Featured seller: Honeycakes

Lisa Craig, the talented brains behind Honeycakes original knitting patterns, has had a passion for yarn right from her childhood. “Ever since I was a child I have knitted. I grew up playing with buttons, trims, ribbons and yarn. Once I started knitting I never stopped making and creating, so went on to study textile design. I knit anywhere, anytime, and I’m always thinking of new ideas and designs.”

Living in rural Auckland with her husband and three children, she works from home in her design studio on a hilltop surrounded by farmland and the sea, looking out to islands in the Hauraki Gulf.

What do you make?
I am a textile designer, knitting is my thing… I design knitting patterns for babies and children and have started working on a women’s wear range too.

How did you get into your craft?
My mother was always knitting and taught me to knit when I was about seven years old. The first thing I made was a blanket for my doll.

Do you have formal training or qualifications in your craft?
I studied in Wellington; a three year diploma in Textile Design. I then worked for Feltex Yarns designing knitting patterns and learnt to write patterns.

What is the process of pattern-making?
I keep note books full of ideas, sketches and notes… from there I will develop the idea, chose a yarn and knit a swatch. I then work out the maths (repeats and sizing) for the pattern. The pattern is written, a sample is knitted up and the pattern checked. Next step: photography – and then publishing the pattern!

Your favourite materials, tools and processes?
Merino wool and alpaca are my favourite fibres. My favourite process is knitting a swatch and designing as I go – it gives me a chance to be more creative.

What inspires you?
My children inspire me. I started Little Cupcakes when they were young. I couldn’t find knitting patterns that I liked, so started designing for them.

I am passionate about knitting and the process of design and creating. I love pattern, texture and colour. Inspiration comes from everywhere – from fashion stores, magazines, books, museums, art galleries and landscape – all inspired by the beauty that is New Zealand.

My family all play a part in the design process. My children model the knitwear and my husband plays his part as the photographer. Each photo shoot is an adventure that captures the essence and heart of my designs, from snow covered alps to sun drenched beaches.

Is there a philosophy behind your work?
To create original patterns to inspire others to knit and fill their lives with colour and creativity.

Describe your workspace:
On the top of our hill is home with a large studio attached. We have the most amazing view of the sea river and farmland, a perfect place to be creative.

I share the studio with my husband, his side has his photography gear and my side there is a lot of wool, knitting needles, buttons, threads, sample garment, books and works in progress.

Five words that describe your mind:
Colourful, creative, detailed, busy and inventive.

Your favourite feedback from a customer:
“Fantastic seller! Pattern is just gorgeous… I have knitted it up four times so far… one for a friend, one for my daughter’s dolly and two for the beanies for babies… thanks!”

What are you currently listening to? The Paper Kites.

Recommend an album:
Paper CranesLittle Darling.

Your favourite childhood book?
Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder.

What are you reading now?
I’m reading the Famous Five books with my children and just finished Jeffery Archer’s The Fourth Estate.

Favourite quotes:
“To draw, you must close your eyes and sing.” ~ Pablo Picasso.

“We dance for laughter, we dance for tears, we dance for madness, we dance for fears, we dance for hopes, we dance for screams, we are the dancers, we create the dreams.” ~ Albert Einstein.

galleryDo you have any pets?
Three Siamese cats called Bella, Boston and Piko and three lop-ear rabbits called Mouse, Diamond and Pickles. Boston the cat used to eat wool – thankfully he has grown out of that now!

What was the last handmade item you bought?
Hand dyed, hand spun wool/mohair that I crocheted into a scarf for myself.

What’s coming up on your calendar?
New designs in Vogue Knitting Magazine Early Fall 2013, Noro Magazine Fall/Winter 2013 and Noro 1, 2, 3 book. I’m also working on a new range of womens’ accessories: hats, scarves and mittens.

Lisa has very kindly offered one lucky Felt blog reader a prize of five Honeycakes PDF patterns of the winner’s choice, worth $40! Leave a comment below, telling us why you like Lisa’s work or how it inspires you, and you’ll be in to win. The draw will be made on Friday 5 July and is open to New Zealand residents only. Make sure you have a look at the rest of Lisa’s beautiful work in her Felt shop.

Tags: , , , ,

30 Responses to “Featured seller: Honeycakes”

  1. deb says:

    Awesome! I love it when you profile someone you don’t know at all. Thank you. I want to knit one of the hats

  2. Pauline says:

    I just love making Lisa’s patterns and always eagerly await her new designs. Has become somewhat of an addiciton. Lol! So many good features- the size range, yarn varieties and best of all the unique designs she comes up with. I have made many of her designs numerous times and especially love her blanket designs. My favourite is the Icecream blanket. Also love the presentation of her designs. Gorgeous models and settings.
    Always keen to try her new patterns and constantly tell other knitters about her. She is so easy to deal with and friendly.
    Keep on designing!

  3. Karen McLean says:

    Being of the “younger generation” i generally dont like alot of knitted babies/childrens wear, but patterns such as the ones from Lisa Craig make me fall in love with knitwear! Make me want to learn to knit :) With my first baby on the way, id love to let my mum (first time grandma) make some of Lisas beautiful pieces.

  4. Juliet says:

    Love Lisa’s designs – the first pattern I bought was a baby blanket…. since then I’ve bought a few more! Love the fact that I could email her a question about her pattern – and got a response promptly!

  5. Tania Agnew says:

    I love original children’s clothes – they suit my daughter better then the mass produced stuff that is so readily available.

  6. Jenny says:

    I love the vintage and natural look of Lisa’s work and it really inspires me want to get out my knitting needles (I’m more of a sewer!) and also to take kids on more outdoor adventures all rugged up and warm!

  7. Camilla says:

    I love the patterns as they all look so gorgeously wearable!

  8. Raewyn says:

    I love looking at all your lovely patterns and have just finally purchased two. i havent knitted in ages and am already half way though a lovely little hat. Great to read your story and how all the family are involved.

  9. Amanda says:

    There’s nothing better than a baby in a Beanie!! I love Little Cupcakes’ beautiful style – have bought two yummy jumper patterns, and both have worked well. I far prefer using natural wool and these patterns are made for it!!

  10. Emma says:

    Lisa is a wonderful designer. Her patterns are gorgeous and well thought out, and are very popular with family and friends. I have many requests for hats and jerseys knitted from Lisa’s patterns.

  11. Sarah says:

    Lisa’s patterns are all so inspiring – it is usually quite hard to decide on just one! They are also wonderfully easy to use, making projects for a beginner knitter like myself easily obtainable! Thanks Lisa!

  12. Desdemona says:

    I love Lisa’s designs; thanks to her & a wonderful knitting Aunty my son has a beautiful heirloom cot blanket. Would love some more patterns to be able to add to my children’s winter wardrobe.

  13. Rachel Caldwell says:

    I love your work, it makes me want to knit ;)

  14. Jess says:

    I have an addiction to these lovely patterns! Just as well that I think my wee man looks gorgeous in Lisa’s lovely designs. I enjoy how well written they are and that the patterns I’ve knitted have been simple yet stunning to make.

  15. Lisa says:

    I love your patterns, the laid back style is very cool. I would to have any number of your patterns

  16. Lizzie says:

    Your patterns are just gorgeous and so easy to follow. Reading your delightful interview has inspired me to get out my needles again :)

  17. Jessica says:

    I’m addicted to Lisa’s patterns. They are just beautiful and always knit up so well. I have had many comments about the items I have knitted up. The trouble is she keeps designing such gorgeous patterns, and I have such trouble deciding which ones to buy as I only have so much time to knit, and her patterns just make me want to knit all day. I have made her little bear hat so many times and now have to get the next size knitted up for my little boy as it is too adorable on him.

  18. Naomi says:

    I have been eyeing up your patterns for a long time now and wishing I knew how to follow them! It would be fantastic to win this prize as it would finally give me the motivation to make the leap back into knitting! LOVE your work!

  19. rachelmadenz says:

    HI would love to get some of these patterns for my mum…she is a very keen knitter of nearly 60 years and will knit items for all the children in my live when ever I ask…these patterns are just beautiful

  20. Debbie Butler says:

    I have been a knitter but haven’t done any for a few years, Seeing your patterns makes me want to get the needles out again. Just fantastic patterns.

  21. Bridget says:

    Beautiful patterns, love the vintage feel and the achievement of making them yourself. Stunning photographs of her children also.

  22. Angela Lindfield says:

    It inspires me to… learn to knit!!!
    Luckily my children have wonderful Great Grandmothers who do so for us until then :-)

  23. Marilyn says:

    I love the vintage look for babies. My niece is 6 months old and I’ve been knitting up vintage patterns in beautiful bamboo and cotton. It’s nice to find patterns like Lisa’s to itch the knitting and crochet spot! Thanks Lisa. Love the hairband too!

  24. Emma says:

    Hi.. wow! i have not seen your stuff before- looks amazing. cannot wait to buy some patterns and hope to win them.. i have a 5, 3 and 9 month old so always looking for new designs. fingers crossed. Emma

  25. Frederique says:

    The patterns are inspiring for a newbie knitter like myself. Expecting a first child in a few months seems to have triggered my inner crafter and I have been teaching myself to crochet and knit, but the latter is still intimidating…

  26. Becky says:

    Oh wow, these are gorgeous! I love the style and”feel” of them, and my first nephew/niece is expected soon!

  27. Murielle says:

    The gorgeous patterns speak of the passion & love you have for what you do. They’re simply sassy, and stylish!

  28. Amanda says:

    I just LOVE your work! I absolutely fell in love with knitted garments with my first baby and now the second is on the way im on the knitting bandwagon again trying to source out lovely, modern yet vintage inspired pieces – much like your work! I must add also I am most impressed with your husbands photography also. What a great family unit of talented people!

  29. Rachel says:

    There is something about winter that just makes you want to knit and the easier the pattern the better. I love the newsboy hat and hooded vest and it is great how the patterns are for a range of ages so my son has enjoyed a new hat and vest for the past two winters. Thanks Lisa for making the cold nights enjoyable!

  30. Kristin says:

    Love the patterns! Just got last years’ alpaca fleeces back from the spinner and I can’t wait to knit up some winter hats for my kiddos.

Leave a Reply