Designer Profile- Ellen Gormley

One of the pleasures of writing Hankering for Yarn is that it gives me a chance to talk with neat people.

photo by Ellen Gormley copyright

photo by Ellen Gormley copyright

I love doing interviews

with other designers

and hearing about

the design process in their lives.

Today, I am interviewing

the lovely and talented Ellen Gormley.

My questions are in green

and Ellen’s answers are in black:

1. How did you create your life as a designer?

Like everything else, my design career has evolved. Long before I quit my “real job” my co-workers and I would talk about what we would do if we could do any profession we wanted. I used to say, “I want to get paid to crochet!”. When the kids came along and we decided I would stay home with them, I decided that I would spend $100 pursuing crochet. I made decision charts about various ways of crocheting for profit… craft fairs, custom orders, publishing, etc. And I decided to see if I could sell patterns so that I wouldn’t have to sit in a booth all day (who would watch the kids with DH busy working?). Also, I knew I didn’t have the time or temperament to mass produce items for sale.

2. Do you have a favorite  aspect of all that you do?

I’m a compliment junkie. Time and resources are limited for our hobbies, so when someone chooses to spend her (or his) free-time on one of my patterns, it is a huge, huge compliment. What a thrill!

photo by Ellen Gormley copyright

photo by Ellen Gormley copyright

3. What aspect of being a designer

is most challenging to you?

The most challenging part of designing is grading garments.

When I do math, I have to “show my work”

so that I can follow what I’m doing.

It is very easy to get myself confused.

I find that if I write out my rationale long hand, it’s a little easier (but still hard!).

photo by Ellen Gormley copyright

photo by Ellen Gormley copyright

4. What part of designing

is the most rewarding to you?

When I see photos posted

of projects that crafters

have made from my patterns,

it’s the best thing

in the whole experience.

5. How long have you been designing  professionally?

I began designing in 2004. I have been crocheting on and off since I was 10 or so. I have been crocheting steadily since 1994.

6. What triggers your creativity? What is most inspiring to you?

It is really inspiring to make a gift for a specific person. What looks good on her? What colors does she like? How will she use it? I find smooth yarns more inspiring than textured ones. Smooth yarn feels like more of a blank canvas with limitless possibilities.

7. Are the fiber arts your main focus?

Yes, the last few years I am all stitching. As a child I was obsessed with spiral-graph drawings. I was a photography major in college, until the world went digital at the same time I got busy with family. Growing up, my Mom and I were always doing some sort of stitchery, embroidery, macrame’, basic sewing, cross-stitch, etc. But since 1994, I have been consumed with crochet expanding to knit.

8. What is your favorite way of getting your work out into the world?

While I love Ravelry, I’m having much fun posting about my work on Facebook and Twitter because it allows my Aunts and Cousins, high school friends, to be exposed to the art that I love.

photo by Ellen Gormley copyright

photo by Ellen Gormley copyright

9. Does where you live

influence your work in any way?

We live in Southern Ohio

where winters can be cold

and summers are hot.

The winter necessity for fun hats and scarves

has really influenced

the projects I make.

10. Where can people buy your work?

My blog and Ravelry.

www.GoCrochet.com

http://www.ravelry.com/stores/ellen-gormley-at-gocrochet-designs

11. Do you maintain a blog or website? If so, what are their urls?

www.GoCrochet.com is my blog and there is a gallery link from it.

12. Do you have a crafting or arts community that influences you and is important to you? (online or ‘real life’). Is it important to you to be in touch with your peers?

I participate in a ‘Crochet and Chat’ at our local library. Online, I participate as much as I can. Participating with others in person is really important. Designing can be very isolating. It’s so secretive until the project is published. There is so much that can’t be said. Meeting with friends in person alleviates much of this and the common love for the craft is very inspiring. It is also humbling because there are so many very talented crafters out there!

photo by Ellen Gormley copyright

photo by Ellen Gormley copyright

13. Do you have an all time favorite

piece that you designed?

I have a soft spot for

my daughter’s First Communion Dress.

I thought about that dress for months before I started.

Still there are things I would do differently,

but she liked it

and it’s now part of our family history.

14. Is there a project or product that has ever flumoxed you and just refused to work out?

I’m sure there is, but everything evolves so much from the initial idea. Oh, I know one, there was a tote bag once that just didn’t want to be structured like I wanted it to be! No matter what I did, it was floppy.

15. Many designers are immersing themselves in self publishing. Is this part of the way that you work?

I do have several patterns for sale as PDFs. I definitely see advantages to self-publishing. Many of the technical aspects of self-publishing; charts, graphics, etc are somewhat intimidating. Right now, I’m content to let others work all of that out and let me spend my time designing and stitching. It is also fun to be part of a publication with others so that you can share and talk about the experience. There is camaraderie in being part of a traditional publication that is missing from self-publishing.

16. Is there anything that I have missed that you would like to share with the readers of Hankering for Yarn?

I’m a mom. I crochet at soccer games and swim practice. I design because I love it, but it also contributes to our family’s income. This is a business and without business people creating, there would be much less crochet to consume and inspire.

AND:

1.  Ellen has a book coming out in Spring 2011.
2.  An interview with Ellen can be seen in the upcoming season of Knit and Crochet Today/Now

Thanks, Ellen! wishing you even greater success with ‘Go Crochet!’

Here are the questions for the profile:

1.  How did you create your life as a designer?

Like everything else, my design career has evolved. Long before I quit my “real job” my co-workers and I would talk about what we would do if we could do any profession we wanted. I used to say, “I want to get paid to crochet!”. When the kids came along and we decided I would stay home with them, I decided that I would spend $100 pursuing crochett. I made decision charts about various ways of crocheting for profit… craft fairs, custom orders, publishing, etc. And I decided to see if I could sell patterns so that I wouldn’t have to sit in a booth all day (who would watch the kids with DH busy working?). Also, I knew I didn’t have the time or temperament to mass produce items for sale.

2. Do you have a favorite product or aspect of all that you do?

I’m a compliment junkie. Time and resources are limited for our hobbies, so when someone chooses to spend her (or his) free-time on one of my patterns, it is a huge, huge compliment. What a thrill!

3. What aspect of being a designer, (and if you do workshops: as a workshop presenter) is most challenging to you?

The most challenging part of designing is grading garments. When I do math, I have to “show my work” so that I can follow what I’m doing. It is very easy to get myself confused. I find that if I write out my rationale long hand, it’s a little easier (but still hard!).

4. What part of it is the most rewarding to you?

When I see photos posted of projects that crafters have made from my patterns, it’s the best thing in the whole experience.

5. How long have you been designing and crafting your fiber arts professionally?

I began designing in 2004. I have been crocheting on and off since I was 10 or so. I have been crocheting steadily since 1994.

6. What triggers your creativity?  What is most inspiring to you? It is really inspiring to make a gift for a specific person. What looks good on her? What colors does she like? How will she use it? I find smooth yarns more inspiring than textured ones. Smooth yarn feels like more of a blank canvas with limitless possibilities.

7.  Are the fiber arts your main focus?

Yes, the last few years I am all stitching. As a child I was obsessed with spiral-graph drawings. I was a photography major in college, until the world went digital at the same time I got busy with family. Growing up, my Mom and I were always doing some sort of stitchery, embroidery, macrame’, basic sewing, cross-stitch, etc. But since 1994, I have been consumed with crochet expanding to knit.

8.  What is your favorite way of getting your work out into the world?

While I love Ravelry, I’m having much fun posting about my work on Facebook and Twitter because it allows my Aunts and Cousins, high school friends, to be exposed to the art that I love.

9. Does where you live influence your work in any way?

We live in Southern Ohio where winters can be cold and summers are hot. The winter necessity for fun hats and scarves has really influenced the projects I make.

10. Where can people buy your work? (links, please)

My blog and Ravelry.

www.GoCrochet.com

http://www.ravelry.com/stores/ellen-gormley-at-gocrochet-designs

11. Do you maintain a blog or website? If so, what are their urls?

www.GoCrochet.com is my blog and there is a gallery link from it.

12. Do you have a crafting or arts community that influences you and is important to you? (online or ‘real life’).  Is it important to you to be in touch with your peers?

I participate in a ‘Crochet and Chat’ at our local library. Online, I participate as much as I can. Participating with others in person is really important. Designing can be very isolating. It’s so secretive until the project is published. There is so much that can’t be said. Meeting with friends in person alleviates much of this and the common love for the craft is very inspiring. It is also humbling because there are so many very talented crafters out there!

13. Do you have an all time favorite piece that you designed?

I have a soft spot for my daughter’s First Communion Dress. I thought about that dress for months before I started. Still there are things I would do differently, but she liked it and it’s now part of our family history.

14. Is there a project or product that has ever flumoxed you and just refused to work out?

I’m sure there is, but everything evolves so much from the initial idea. Oh, I know one, there was a tote bag once that just didn’t want to be structured like I wanted it to be! No matter what I did, it was floppy.

15. Many designers are immersing themselves in self publishing. Is this part of the way that you work? I do have several patterns for sale as PDFs. I definitely see advantages to self-publishing. Many of the technical aspects of self-publishing; charts, graphics, etc are somewhat intimidating. Right now, I’m content to let others work all of that out and let me spend my time designing and stitching. It is also fun to be part of a publication with others so that you can share and talk about the experience. There is camaraderie in being part of a traditional publication that is missing from self-publishing.

16. Is there anything that I have missed that you would like to share with the readers of Hankering for Yarn?

I’m a mom. I crochet at soccer games and swim practice. I design because I love it, but it also contributes to our family’s income. This is a business and without business people creating, there would be much less crochet to consume and inspire.

- Show quoted text -

AND… could you please attach a photo or 2 to accompany this article?
May I have permission to post the pic to Hankering for Yarn? You will be credited with copyright.

I will be linking to whatever links you want me to include.

Ellen K. Gormley
Pro.Member, CGOA and TNNA
www.GoCrochet.com
think about our earth…do you really need to print this e-mail?

— On Thu, 12/10/09, Noreen Crone-Findlay <noreencronefindlay@gmail.com> wrote:

From: Noreen Crone-Findlay <noreencronefindlay@gmail.com>
Subject: Profile for Hankering for Yarn
To: “Ellen Gormley” <ellgormley@yahoo.com>
Date: Thursday, December 10, 2009, 5:10 PM

Hi Ellen
I would be delighted to do an interview with you!

Here are the questions for the profile:

1.  How did you create your life as a designer?

2. Do you have a favorite product or aspect of all that you do?

3. What aspect of being a designer, (and if you do workshops: as a workshop presenter) is most challenging to you?

4. What part of it is the most rewarding to you?

5. How long have you been designing and crafting your fiber arts professionally?

6. What triggers your creativity?  What is most inspiring to you?

7.  Are the fiber arts your main focus?

8.  What is your favorite way of getting your work out into the world?

9. Does where you live influence your work in any way?

10. Where can people buy your work? (links, please)

11. Do you maintain a blog or website? If so, what are their urls?

12. Do you have a crafting or arts community that influences you and is important to you? (online or ‘real life’).  Is it important to you to be in touch with your peers?

13. Do you have an all time favorite piece that you designed?

14. Is there a project or product  that has ever flumoxed you and just refused to work out?

15. Many designers are immersing themselves in self publishing. Is this part of the way that you work?

16. Is there anything that I have missed that you would like to share with the readers of Hankering for Yarn?

AND… could you please attach a photo or 2 to accompany this article?
May I have permission to post the pic to Hankering for Yarn? You will be credited with copyright.

I will be linking to whatever links you want me to include.

So, there you have it!
Thanks a million,
hugs
Noreen :o)

On Wed, Dec 9, 2009 at 6:12 AM, Ellen Gormley <ellgormley@yahoo.com> wrote:

HI Noreen,

I’d be honored to be on your blog one day and would be glad to return the favor.

All the best,
Ellen

Ellen K. Gormley
Pro.Member, CGOA and TNNA
www.GoCrochet.com
think about our earth…do you really need to print this e-mail?

— On Wed, 12/9/09, Noreen Crone-Findlay <noreencronefindlay@gmail.com> wrote:

From: Noreen Crone-Findlay <noreencronefindlay@gmail.com>
Subject: Re: [DSpeak-Easy] “The Designer’s Studio” interviews
To: Dspeakeasy@yahoogroups.com
Date: Wednesday, December 9, 2009, 12:25 AM

I also post interviews with designers on Hankering for Yarn- the one I did with Marty was VERY popular with readers…. (wow… LOTS of clicks!)
http://www.blisstre e.com/hankeringf oryarn/profile- crochet-designer -marty-miller/

I would be delighted to do interviews with any of the group members.
:o) Noreen

On Tue, Dec 8, 2009 at 10:05 PM, Vashti <vashtirama@gmail. com> wrote:

Faina Goberstein asks all knitwear (and I presume crochet) designers the same 15 questions then posts the answers as interviews on her blog. She now has a Rav forum:
http://www.ravelry. com/groups/ the-designers- studio

Vashti


Website: http://www.crone- findlay.com
Blog: http://www.blisstre e.com/hankeringf oryarn
Etsy: http://NCroneFindla y.etsy.com
Twitter: http://twitter. com/NCroneFindla y

__._,_.___
One designer speaking freely = one giant step for all designers.
.

__,_._,___


Website: http://www.crone-findlay.com
Blog: http://www.blisstree.com/hankeringforyarn
Etsy: http://NCroneFindlay.etsy.com
Twitter: http://twitter.com/NCroneFindlay

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