Hey, everyone! We’re on day two of Plush Week, and I’m delighted to present today’s interview with Dawn Toussaint: a crochet designer!
I “met” Dawn a while ago over in the Ravelry amigurumi forums (‘amigurumi’ being a word that is used for crocheted plushies), and I instantly loved her sense of style: floppy arms and legs (and sometimes, ears, too!) and big, soulful eyes… don’t you just want to hug these guys?
Onto the interview!
How long have you been making plushies? How did you get started?
Since I was little… My Grandmother taught me to sew and crochet when I was pretty young, and stuffed animals were always my thing. My Aunt still has the first one I made for her when I was about 10. It’s really just a pillow with a teddy bear’s face on it, but it was my own design!
Aww… that’s so sweet! What inspired you to turn it into a business?
When people started offering me money for my dolls… I guess that started the business. I was also looking for something to help support my animal charity habit! And then it just became so much fun to meet all the people who shared my love for knit/crochet.
Where do you get inspiration for your creations from?
I went to college with the intent to be a children’s book illustrator… Even though that’s not what I’m doing now, I still keep a sketch book where all the little creatures I dream up reside. Some of my favorites make it out of the sketch book and into the real world!
And, holy smokes, your illustrations are amazing! (check out Dawn’s Notebook to see more!)
Describe your average day.
Wake up, and take a garden stroll with the dogs. Breakfast with the hubby, and off to work (the day job!). Lunch at home with the dogs, and back to work. Dinner at home with the family, and one last garden stroll with the dogs before I retire to the sewing machine, knitting, or laptop and a good TV show (usually something SciFi)… then off to bed!
What are your favorite materials to use?
Local wool, satin ribbon, and any little treasures I can find (like antique ceramic buttons, or handmade glass eyes!)
Describe what’s in your ‘tool box’. What’s crucial to your craft?
Scraps! I get inspired by little bits left over from whatever… and I love making something wonderful from essentially nothing!
What’s your studio space like?
A MESS… but that’s where the genius happens!
What’s your absolute favorite thing you’ve made?
That’s easy, it’s always the latest thing I’m working on!
Tell me… do you have any other hobbies? Crafts you like to do? Do you make things for yourself, or is all of your energy devoted to the business of plush making?
I love to sew: clothes, drapes, quilts, dog beds, whatever. Then there’s knitting, painting, embroidering, I also keep flower and veggie gardens, … and baking!
Really, I’m always busy…
Where do you live now? What’s the best thing about your town? If you could live anywhere, where would you live?
I’m in Wayne PA, which is a quiet suburb of Philadelphia. I love where I live now because I have family nearby, but if I could live anywhere… Both Capri and Bermuda are top of the list!
oooh… I second Bermuda!
Where can we find you?
Thanks for the interview! And thanks for joining us, everyone! Come back tomorrow!