Creative Roots Challenge Week 7 - Coco Crochet Lee

Week 7 of the Creative Roots Challenge welcomes Lee of Coco Crochet Lee!
You can find this talented lady on Instagram here, and check out her website here.

Coco Crochet Lee Creative Roots Challenge

Week 7 Challenge: What are your maker goals? Share your top five, and the motivations behind them!

Prize: Hello Lavender Design Roma Stitch Marker Set

How to Enter: Post your challenge photo and tag @coco.crochet.lee + @knitbrooks, using hashtags #CreativeRootsChallenge + #CreativeRootsWeek7. You have until Monday, October 19th @ 1pm EST!

When you think about why you knit/crochet/dye, what really stands out as the reason? And knowing the reason, what do you hope to see yourself doing with it in the future? 

Some of our goals are big, and some of them are teeny tiny. All of them are important to moving us forward as Makers! Whether your daily goal is just to carve out some time to work on your fiber arts or something more ambitious, writing down your goals can have a big effect on ensuring they get done.

Coco Crochet Lee Creative Roots Challenge

 Hi everyone! I started CoCo Crochet Lee when my babies were small so that I could use crocheting to get my creativity out. I had gone to University for Visual Arts and being a new mom meant that I had less time to paint and draw. I found crocheting relaxing, baby-friendly, and challenging! 

It eventually led to applying for an entry level position with a crochet magazine, and after a time, becoming Assistant Editor. I then moved on to work with Annie’s, a large fiber arts company. Since then I have had so many wonderful opportunities in the Fiber Arts field to build CoCo Crochet Lee in to a full-time business in itself, and crocheting and designing has become my every day job. I love every minute of it!

 Coco Crochet Lee Q&A

Coco Crochet Lee Creative Roots Challenge

When you first started your maker journey, what was your goal? How has it changed?
When I first started my maker journey, I was a young mom just making for the sake of making. It was a delightful discovery to find out that the things I was making could turn into something bigger and even lucrative! The goal of carving out a living from my Fiber Arts work hasn’t changed from the beginning of my journey so much, but the kind of work I do has changed and evolved. As I continued to work hard, opportunities to branch out presented themselves and I was able to grow along with them! 

What is your favourite inspirational (or creativity-related) quote?
Oh gosh, that’s hard. Let’s go with Michael Scott from the Office - ‘I knew exactly what to do. But in a much more real sense I had no idea what to do.’ I love this one because it just makes me laugh and is so ‘me’. I often find myself learning as I go, or learning when I’m already part of a situation. And that’s okay, because even when we think we know everything, we really don’t, right? 

What is your main creative struggle, and how do you work through it?
I think my main struggle is that I want to do EVERYTHING and I don’t have time. I sometimes put too much on my plate and then stress about it because I don’t want to take anything off of it. Admitting I’m not a super human untouched by time constraints is difficult for me. I wish I had twice the amount of time and triple the amount of coffee lol. 

Tell us about a total maker FAIL. What did you learn from it, and how did that failure help you grow? 
A total maker fail….hmmmm…. Trying to think of one in particular is so hard because we all make mistakes all the time. I know I do! Where you get that feeling of a huge wave of dread that starts at your toes, and rushes up to your face making it burn with embarrassment. It happens. But I think being kind to ourselves, and acknowledging that we’re not only human, but often handling all aspects of our businesses solo needs to be stronger than the feeling of a fail. If you wrote down everything you were currently handling in your life from mom, to designer, to website creator, to writer, and then wrote down what the fail was you would be like, ‘well, no wonder! Look at all the cool stuff you have going on!’ Anyone would drop something from time to time. 

What do you feel has been your biggest accomplishment? 
I know the answer to this one right away! I am so so so proud to have been able to support my family financially with my work so that my husband/best friend Sean could go back to school full time. He was working a retail job that he hated while I grew my business and raised our babies, and when I was able to turn around and do this full time, it was one of the best days of my entire life. He applied for University as a returning adult student, and when he got the acceptance letter, we both cried, it was the best day. He was so happy! It was his dream to go back, and we were able to do it together. I’m not crying, YOU’RE crying lol. He’s almost done, by the way! He’s in his final year now! 

What is one goal you’re working towards right now?
Right now I am working towards the goal of being kinder to myself and enjoying the moment I am in. I often find myself chasing the next big thing, and forgetting that going back a few years ago or so, I would have never dreamed of doing what I am doing today! Learning to appreciate what I have right now is something I want to get better at. 

Name three creative people who inspire you, and why?
Reshma from @hellolavenderdesign - she knits the most beautiful sweaters and she’s so fast! Not only that but I love all of her stitch markers and jewelry that she posts, she’s so amazing.

I’m fascinated by Scottish Artist, Sila Gur @jolly_hoops. Her embroidery is just mesmerizing, and so life-like. I love the way she uses colour!

And for the third I would say @cosmic_crochet_creations because Nkese is so fierce and stunning! I wish I had half the amount of confidence that radiates off of her when she posts. She is goals. 

What is your best piece of advice for someone who has lost their creative mojo?
I would definitely say try switching it up with something different! I love knitting, and also drawing/lettering. Sometimes I need a break from what I’m working on to immerse myself in something completely different. 

Coco Crochet Lee Creative Roots Challenge

Share five fun non-maker-related facts!

  1. I am French-Canadian, and my maiden name before I was married was Léger - meaning ‘lightweight’. I think it’s hilarious because I am what my husband calls a ‘one-drink-wonder’ or a ‘lightweight’. 

  2. I went to University for Visual Arts & Communication Studies, so I used to do big oil paintings, and massive chalk drawings. I haven’t painted in years and I miss it! 

  3. I love dinosaurs. The first time I saw a real dinosaur fossil in Chicago, I cried, and called my brother who also loves dinosaurs to share my happiness with him. I was 24 years old, not a child lol.

  4. I collect enamel pins, and have a lot of them. I get really happy when I get new ones.

  5. I have a ridiculous sense of humour and I often can’t help but make dumb jokes even when the situation doesn’t call for it. I have to constantly remind myself in serious situations that now is not the time for dumb dad-jokes. When facebook and IG released Gif comments, I felt so seen lol. I am a top-notch Gif conversationalist, it’s my love language. 

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