Meet the creator: Stacey Bigg
To celebrate Wool Week, we sat down with Stacey Bigg from Kalaii Creations to find out more about the chunky knit trend and why she loves working with wool.
Meet the Creator | Stacey Bigg, Kalaii Creations
1. Can you tell us why and how you started hand knitting with wool?
I created Kalaii Creations out of my passion for arts, crafts and design. Having left my creative ways behind in high school as many of us do, to climb the corporate ladder, my creative journey was reignited recently while on maternity leave with my second baby. I attended some creative workshops for a 'little bit of me time' in particular a course called “How to crochet a linen bag” and I was hooked! Except I wanted to go bigger! I saw this chunky merino wool on Instagram and all of the beautiful throws that are so on trend and had to teach myself how to do it, so I could have my very own.
2. What inspired you to start running chunky knit cushion and throw workshops?
I really enjoyed working with Merino wool, and wanted to keep knitting, however the cost of merino wool is so high that I don’t think my husband would have approved me buying so much wool to keep my hobby going. Initially that’s when I thought it best to open an Etsy store, so I could make the throws on a made to order basis. Then a stylist friend of mine told me about the merino cushion puff craze, so I taught myself how to make these beautiful cushions too. Once I had lots of practice from all my custom orders, I wanted to share this skillset, as I noticed there was nothing like it offered at the workshop location I had attended. I reached out to the provider and we were all very excited to get started.
3. How long have you been running your chunky knit cushion workshops for?
I will be coming up to my 1 year anniversary in July.
4. Why do you love working with 100% merino wool?
It is so soft and luxurious and did I mention warm! It’s just so on trend, and has been for quite some time. It’s just nice to be able to sit back relax, and knit away and at the end you have something so unique and lavish.
5. Why do you love hand knitting?
I tried both arm knitting and hand knitting, and hand knitting is by far the easiest method. When you arm knit, you use your arms as the knitting needles. I found it difficult if I was interrupted, with a phone call, or of course with my two little ones, I didn’t know how to stop what I was doing and how to pick It all back up again. When hand knitting you can stop at any time and come back to it all very easily. You also see it all in front of you, so it’s really easy to see if you have dropped a stitch, or need to amend your tension.
6. How long does it take you to hand knit a chunky cushion?
For me I hand knit a cushion within 30-45 minutes. My workshops though, go for 2.5 – 3 hours.
7. How long does it take you to hand knit a chunky throw?
This can vary greatly depending on the size of the blanket requested.
It can take a few hours to make 1.5m x 2m blanket. My blanket workshops usually run for 4 hours and we make a 1m x 1.3m size blanket.
8. What feedback have you received from attendees of your DIY Knitting workshops?
The attendees always leave with a smile on their face, and I think a big feeling of accomplishment, as it is a tricky skillset to learn. Attendees always leave with a finished cushion or blanket. I also have DIY videos available for my attendees so if they want to further develop/practice their new skills they can undo their blanket/cushions at home and remake them.
I try to let the participants know, that they should be super proud of themselves, and to not be too disappointed if their blanket or cushion isn’t perfect in the first instance, as it took me practising over and over again at least 4-5 times in a row before I got it all down pat. But there are some very clever and crafty people out there, and some of the students leave with cushions or blankets, that are near perfect! My favourite thing, is when the workshop attendees go on to take pictures of their creations (and tag me on Instagram) and talk about their time in the workshop and the fun that they had!
DIY Workshop: Chunky Knit Cushion
If you would like to participate in one of Stacey's DIY workshops, book from one of the sessions below to secure your spot.
For more information on Wool Week click here
Wool Week is in partnership with The Woolmark Company