May 26, 2016 @ 3:05 pm
We were delighted to interview Cara Ackerman, PR Coordinator and resident needlecraft expert at DMC Creative World, at a Trade Show earlier this year. We were keen to find out more about Cara and also about DMC’s recent yarn launch.
You’re currently launching a new ‘DMC’ yarn – can you tell us a little bit about it?
DMC Natura Medium is 100% cotton; it’s really soft and doesn’t irritate the skin –so it’s lovely to wear and great if you have any skin conditions or sensitive skin. Natura Medium is a natural follow-on from Natura (4-ply) and Natura XL (super chunky). It sits between a double knitting and aran weight, so it’s great for beginners to learn with. It comes in a range of 32 colours which are gorgeous and range from neon brights to more subtle tones. Like any yarn, a tension square is recommended before you being your project to make sure you match the pattern tension and your finished project will be the right size.
We were looking at the crochet market about 4 years ago when the advent of the Crochet part-work magazines really helped spread the word of crochet. It seemed to attract a younger audience who had seen people crocheting and who wanted to learn. Since then we’ve seen a huge increase, year-on-year, in the number of people crocheting. DMC has developed a range of cotton yarns specifically for crochet, and we launch new patterns seasonally. A lot of knitters are moving over to crochet to expand their skills too, which is fantastic.
People often see crochet as a bit 1970s – we often see photos of strange crochet paraphernalia on social media (such as crocheted shorts/bikinis etc.). Do you think crochet is now being taken more seriously now that “handmade” is back in fashion?
Thanks to Beyonce, the crochet bikini has taken on a whole new meaning and I was recently chatting to a younger crocheter who wanted to crochet a bikini. The DMC cotton range would be perfect as the colours don’t run – so watch this space!!! Many of the top fashion houses have vintage-style crochet in their Spring/Summer collections and it’s great to see designers being creative with crochet. You can also mix and match crochet with leather or fabric as well as beads and tassels to make your projects more up to date and personal.
Do you have a favourite bit of crochet paraphernalia?
My favourite crochet items are my mum’s crochet hooks, which are very precious to me. When I use the crochet hooks I feel a special connection, and they’re still as good today as they were all those years ago. Although I must admit that I also love our DMC bamboo hooks which are lovely and smooth and light. They look fun and appeal to a young audience who like natural fibres and they’re great if you suffer with arthritis as they are warmer to use than traditional metal ones.
Do you have a top tip for Crafting in general, not necessarily just for crochet?
I do a huge number of crafts, and so my tip is to try and finish a project before you start a new one. It’s really easy to start too many. I have one project on the go that I keep dipping in and out of, but I’m determined to get it finished before I start another big project. That said, I keep playing around with Natura Medium making Spring flowers and Easter bunnies.
What in this industry inspires you?
On a personal level, my inspiration is to get as many people as possible crocheting, whether it’s working with designers and tutors, or by using magazines and videos. I think it’s really important for crochet to be as accessible as possible.
On a work level, my inspiration is the colour range of DMC yarns. DMC is all about colour and we’re known for our fantastic colour range. It’s great that we can offer such an amazing range to inspire people, it’s like going into a sweet shop and being spoilt for choice.
What would 16 year-old Cara make of you now?
I was very creative as a child and have been crocheting since I was 8 years old when I was taught by a neighbour and I still haven’t stopped learning. I always hand-crafted gifts at Christmas, so I think 16 year old Cara wouldn’t be surprised at the older Cara today, and I think she would have been very proud of my achievements.
On the scale of a couple of balls of yarn to a Westminster Abbey sized heap, how big is your stash? What does your stash look like, how is it organised?
My husband would say the size of Westminster Abbey, and I would say no it’s not –but I have to admit that it’s quite big and I love to add to it at any opportunity. However, my stash is not just yarn, as I enjoy lots of other crafts as well, so I have boxes of threads and buttons all over the place. My yarn stash itself is quite manageable but it does need sorting out, and it’s on my to-do list for 2016.
How many WIP’S do you have?
I try not to have too many WIPS at any one time, and try to finish each project before I start another one. Crochet is my passion so most of my WIPs are crochet and initially I would have said that I only had two, but I’ve found a few more tucked away in bags, which makes a total of five!
Thank you so much for your time and for giving us and future crafters such a great choice of yarns. You are now an honorary member of The Crochet Circle and it has been an absolute pleasure to welcome you in.
DMC manufactures richly-coloured yarns, threads and fabrics and essential accessories for your craft projects.
To see the full range visit www.dmccreative.co.uk
To win 200g of DMC Natura Medium you can enter our competition here on Ravelry (open until 30th. June 2016):
We hope you enjoyed the interview and thanks for listening to The Crochet Circle Podcast. Don't forget to tune in on the first Friday of every month for our regular episodes.