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Le 14 September 2017
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Meet our Artisans|Stitch Stories

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    We caught up with textile designer Kristen Gula, the designer behind Gulush Threads, and 
    creator of our newest free patterns. 

    1. Who taught you how to embroider/cross stitch/knit/crochet?

    I wish I had some beautiful story about how my grandmother would sit by me at a
    young age and stitch through the day while I stared in awe, eventually inspiring the
    artist you see today, but, sadly, I don’t. I am a completely self-taught hand embroiderer 
    and, to be honest, I am happy toclaim that as a badge of honor.

    2. Looking back, what did that mean to you?

    I’ve been a hand embroiderer for four years now and when I look back, I realize that
    everything that I have accomplished, everything that I have made, has been inspired
    by no one but myself. I have no one else to give credit but me; and that means the
    world when it comes to my craft, because it truly forces me to hold myself to a
    higher standard. I turn to myself for everything; and although that can be a burden
    at times, the outcome is nothing short of pride for my work.
    (Which, ironically, is the only downfall to being self-taught. The pride can be
    dangerous over time, if not kept in check).

    3. What got you hooked (in other words, what’d you love
    about it)?

    After losing my job two weeks before my wedding, I was feeling pretty down. I was
    in desperate need of an outlet—something to keep my mind busy as I was once
    again just a stay-at- home mom. Luckily, I received a beautiful hand embroidery as a
    wedding gift and I was immediately inspired to take up the craft and, well, the rest is
    history!

    I came to learn (with tons of practice, of course) that my favorite part about hand
    embroidery was the sound that the needle makes when it passes through the fabric.
    That little pop noise, followed by the thread brushing by the fibers of the fabric, is
    just so relaxing to me and truly has become therapeutic over the years.

    4. Have you passed your talents down? To who? If not, do you hope to pass your
    talents down? If so, to who?

    The only people in my family that I have taught to embroider have been my sisters,
    who became quick learners and fans of the craft. Teaching is something I love, so I
    teach anyone who is willing to learn, which includes my 85 year old grandmother
    when she was in the hospital recovering from surgery (she was a fan, even if she
    physically couldn’t keep up with it).
    I hope to one day teach my children, my daughter and my son. My daughter is
    already asking to learn and I keep telling her, “When you are a little bit older,” but
    perhaps I need to start planning to pass this craft down sooner rather than later.

    5. Why do you think passing this down is so important?

    I didn’t have the luxury of having someone inspire me with this craft at a young age
    and, although it is fun to learn something on one’s own, I know that I would have
    had more fun in my craft if I would have learned from someone I knew and loved. I
    believe learning something, whether it is cooking or embroidery, brings people
    closer together and forms a bond that lasts a lifetime.
    I hope to establish that with my children one day, inspiring them to pick up a needle
    and thread—a bond that brings my face to their mind every time they see an
    embroidery, hear about embroidery, or stitch some embroidery themselves.

    6. What’s your fave stitch and DMC colour?

    That’s a tough one! I would have to say that my favorite stitch would be the whipped
    back stitch (I just love the dimension the stitch brings to modern embroidery,
    especially in floral work). My favorite DMC colour would have to be a tie between
    3053 (or as I like to call it, antique green) and 3713 (blush pink). There is just
    something about a pale green and pink that gives me heart-eyes for days (I blame
    my grandmother and her bedroom decor. It always made me smile growing up).

    7. Where do you find inspiration?

    I find inspiration in my everyday life from my kid’s drawings to the ten foot
    sunflowers that are currently growing past the roof of my home. I would say that
    currently I am finding inspiration in nature. There is just something about the
    beauty of nature—the unexpected art of life—that leaves me breathless and inspires
    me to capture it forever in thread.


     
     
     

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