This month, for the first spring 2016 installment in our delightful ongoing "Meet a Fellow Vintage blogger" series, I'm over-the-moon excited to be chatting with none other than my good online friend Carla W., from the wonderful blog Tiny.Angry.Crafts.
Not only is Carla sweet, caring and kindhearted, but she's an active member of our vintage blogging community who frequently visits other peoples' sites. I've had the pleasure of knowing Carla for a few years now and really admire her spirit, passion for the past, fabulous knitting skills, and diverse array of interests, many of which appear in her enjoyable blog posts.
Carla and I are both west coast girls, too (albeit on different sides of the 49th), which is just one of numerous points that we share in common. If you haven't encountered Carla and her blog before, or have and are every bit as keen as I was to learn more about this fabulous vintage fan, read on to get the lowdown on everything from some of her favourite vintage knitting pattern resources to her love of cosplay, how her site's name came to be, the fact that she wants to learn corsetry and so much more!
Inquiring minds want to know, as surely there must be a good one, what’s the story behind your very memorable blog name?
Haha! My sister accidentally came up with the name. I'm shorter than she is; 5ft2 to her 5ft8, so I'm Tiny to her. When I'm being good while crafting, my glasses are off, and I have a very stern looking face when I work, which looks Angry. And I'm always Crafting. She strung the words together one day while we were at the zoo, and it stuck.
How long have you been blogging for? Was there anything in particular that lead you launch Tiny Angry Crafts?
Oh goodness, I had to go into my blog and check, but I've been blogging since 2010. I initially started up this blog to show off a lot of knitting and crochet craft I had worked on and sold to go with my (sadly empty) Etsy shop. But, I had a letter writing blog a bit before this, and a LiveJournal.
What sorts of crafts are you currently drawn to the most?
I love knitting and crochet. I also am very drawn to embroidery and cross-stitch, but I don't get to work on it as much, sadly. And I'm an avid letter writer, I have a few pen-pals I write to.
Do you find that you get much time to devote to your crafting passions?
With school, not as much as I'd like to. But I'll steal away an hour or two while I'm working to take a breather, and work on my cardigan or crochet up some slippers.
How does crafting intersect with your love of the past?
I come from a very crafty family, my mother used to be a tailor and dressmaker, my father was a milliner's apprentice, my grandparents know their way around a needle and thread, and my grandmother's mother made a good portion of her (and her 5 siblings'!) clothes.
It's always humbling to know they were able to make something from almost nothing, and have lovely stories to recant about it.
Have you been living a vintage filled life for quite a while now? (And when did you first start wearing old school styles?)
Hmmm, I've been interested in vintage styles since I was about 10 years old. I blame my grandfather for constantly having Turner Classic Movies on the television. But I was a terribly shy person growing up, and was afraid of drawing attention to myself (which is ironic, because I dressed up like comic characters before I dressed vintage). I think I started gaining more confidence to dress up when I turned 22 or so. So not very long, actually!
What is/are your favourite decade(s)? Any reasons in particular why such is the case?
I really like the 1930s and 1940s in terms of 'Oh hey, I'm going to wear this 30s style today' or something. I find myself drawn to the necessity to create ones own clothing while all this stressful turmoil going on. And I also love how they look on me.
In terms of aesthetics, I really enjoy a lot of 1950s and early 1960s looks, but I very rarely wear them.
How (if applicable) has your style changed since you first got into vintage?
I've stopped covering myself up a lot for one. In high school and my late teens, you'd often find me bundled in a jacket, no matter the weather. I've learned to embrace how my shape is. I've began to wear more makeup, take better care of my clothes, learned what styles do and do not fit me, and have had a lot of fun trying new things with my hair!
Are there any yesteryear celebrities/notable figures whose style you especially admire?
So I'm not subjecting your readers to a list about 20 miles long, I'll list a few:
I absolutely adore Dorothy Dandridge, Josephine Baker, Eartha Kitt, and Lena Horne. They are so very important to me, being African American women who overcame not only rampant racism, but also sexism. How they all persevered in their craft, is a constant source of motivation to me.
Five crafting related items you’d take with you to a desert island?
Knitting needles, yarn, fabric, scissors, needles.
Do you tend to have a lot of WIPs on the go, or do you try to finish a project before moving on to the next?
Oh I'm sure if my family knew crafting slangs, they'd call me 'The Queen of WIPs'. I tend to get bored with a project, then will pop on to a new one. I eventually go back to some WIPs, if they're small enough.
I know it can be hard to choose, but if you had to pick one very favourite craft, what would it be for you?
Sewing. I went to school for it, and I've been doing it for most of my life. It's pretty much in my blood, haha!
Is there a craft (or really, any hobby) that you’d like to learn, but which you’ve not dabbled in yet?
I'd love to learn corsetry! Just to say 'Hey, I made a corset!' And it'll be a fun skill builder. I'd also love to learn to make faux armor with various plastics.
What are some of your favourite online crafting related resources (blogs, shops, how-to sites – anything you’d like to share)?
The Craftsy blog
By Gum, By Golly
The Vintage Pattern Files
The V&A 1940's knitting patterns
Knitting Help (This site is how I learned to knit my senior year of high school!)
You’re currently in school. Can you share a bit with us about what you’re studying and the direction you’re currently planning for your career?
I'm all set to graduate! I'm taking a course called 'Advanced Fashion Design' which has me (and 16 other classmates) making my own 3-5 garment collection. I've based mine on the 1930s, and it will debut at my schools fashion show in May! Career wise, there isn't a lot here in San Diego - and I'd love to get into theatre work along the line - so I'll just go where the wind takes me.
When not blogging, crafting, or going to school, what are some things we can find you doing?
Sleeping, playing with my dog, Prince, adventuring through my city!
Five words that you would use to describe yourself and five (others) that capture the spirit of your vintage wardrobe?
Myself: Quiet, inquisitive, kind, petite, and resourceful.
Wardrobe: Small, simple, colorful, dresses, cute.
And last, but not least, anything that you wish folks knew about you, but that they might not be aware of (about you) from your blog?
I mentioned I make costumes and wear them to comics conventions. The art is called Cosplay, and I've been doing it since 2007. It's what really kick started my love of sewing more, and sort of pushed me to going to school for fashion design. I plot to make a couple more cosplays for San Diego Comic Con, as well as for Comikaze, which might be from a few classic TV shows and movies!
Connect with Carla on the following sites:
Meet the past interviewees who have taken part in this delightful ongoing post series:
February 2015: Emileigh | March 2015: CiCi | April 2015: Helen Mae | May 2015: Esther | June 2015: Ms. Falcon |July 2015: Jessie, and Laurence & Sylvain| August 2015: Holly | September 2015: Rhia | October 2015: Franny | November 2015: Emily | December 2015: Porcelina | January 2016: Nora | February 2016: Kate
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Thank you very much for the terrific interview, Carla. It was an total joy talking with you and discovering more points that we share in common (for example, I would use those very same five words to describe myself, too). If you're not already following Tiny.Angry.Crafts, I highly recommend that you do so - Carla and her blog are a true delight!
I also really want to thank each and every one of you, my lovely readers, for the many wonderful comments that you shower each month's interviewees with, as well as the support you often show their blogs, social media sites, and when applicable, online shops, too.
One of my absolute favourite things is helping to bring members of the vintage community (all the more) together, very much including introducing those who may not have met online yet, and I feel really fortunate to have the chance to do so through this fun ongoing post series.
If you're an active member of the vintage blogging world who routinely interacts with others in our midst (and who hasn't appeared in this series yet) and would like to be interviewed for a future post here down the line, please don't hesitate to drop me an email anytime. I'd be thrilled to chat with you, too!