We’re really excited to introduce you to to Phillip (@SirPurlGrey) - our Ribblr of the week!
Hey Phillip! Please tell us a bit about yourself - how did you get into crafting?
My name is Phillip and I started crocheting about 10 years ago in 2011, which was around the same time that I became a high school math teacher. As a new teacher, (Umbreon) for a gift but the double pointed needles were too fussy and I didn’t like how it looked knitted. I looked around online and I found a crochet pattern for the same Pokemon. I didn’t know how to crochet at the time but I read every tutorial I could find, mastered the magic ring, and through much perseverance, I had crocheted my first Pokemon. From then on, I became obsessed with amigurumi and I began crocheting my favourite Pokemon from patterns that I found online, learning many techniques along the way. Shortly after, I started experimenting with shapes to create patterns of my own for animals and characters that I wanted to make but there were no existing patterns for.
That’s fantastic! So is Crochet your main craft?
While I can knit and crochet, I prefer crocheting as the projects that I like to make are three-dimensional and structural. For me, it is much easier to improvise and develop the shapes that I want with crochet because you can immediately see how the piece is forming. I also like fast projects that can be completed in a sitting or two and amigurumi is perfect for that.
What was the longest project you worked on?
The project that took the longest time to complete was a Pokemon called Arceus. The piece measures a foot and a half tall and is made up of too many pieces to count. At the time, I found it too difficult to write down the pattern as I was crocheting it so sadly, there will only be one in existence.
That’s impressive! How about the shortest project?
The shortest project is actually the sushi amigurumi that I just released a pattern for on Ribblr! Each sushi takes me about 45 min to 1 hour to complete.
What’s the most recent project you’ve worked on?
My most recent project is an amigurumi version of my tattoo artist’s dog that I made as a gift for him. I love seeing the joy on someone’s face when they receive a crocheted doppelganger of their beloved pet!
That’s such a great gift! Which of your designs are you most proud of?
A pair of my favourite designs are the Pokemon Magikarp and Gyarados. These were done as a commission for a friend and I was very intimidated at the thought of translating those designs into crochet. There were definitely challenges along the way but they were all surmountable and I’m very happy with how they came out.
What is your usual process of designing? How do you start working on a new piece?
When I am designing a piece, usually an animal or a critter from a TV show or video game, I will find a few reference pictures from as many angles as I can. Once I have at least the front, profile, and back views of the subject, I grab a hook and yarn and jump right into crocheting it. Some crochet designers like to draw out what they’re making first but I like to start crocheting right away. Of course there are lots of mistakes and frogging along the way but I like to think about crocheting similar to how an artist sketches and erases their drawings as it develops. As a teacher, I always tell my students that mistakes shouldn’t be seen as a negative thing but as learning opportunities to improve your craft.
Great point! We completely agree. Where do you draw inspiration from?
I draw a lot of inspiration from animals in real life and from video games and TV. Growing up, I have always loved learning about animals in school, from books and nature documentaries. Animals come in so many different shapes and sizes and I love exploring how I can replicate them in amigurumi form.
Time for some pop culture! Any favorite song, book or movie you would like to recommend?
My favourite songs come from the video game soundtracks of my childhood which includes Super Mario, Donkey Kong Country, Pokemon, and The Legend of Zelda. On the less nerdy side of my music tendencies, I love Lizzo and BTS. My song of the summer has been Rumours by Lizzo ft. Cardi B.
Any funny story that happened to your recently?
I find that as I get older, I tend to forget what my age is. Before my most recent birthday, I kept telling people that I was turning 35 but after realizing that I was only turning 34 because my mom had corrected me, I spent a week apologizing and correcting what I told everyone about how old I actually was.
What is your favorite feature on Ribblr?
My favourite feature on Ribblr is the ease of inputting and editing my crocheting patterns. It’s a very small detail but I love that when I add a new row/round, it automatically changes the row/round number. When I am typing out a pattern, I make mistakes where I mislabel row/round numbers all the time so I am very thankful that the Ribblr keeps track for me.
Finally, the stage is yours - pay it forward with a shoutout to fellow Ribblrs!
I discovered Ribblr through my fellow crochet designers Carrie (@ohanacraft) and Amy (@curiouspapaya). They have such distinct amigurumi styles and it’s always a joy to see their new makes.
That’s awesome. Thank you for sharing Phillip!
Check out Phillip’s shop - SirPurlGrey Amigurumi:
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