The practice of embroidery is already delicate in nature, so when the artwork itself is on little baby booties or Peter Pan collars, the sweetness factor is off the charts! Natalie Wang, of Lesong616, uses old school crafting practices that your grandma might have taught you, to create dreamy, detailed works of art. Her work invokes an instant sense of calm. Lavender embroidered on a little purse is something we all need in our lives, don’t you agree? Have a read about this lovely maker and her experiences at our markets!
Can you tell us a little bit about who you are and what you do? Hi, everyone, I’m Natalie, I come from Shanghai. I used to work in an advertising company as a graphic designer.
Why do you do what you do? I have a history and interest in design. I love everything about beauty and things that are handmade. So, when I quit my job in 2010 I started something I am really interested in. I enjoy making things and I create using patchwork and embroidery. I didn’t have the time for these practices before.
Where did you learn to make things? Did someone teach you embroidery, or are you self-taught? Have you been making things since you were a child? When I was a little girl I was always interested with knitting and cross-stitch. I started to learn the skills from some magazines and technical books. The more I learned, I felt I need more specific techniques. I then chose a Japanese embroidery institution in Shanghai a few years ago. I also think there is no end to learning.
Can you tell us about what you make? And how do you come to choose the designs? It all depends on what I want to make at that time, normally I will choose a subject like Christmas, Mother’s Day… However, I really enjoy making cute, fancy things.
Who are some other artists, crafters, creatives that you love? And why? This is a hard question to answer because I am always inspired by so many artists surround this world. But my work is mainly affected by Japanese, French, and Eastern European artists.
What excites you? When I get new ideas or something I create ends up as perfectly as I’d hoped it would be when finished!
We think of a rummage stall as a mini shopfront, how do you make your rummage stall your own? Of course, the priority is your products. And then I think the display is very important. I have collected some deco to match my wares. The communication also is a key factor to sell your wares. It’s important to tell your potential customers about your wares as much as possible. Things like: materials and techniques. I find that most of them like to hear about the story behind an item and how much work went into it. Unfortunately, my English is a bit of a barrier, I hope to improve this in the future.
What do you like about attending Suitcase Rummage? The lively atmosphere, the cheap stall cost, and friendly and helpful market staff!
What is the next step for you? What does the future hold? I’m planning to run a shop on Etsy and I would like to go to England to learn embroidery techniques once I save enough money.
What’s your favourite place or thing to do in your city? I like to wander the small streets in Shanghai to find some lovely shops. In Brisbane I like the suburbs Paddington and West End.
Where we can we find and follow you? For now, I only have Instagram: @lesong616