Meet the Vendor: Wise Craft Handmade + Giveaway
Who are you and what do you do?
I am Blair Stocker, head hand maker of Wise Craft Handmade. I am a quiltmaker, a painter, a quilt pattern creator, and fearless DIY’er of all things that decorate our home. I also published my first book this year, Wise Craft: Turning Thrift Store Finds, Fabric Scraps, and Natural Objects into Stuff You Love (Running Press).
Wise Craft Handmade uses reclaimed materials whenever possible, flawless craftsmanship, and beautiful pieces. I live in Seattle, and work from an all-white studio in our home’s basement. It’s my favorite place to be. You can find me here.
What’s the latest thing you’ve been working on?
I just finished up two new sewing patterns, the Hammerhead Quilt pattern, and the Faux Bois stitched pillow pattern. I am also currently working with a large stack of wool swatches, turning them into pillows and quilts. All this while binge-watching Girls, trying to clean my studio, and drinking coffee.
Any new exciting news you’d like to share with our readers?
I am working on a new book, similar to my first book in the way that I up cycle materials and reclaimed textiles, but this one is focused only on quilts. More details on that soon!
What was your first memory of making something?
My grandmother taught me to knit when I was 4. I only knew one stitch, but it was exhilarating to be able to make things with my hands. I’ve never lost that need to create, or the joy I get from it.
What is your favorite new product for 2014?
Hard to pick one, I’m loving all things made of natural materials this year. Wooden cutting boards, terrariums, indigo dyed textiles,
How far will you be traveling to come to UCU?
From North Seattle, so not far! How lucky am I?
What do you love most about craft show vending?
This is my first year, but I am looking forward to meeting the public and talking with them, getting feedback. As an attendee of UCU every year, I love the buzz in the venue, it’s very inspiring to me!
How did you get started in your business?
My business started as an offshoot of the blog I’ve been writing since 2005, Wise Craft. I began to find my aesthetic and style, and grew from there.
Is this a full-time business for you?
Where do you see your business in 3 years?
I would like to be selling more products, have another book published (and hopefully working on another one), and continuing to teach my craft to others in all sorts of ways.
Who’s your biggest fan?
I think it’s my family. My husband and kids have been front row center to all the hustling I’ve been doing over the past few years. They know its hard work, and they know that I’m doing what I love.
What’s something you’ve learned through running your business in the past 12 months?
I set personal deadlines for myself and stick to them. Working for myself, I realize there isn’t always somebody pushing me to get something done, or waiting for what I’m working on, so it’s up to me to keep my own momentum and hold myself accountable.
What’s your favorite item that you sell?
I will be offering leather covered rocks at UCU (above pic). I’ve made these for years and I adore them! They are useful (paperweights, desk objects…), tactile (they develop a beautiful patina with age and handling), beautiful. Both men and women love them.
What do your customers love most about your product(s)?
They seem to respond to my quirky color combinations and bright color palette. I want my products to feel happy and inspiring, and I think they feel exactly that.
What’s the best experience you’ve ever had with one of your customers?
One customer was purchasing my book and said “Whenever I’m feeling creatively stuck and look at your Instagram feed”. I thought that was such a nice thing to say! I’ve also had first time quilters purchase a quilt pattern from me and told me it was the tipping point for them, that they finally made their first quilt with my pattern. These kind of comments make it all worth it!
A copy of Blair’s new book!
To enter this drawing, share your favorite thrift store find or most beloved repurposed item in the comments below by December 3rd. Be sure to include your first name and email address so we can let our winners know where to pick up prizes at the UCU Winter Show.