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Maker Monday: Lucretia McFaul

At the peak of the pandemic, when I was unemployed and my anxiety was at an all-time high, I turned to working with my hands. I was coming out of working as a full-time cook and wasn't sure where to focus all of my energy. I tried all the classics: baking bread, knitting, gardening, etc. It wasn't until I started sewing that I finally settled.

What is art to you personally?

I believe any form of self-expression is a valid manifestation of art.

Why do you create? What is your spark?

I have always wrestled with my self-worth, and so much of it hinges on how clothes fit my body. The process of creating my own garments, from conceptualization to execution, is so incredibly rewarding.

How have your life experiences influenced your art style?

Again, so many of the things I do are dictated by how I want my body to be perceived. As someone who has never felt comfortable with the shape or hyper-sexualization of my body, almost everything I make is loose-fitting. In making my own clothes I'm able to further explore my gender identity and in turn, learn to reject the notion that certain bodies are better than others.

Were you born an artist or made an artist?

Both my parents were career performance artists, so creative pursuits always made more sense to me. Growing up, I spent a lot of time backstage and in the green rooms of various theatres, surrounded by costumes and big personalities. I remember being fourteen and begging my mom to let me be the costume designer for her third Tom Waits tribute show. Thinking back on it now, it makes sense that I find so much comfort in creating.

Name a material that you refuse to work with.

New fabrics. All the fabric that I buy is thrifted. I refuse to support the overproduction of microplastics by buying a brand new nylon or polyester. 10/10 times I can find exactly what I need at Renaissance or Chaînon.

Which of the pieces you've created is your favorite?

Probably my robes. I started watching The Sopranos early in the pandemic and was immediately inspired to dress like a lounging Italian mob wife.

How have other artists influenced your work?

Anytime I come across another artist online I immediately feel inspired to try a littler harder and to challenge myself. I feel like theres often a domino effect amongst artists where when you simply see another creating you are more inspired to create yourself.

How would you describe your aesthetic?

I recently texted a close friend and asked her to describe my aesthetic and she simply responded with a link to the song One Summer's Day from the movie Spirited Away.

What keeps you up at night?

The climate crisis and the relevance of wet bulb temperature.

Who is your dream collaborator?

I see so many talented creators online that I would love to work with, but the first person that comes to mind is Julian Carter. You can find him on Tik Tok making sweet DIY and upcycling content.

A newspaper article is written about you. What is the headline?

"Yet another Gen Z turns to crafting for comfort amidst multiple global crises."

Have you taken classes or are you self taught?

I've never paid for sewing class or gone to fashion school, but I wouldn't say I'm self taught. When I was first learning (and even still) I turned to so many online creators for their guidance. Some of my favourites include @withwendy, @quaintbawse, @donlarrie_couture, @happilydressed, and @theessentialsclub.

Where do you find inspiration?

Honestly online, especially on Instagram and Tik Tok. There are so many people out there with epic looks that I would love to recreate for myself.

Do you sell the clothing you make? I work on commission. If you see something that you would like made for you or you have an idea of something you would like custom made, I will happily work with you to create it!

What is something in your creative process that you're working to improve?

I tend to judge myself and the things I make pretty harshly. If I feel like something isn't good enough or things aren't going the way I want them to, I'll abandon the project before it's finished. This leads to wasted materials and generally feeling like a failure. I'm trying my best to slow down and analyze my mistakes so that I can backtrack and eventually finish the project.

Follow Lucy!

Instagram: Spooky Bobbin

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