Textiles Artist Turned Her Passion Into a Creative Business
We’d like to welcome drum rolll…..dun dun dunnn…. Alice Hume, a woven textile artist, to the interview podium. *crowd roars and someone throws their knickers at us*
For many of us, it’s a dream to work in a job you love and actually getting paid bucks for it is a mega bonus. Here at Madhat Girls, we jump into the world of Vanderhume to find out what it’s like to be an artist, a one-woman business and a creative entrepreneur. She shows us that forging a career out of her creative skill, hobby and passion – crafting her own Textiles – is totally achievable 🏆 We check in with her to gain some savvy creative advice for our budding hustlers out there.
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Proud of #marchmeetthemaker I’m so grateful that I get to create full-time and be my own boss, I absolutely love what I do, teaching others and making whatever makes my heart sing. I get to do all of this in my amazing studio space at @hotwallsstudios alongside other talented artists I’m so grateful to be challenged, to grow and also have the opportunity for incredible collaborations. Here is some recent work featured on @theskinnedkneecollective new rainbow issue, the sun, the rain and the rainbow made with copper, linen, silk and cotton
Alice hosts an incredibly varied and impressive portfolio and is always woven into many projects at any given time. Weaving is one of the oldest surviving crafts in the world. It involves interlinking vertical threads with horizontal threads and can be done either by hand or machinery.
Having exhibited at numerous exhibitions, she’s worked with top clients like All Birds, Soho House, Wilderness Festival, We Work and Facebook to provide fun-packed creative workshops teaching the art of Macrame. Her attendees leave each workshop with their own creations of Wallhangings, Bracelets, Plant Pot hangers and a sense of serene accomplishment.
She is currently a resident artist at Hotwalls Studios, which is an impressive conversion of the old barracks on the Portsmouth seafront. From her studios, she also runs Hume’s Looms Macramé and Weave workshops and clubs. Hotwalls also home a community of other fantastic artists who are often in their studios working away and will happily talk you through all of their amazing work 🙂
We’re itching to know more about you Alice! 👀
1. Can you describe Hume’s Looms in one sentence!
My work is about collaborating with other artists and creating sustainable bespoke textiles inspired by culture, whilst building a weaving community.
2. How long did it take and what did you do to form such a solid community of Macramers?
I started macrame back in 2012 during my third year at university. In 2016 I successfully obtained a studio at Hotwalls in Old Portsmouth, this was when I started my creative business and workshops. Since I have been running Macrame Workshops in my studio, at festivals and for huge corporate companies. It’s taken over 3 years full-time at my studio to get where I am, and I could not imagine myself doing anything else!
3. How did people hear about your course?
People hear about my workshops from Craft Courses, which is where I find 90% of my customers and also occasionally from Instagram and Facebook. I also promote them on the events section on Hotwalls Studios website and posters in my window and get a lot of drop-in bookings. In my studio, I have a sign-up sheet for my Mailchimp which really helps. I send out monthly workshop dates. It’s really important to find out where you are getting your customers and ensure you keep it up to date.
I’m quite new to Pinterest and only recently made it into a business account, it really works as people are finding my website through it.
4. What are you currently working on and how did you get that gig? Any sneaky previews?
I’m currently in Japan in Osaka on a weaving course using Saori looms, I absolutely love it. This type of weaving is something I have never done before, and the philosophy is to weave without a plan and be experimental.
It’s my first time and I’m learning so much. I also had the opportunity to be a part of the Japanese Textiles and Craft Festival in London last month. I exhibited some of my work and also ran some Japanese inspired Macrame Workshops. I’m also really excited to create a new collection inspired by Japan when I get back in December.
5. How an earth do you survive whilst holding only 2 workshops a month?
I run weave workshops 2-3 times a month and a macrame pot hanger workshop once a month. These pay for my studio rent, bills and my life. This takes the pressure off selling my pieces so I have the freedom to create in my studio and not worry about money.
One weave workshop covers my studio rent, and another covers my life, bills, rent etc.
6. What gave you the idea of doing workshops in the first place? What was your first ever one like?
Teaching weave workshops is something I’ve always wanted to do, and in 2015 my dad and I started creating handmade frame Looms out of me and my sister’s childhood bunk bed. I made a few samples on them, took photographs and listed my workshops onto Craft Courses. My first workshop I was so nervous, I have no previous teaching experience so I contacted another weave workshop teacher and she said to break it down like a step by step guide. My first workshop I only had two people booked and one of the ladies still attends my weave club. People from all over the country attend my workshops, I’ve had students from Bristol, Brighton, London, Kent and Peterborough.
7. If there was one piece of advice (as a professional) could give to yourself, when you were starting out, what would it be?
“It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things”Leonardo Da Vinchi
I always love this quote by Leonardo Da Vinci. It’s so important to put yourself out there, make connections and grab all opportunities as you don’t know what they could lead to.
My advice would be back then to be brave and go out and happen to things.
Find out more
We just can’t get enough of her beautifully-crafted, eyegasmic tribal-vibed Instagram. So, if you’d like to start a stalk-mission on Alice you can visit her website or her studio in Hotwalls. We went to see her in person when she exhibited at the Japanese Textile Festival last month and we definitely urge you to see her in any future exhibitions.
She will also be exhibiting at our very own The Art of Working Women Exhibition which you sign up for a FREE ticket now:
Find out more about her down below!