Designer Bayley Collins lives in Grey Lynn, Auckland, with her husband (whom she married in Las Vagas last September), two cats, Ziggy and Zues, and an imminent new arrival. Combining her love of collage and illustration to create collections for her birdinabunnysuit label is her dream job.
What do you make? Collages and illustrations of animals with personality!
How did you get into your craft?
After studying I decided the best way to find my dream job was to create it. I wasn’t sure exactly what I wanted to do, just that I wanted to be creative and be my own boss.
I started to make little collages. My first one was an owl with a rabbit’s body. My husband asked me what it was and I said “It’s a bird in a bunny suit.” It all started from that moment.
Do you have formal training or qualifications in your craft?
Yes, I have my Bachelor of Visual Arts and Design.
Your favourite materials, tools and processes?
Pencils, scissors and glue. I love to sit down with lots of illustrated pieces and see what happens and what kind of characters emerge.
Is there a philosophy behind your work?
I’m not sure if there is a particular philosophy behind my work. I just love creating little characters and seeing other people enjoy them.
Describe your workspace:
I had a studio until about a month ago. Now my first baby is due any day so my studio space has been filled with baby related bits and bobs, and I have become very organised! I have a small desk that looks out over Grey Lynn and the Auckland CBD.
Five words that describe your mind:
Quiet, non-stop, creative, imaginative and a little bit nuts – but I don’t think I could come up with new ideas for birdinabunnysuit without being a little bit nuts.
What are you currently listening to? Angus and Julia Stone.
Recommend an album: Down the Way – Angus & Julia Stone
Your favourite childhood book? The Enchanted Wood by Enid Blyton
What are you reading now? I’m Not Fat, I’m Pregnant! by Jaquie Brown.
A favourite quote:
My favourite quote is a very simple one: “Keep moving forward.”
galleryDo you have any pets?
Yes! My two cats, Ziggy and Zues, who keep me company while I work from home and give me endless inspiration for new work.
If you were a crafty superhero, what would your name and superpower be?
Girl in a Bunny Suit – and I would be able to talk to animals.
What was the last handmade item you bought?
A cute lion soft toy made from an old woollen blanket from Kraftbomb in Grey Lynn.
Visit Bayley’s Felt shop to see all of her beautiful prints and cards. Bayley has generously offered one lucky Felt blog reader a prize of two large prints of the winner’s choice from her Felt shop! To be in to win, leave a comment below, telling us what inspires you about Bayley’s whimsical art. The draw will be made on Friday 16 August and is open to New Zealand residents only.
We are very grateful to Bayley for answering all our questions, especially given that she’s about to go into labour with her first baby! We wish you all the best, Bayley. Despite being at such an eventful time, birdinabunnysuit will be at Kraftbomb on Sunday 29 September at the Grey Lynn Community Centre, Auckland.