photography, sourcing materials and blog work – all while being a full-time mum,” she says.

Amy’s typical day is a combination of crochet work and full-time parenting. “I spend the morning with my babies, going on play dates, taking them to a local museum or to the park,” she explains. “Then after lunch it’s nap time for them and crochet time for me! I do most of my work while they sleep in the afternoon or in the evening.” It’s a familiar combination with crochet designers, finding the small bits of freetime in amongst the parenting to create a crafty career that can coexist with young children. It’s hard work, but can often provide the best of both worlds.

A browse through Amy’s designs reveals a gorgeous collection of colourful blankets and fun intarsia cushions, including some very on trend woodland creatures designs, all worked in a soft and recognisable colour palette. “My baby blankets are probably the most popular, however my intarsia designs are a very close second,” she says. And her design philosophy is simple: “I design from my heart, not from my head. I always think the most important thing is to design something you are passionate about, and something that you would love to own yourself. I am a very visual person and love making creations that I invent in my mind. I also love putting colours and images together to give a particular ‘feel’.”

As for the future, Amy is happy to carry on as she is. “I already have lots of plans for more patterns. I would love to work more on building my portfolio of designs and continue to develop my own unique style.” We look forward to seeing what she comes up with next!


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