Wednesday, May 19, 2010

mum who makes :: Winnie and Clem

mum who makes :: Winnie and Clem

Tell us a bit about yourself?
My name is Anita and I am a Mum to 2 beautiful children, Ella (3) and Jackson (1). I am also a farmers wife, a daughter, a sister, and an aunty. I live on a farm just out of a small town called Taralga, about 60km from the nearest city, Goulburn in the Southern Tablelands of NSW. After having grown up the country it was refreshing to move back to farm life with fresh air, a vegie garden and of course loads of hard work. I love beautiful things...especially when they are handmade. In my small rural community I am surrounded by people that make - jewellery, chocolates, art, and preserves, it all inspires me! My professional background is in science and pharmaceuticals and whilst I love that job it is fields away from being able to create!

Can you explain your craft/art and the materials you like to use?
I am a sewer. I make practical homewares that are beautiful. I believe in indulging in gorgeous designer fabrics but making them into useful and practical items. I like my items to be unique, for example my peg aprons are something not seen in main stream retail and my perfect fit aprons offer a design feature different from most aprons. I also make kids buckets hats, again from designer fabrics. Kids hats are a must for any sun sensible parent, so why not make them fun and stylish as well as practical. Having been taught to sew by my Mum, a dress maker and couture wedding dress designer, I am a perfectionist. I only sell items I would be happy to purchase myself. I believe in quality and durability, hence my items are either topstitched or feature reinforced stitching.

How long have you been creating and how did you get into making handmade goodies?
I have been creating since I was a child. My Mum started teaching us to sew before we were at school. I remember my Mum's sewing room with a cupboard overflowing with fabric and we use to rummage through it for what we wanted and while she made it up she would set us down with a needle and thread to do our card of stitches. I have always made clothes for myself and my friends. I remember making year 10 formal dresses for a group of my school friends many years ago! Before I had my children I started making bags, and then when my kids came along, they, along with my home became my focus and my inspiration, hence my range of homewares and kidswear.

How do you juggle motherhood & crafting/managing your business?
I think mothers have a natural ability to juggle many things. I do however have a very supportive husband and I am often saved at the end of the day with a good glass of sav blanc. Fortunately my husband has also managed 2 small businesses so his advice has been invaluable. I find that because I have orders to do or new items to post on my store, I am more structured and so my kids get good quality time with me. I am due to return to my "paid" job in August and whilst most of this can be worked at home I will have to travel to Sydney (4hour commute) one day a week...needless to say I may have a very different opinion on juggling motherhood, career and Winnie&Clem then!

Do you have any advice to other Mothers who are wanting to start creating handmade goodies?
Its great to have a Mummy thing, so go for it but I would offer these three pieces of advice -
1. Choose your items carefully and limit your range of goods, it is easy to get caught up in the excitement of wanting to create but sometimes a smaller range is better and easier to manage
2. Listen to other crafters, read blogs, use the internet, books, forums etc for as much advice and inspiration as you can.
3. Share the experience with your kids, it teaches them so much and they will start to appreciate the basics in life. My daughter now asks when we are in a shop "who made this?" or if we are in the supermarket "who grew this?", it just makes me smile!


  1. Great name for a shop - you named it after my sweet guinea pigs, Winston and Clementine, didn't you? : )

  2. LOL - Actually they were my grandparents names, I am sured they would be flattered to have guinea pigs named after them too!!!


You may also like:

Related Posts with Thumbnails