We are very excited to share our next Featured Community Artist: Morena Hockley! Morena has been a long time contributor to the Walnut Hollow blog through our Walnut Hollow Influencers Program as well as worked in the craft industry for many years as a professional designer and blogger. We sat down with Morena to get a better idea of how she is inspired, why she creates, and where you can find more of her work. Here is her story:
Morena is the kind of girl who would rather have paint on her fingers than have a manicure. The Italian-American daughter of two DIYers, she and her husband strive to pass the tradition and value of handmade to their four children. Morena’s passion is using thrifted and inexpensive finds to craft designer inspired creations, and she enjoys creating colorful, bold pieces. She is on several design teams, but the best place to find her is at her blog, Morena’s Corner.
WH: Tell us a little about yourself:
MH: I enjoy making home décor items, usually with a vintage feel to them. I also dabble in jewelry making. You can expect to see colorful, retro-inspired pieces from me, often made with upcycled finds.
WH: What inspires your work?
MH: Images inspire me. I love to go through catalogs and websites to look at pictures. Often, a picture will jump out and me and stay stuck in my head until I can figure out how to make it myself!
WH: How did you get started making art?
MH: I can’t remember when I wasn’t crafting. My dad was an awesome DIYer and build stuff all the time (like my entire play kitchen!) My mom is a professional seamstress who made a lot of my clothes. So I was involved in many of their projects. As an elementary school teacher, I incorporated crafts into as many lessons as possible.
I really caught the crafting bug when we moved to Okinawa, Japan. I took several Japanese craft classes on base and fell in love with washi crafts. Between field trips to Japanese craft stores (amazing places!) and the unbelievable 100 Yen stores, I was never short on inspiration or supplies. One of the officer’s wives started a crafting group, and I began to learn about stamping and scrapbooking.
Once we got back to the States I continued papercrafting as a hobby. I’m OK at it, but it often feels like “work”. It was when we bought our house last year and I started refashioning and upcycling things that I found my passion. I started sharing some of my projects on Facebook, and friends started asking how I made things. I was encouraged by this and began regularly posting tutorials earlier this year. I’m tickled that my projects have been so well received, and I’m honored to be able to share with this great online crafting community that I’ve learned so much from!
WH: What is your favorite way to use wood in your art?
MH: I love to work with different textures, so my favorite way to use wood is as a base for a home decor project. I like to distress and crackle the wood finish, or decoupage paper onto it and grunge it up a little bit to give it a vintage look.
WH: What’s your favorite Walnut Hollow product to work with?
MH: I’m crazy about any of the rustic Walnut Hollow pieces!
WH: What do you do for “fun”, besides creating fabulous DIY projects and art?
MH: I love to read, play board games with my kids, watch The Walking Dead with my husband, and dabble in gardening!
WH: What’s the next step for your business and art?
MH: I’m thrilled and honored to design for some of my favorite craft companies, and I’m excited to be on some new teams this year. I hope to keep making connections in the crafting industry and eventually offer online classes or write a book about crafting.
WH: Where can we see more of your work?
Every day, thousands of artists across the globe use Walnut Hollow products and share them on the internet. We’ve seen incredible pyrography paintings, beautiful chalk painted home decor, adorable clay figures, and more created with our products and tools and now, we’d like to share the story behind those artists with you.
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