It is our pleasure to introduce Helen Orombi of ElegantCrochets as this week's Featured Artist. Helen crochets a wide variety of apparel and accessories from her home in Pennsylvania.
What is your favorite Bible verse?
|Offwhite Kimono Cardigan|
Coupon Code FIRSTIME10 for 10% off in Helen's shop.
Introduction to you:
I am Helen, originally from Uganda, came to the US for graduate studies and I have been here for 14 years now. I live in Philadelphia where I studied theology and psychology subsequently, I am a marriage and family therapist by profession but last year I took a Sabbatical from practice to replenish myself. Self -care is one of the most important practices for a therapist and crocheting/knitting is very therapeutic and restorative for me.
|Green Crocheted Scarf with Fringe|
How did you get your start on Etsy?
I have always crocheted for friends and family, I started at the age of 10. My mother taught me how to knit, crochet, and embroider, but crochet has always been my first love. She would bring me a completed project and ask me to make it, thus I learnt how to crochet by sight. I can read crochet charts but not patterns so I make up my own patterns. Since I loved crochet, someone suggested I sell on Etsy which I opened in 2007 but didn’t have the courage to put anything up until 2008. I crocheted as a hobby and for therapeutic purpose until Fall of last year. As a therapist I see and hear very difficult things and crochet is a wonderful outlet that helps me process what I have heard and in my own way make sense of it. Some of the pieces were created specifically after a difficult session. Since last Fall I have been crocheting and knitting fulltime. I begin practice again at the end of the year so my time will be divided between crochet and therapy.
How did you choose your shop name?
Whenever I would make items for family and friends the feedback I would get was that my work was elegant, so I decided to call my shop elegantcrochets to reflect the style I want to create.
|Blue & Green Ruana Poncho|
What does a typical day look like for you?
I am an early bird, a habit I picked up from my boarding school days, so I am up by 4.30- 5:00am, make some coffee, do my devotional and check email. I complete orders that need to go out in the morning that I didn’t get the time to finish from the day before, package them and leave them for the mail lady to pick them up. Between 7 - 9am depending on how much I have to get done, I go out for my morning walks.
By 9am or 10am I’m in my studio to begin the day which includes: filling orders if I have them and if I don’t I create new designs. Creating new designs is my favorite part of my work, choosing the colors, deciding on the shapes and designs, it’s the most restorative part of my process and I feel like I am recreating a part of who I am. If I have a lot of orders, I dedicate one day out of the week just to create a new design and this helps replenish me after a long week of filling orders. When I am done, I take pictures of my clothing, list items on Etsy and promote them on the teams I am in. I typically spend 8-9 hours a day crocheting/Knitting sometimes more if I have a lot of orders. I do this while watching a good British mystery (my favorites).
Since I am early to rise I also go to bed early, on a typical day I am in bed by 9pm latest 10.
|Cream Flower Poncho|
If you could be anywhere in the world for one day, where would it be?
What is your favorite Bible verse?
What is your favorite Etsy item listing to feature?
That’s a hard one I have two favorites, my colorful halter top
Kimono sleeve cardigans
Where else can we find you on the Internet?