Recently I have been asked to be apart of a few book tours and am so pleased to feature this one first! Countryside Softies is an adorable new book by Amy Adams. There is definitely something for everyone in this book! I did a little interview with Amy and we will be doing a giveaway as well. Leave a comment about your favorite critter and we will choose a winner on May 5th. Until then, enjoy!
S- What inspired this book?
AA- When I was asked by C&T to submit a book proposal, I pretty much had free reign on the subject. The first idea i pitched was Countryside Softies, never expecting it to be so well received. The idea originated mainly with the Badger. When I designed and made the Badger it just came together so easily that it fed the idea for a whole book of countryside animals.
S- What was your biggest surprise or lesson you learned during the publishing process?AA- Biggest surprise (or shock!) was when I lost the whole of the first section after finishing writing it. I was copying all my files from our old (and failing) emac to my new imac via our Apple time capsule, when the time capsule died. Turns out, it died due to a know manufacturing fault, and has since been replaced by Apple, so I now have the original first section back. So, I guess the lesson learned was back up your work, back it up again and back it up some more!
S- What are some of your favorite fabric shops or places you find great fabric?AA- Charity shops. Most of my fabrics come from thrifted old clothes. If I buy new fabrics, it's generally online from Superbuzzy or Etsy.
S- One thing I love about your book is that if you have small scraps left over from a project...and/or you have a hard time getting rid of small pieces of fabric (ahem), you can incorporate them into these adorable little critters. I was curious if some of these projects came about simply because you wanted to use small fabric scraps which inspired these various critters?AA- It's more about being inspired by making crafting come across as an affordable hobby. I worked for 12 years designing craft kits for Coats Crafts UK where the whole industry is depending on a continued influx of new people into the world of crafting. But in this day and age of recession, it's important to show that taking up a hobby as a form of escapism needn't cost much, and that a few basic items and skills are all that are needed to create something unique. When putting together craft kits within manufacturing, it's all down to cost and squeezing the most from what you buy in and leaving very little waste. The small, precious qualities of the animals fit the bill perfectly.
S- Speaking of fabric and fabric collections. What's yours like? What's your studio space like? (can you send a photo?)AA- My fabric collection is quite small. As most of my work is miniature, I don't need, or have the space for a huge amount of supplies. A couple of years ago, for fun, i actually made a film of my studio space and posted it on You Tube, http://www.youtube.com/
S- I was reading your interview on Blue Nickel Studio and how you have a desire to make a pinecone but shy away from it because there have been a lot of exceptional ones made. I had a bit of a creating slump when I opened Schmancy and saw so many amazing things and just got intimidated and shy. How do you fight that urge not to try even though you want to make something and yours will undoubtedly have your own style? How do you get your crafting mojo back when you are in a slump?AA- I get in crafting slumps all the time. It is hard to be creative 24/7, somedays it flows and others the well runs dry! I tend to take a break, flick through some books, blog hop online, then also look through my own work at what has worked and what hasn't. That tends to help get the creating moving again. I will make a pinecone, and you are right, it will be a pinecone the same as others out there, but there'll also be a little quirk of design in there which makes it mine.
S- Cake or pie?
AA- Cake. Chocolate cake in particular. With whipped cream. Oh and sprinkles.
S- Do you have plans for another book?AA- Hmm, not totally sure yet. Right now I'm waiting to see how this one goes, and also weighing up craft books as opposed to PDF patterns.
S- I love the photo's in your book! Did you get to take part in that process as well?AA- The photography side was a really interesting process. I would have loved have been on site when it was done, but I am in the UK and C&T are in California so it just wasn't possible. But, as the author, I did have to supply initial images for every shot in the book which have to show what goes in the picture, which angle, props etc. I did do a couple of those images outdoors, but was stunned when I first saw all the book photography. The images really add to the animals character, and it does amuse me that a book, written by a British author, full of animals from the British countryside, have been photographed outdoors in America!
S- What's your favorite sweet treat?AA- I am totally addicted to chocolate.