Embroidery

Hello Wonderful! An Interview With Sarah K Benning


It probably took me .02 seconds to fall in love with the Sarah K Benning 's thread drawings when I saw them on Instagram! Her highly detailed contemporary  embroidery is to die for and also now to "DIY for" since she started a monthly pattern subscription. Not only am I in love with her work I also appreciate her transparency about the realities of running a business as an artist. I know you will love this interview!


Who are you, what do you do and where in the world are you?

My name is Sarah, though lots of friends and family call be Benni, and I am an American fiber artist primarily working with embroidery. At the moment, I am in Menorca, Spain, but I am soon relocating to New Hampshire (the northeast of the United States) for the summer. My studio practice, much in thanks to the portable and accessible nature of embroidery, is quite nomadic. Over the next year or two I will be dividing my time between the mountains of New Hampshire, my home town of Baltimore, and Mediterranean home-away-from-home Menorca.

What do you believe in?

I believe in doing my best and keeping an open mind in new situations.

When do you feel your most wonderful?

I feel the most wonderful with a new embroidery project in hand and a mug of coffee close by.

What is something wonderful that has happened that would have never have happened if you hadn't made a mistake or a wrong turn somewhere? 

I think everything I have going for me now is the result of a series of 'mistakes' and 'wrong' turns. There is no 'right' way to live life and find happiness, so all we can do is learn from our failures and move on. I definitely had doubts about moving to Spain 9 months ago. I spoke (and arguably still speak) only a tiny bit of Spanish and was wracked with fear about putting my embroidery practice and online shop on hold while I moved and adjusted to life in Menorca. But now, having gone through the process I wouldn't change a thing (accept maybe study more Spanish...).

What is the earliest time in your life that you can remember experiencing wonder?

When I was little my best friend lived right across the street. We were inseparable spending every spare second of the day together. She had a nanny who was also a painter and sometimes she would bring us to her painting studio. I can remember a feeling of complete awe watching her transform the globs of raw color on her palette into swirls of blended colors and forms on her canvases. She made me believe I could be an artist too and I will always be grateful to her for that.

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Who are three wonderful people you think we need to know about?

If you don't already, you need to know about Cayce Zavalgia and her incredible stitched portraits. You need to know about Abby Glassenberg and her blog/podcast While She Naps. She is a great resource of creative small businesses and I love her interviews with makers and industry professionals. And lastly, you need to know about Julia Rothman because her illustrations are just so great.

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Thank you so much Sarah! You can view Sarah's website here and follow her journey on InstagramFacebook and Pinterest

Have a wonderful day!

 


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Hello Wonderful! An Interview With Meaghan Cook


Just look at those delicious cakes up there. Drool! I have never tasted one of Meaghan Cook's cakes before but if they taste even half as good they look I know I would be in heaven! Those colours! Those flowers! Oh my. Meaghan doesn't just make some of the loveliest looking cakes around she is a multitalented creative person and is also a photographer-journalist-teacher-embroider. I'm such a fan of her creative work and also appreciate that her honesty, friendliness and warmth shines through in her online presence. I always enjoy people who add to the kindness in the world both online and off.  Hope you like this fun interview below with the wonderful Meaghan! 


Who are you, what do you do and where in the world are you?

I'm currently sitting in my living room which overlooks my jungle backyard, with some embroidery work on my lap and a cup of tea in my hand. I live not far from the ocean in a small town in Australia. 
I'm a photographer-journalist-teacher-cakemaker-embroider. It's a mouthful, but it's the muddle of a life I've made for myself. Each hyphen is as important as the next.

What do you believe in?

I believe in compassion. The hardest times in my life have always been made easier when I've been compassionate. It's not always easy, especially if you are hurting, but compassion paves the way to something better.

When do you feel your most wonderful?

Usually in the 2.3 seconds between sleep and waking up fully.

What is something wonderful that has happened that would have never have happened if you hadn't made a mistake or a wrong turn somewhere?

I've been mulling over this question because I find it really hard to pinpoint moments in life in this way. It's more all rolling and swirling and moving along for me, I'm perhaps not wise enough to draw the dots between moments. 
What I would say though, is that I've done things which seemed like a terrible idea at the time (dropped out of university, quit my newspaper job, cut my fringe) which turned out completely wonderful (I was able to revive after my uni burn out, I dumped journalism and took up photography, I rocked that new hair cut like no one's business).

What is the earliest time in your life that you can remember experiencing wonder?

Childhood pretty mush is 214/7 wonder, right? I wonder when dinner will be ready. I wonder if Scott Morrison likes me. I wonder when I'll grow boobs.

Who are three wonderful people you think we need to know about?

These are people who do wonderful things and enrich my life. No, I've never met them, I just love them from afar. 

Claudia Wu and Kerry Diamond who started Cherry Bombe magazine. Their podcast about women in food is my favourite thing to listen too while I'm working on whatever it is I'm working on. 

Katherine Ryan the Canadian stand up comedian living in the U.K. Killing the stand up scene and blazing a hilarious trail for female comics. 

Miranda July. Because, well, she's Miranda July.


Thank you so much Meaghan! You can visit Meaghan's website here and also find her on Instagram.

Have a wonderful day!


Hello Wonderful! An interview with the wonderful Lindsay from Tusk and Cardinal!


I always enjoy when Linsday from Tusk and Cardinal's embroidery work pops up in my Instagram homefeed and I thought it would be fun to get to know her a little better! If she could, she would sew, drink gallons of Earl Grey, and watch British television for days on end. Sigh. Who wouldn't? Enjoy getting to know Lindsay below and you'll see why she's so inspiring and wonderful! 


Who are you, what do you do and where in the world are you? 

My name is Lindsay and I live in a bitty apartment in downtown Sacramento, CA. I love it! I work for a retina practice by day, and by night I manage all things tusk + cardinal.

What do you believe in? My family, my God, myself. Though that last one is a constant work in progress.

When do you feel your most wonderful?

Naps. Naps make me feel the MOST wonderful. Also I experience a blind euphoria when eating ice cream or Thai food.


What is something wonderful that has happened that would have never have happened if you hadn't made a mistake or a wrong turn somewhere?  

As a directionally challenged individual, wrong turns are a consistent part of my life. Wrong turns have lead me to hidden fishing holes, tasty burger joints, and weird and funky boutiques. I try to embrace my constant confusion.

What is the earliest time in your life that you can remember experiencing wonder? When was the most recent time? 

 I LOVE film. I remember seeing movies like "ET" and "Nightmare Before Christmas" as a child and being delighted by the idea that something that looks scary could be wonderful. Most recently I visited Mendocino, CA and the beautiful combination of ocean and forest always blows me away.

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Who are three wonderful people you think we need to know about. Why are they wonderful?

Stephanie Lapre creates incredible and intricate hand embroidered wall art that will amaze and delight you.

Bridget Prater specializes in beautiful one-of-a-kind dream catchers and looking stylish 'round the clock.

Nichole and Heather of To Little Arrows, who create customizable nursery decor, and give back a portion of the proceeds to charity. 


Thank you so much Lindsay! You can view Tusk and Cardinal's Etsy store here and also follow along on Instagram here.  

Have a wonderful day!