Describe your profession, with details on products, services, expertise and know how.
My name is Vicky Christodoulou and I am 57 years old. My craft is Wool Knitting which I started learning from the age of 7 years old and I practice this craft for over 10 years now. I currently have my own shop selling my creations and knitting equipment.
What materials do you use? Where and how you purchase them?
The materials I use is wool which I import from abroad and threads for decoration. These materials are natural and of best quality and of course sustainable.
Describe the techniques, the tools and the materials you use in your work.
The main tools are needles which are used to knit. They vary in size which is proportional to the thickness of the thread of the wool. These tools are new in production but traditional for many years. Knitting needles have not changed much.
The creative process:
Firstly, I decide the kind of piece I want to create, then the size and design. So, creation goes as a series of decisions starting from use, practicality, size, design, colors etc. The next step is to get the best tools for the specific piece I want to create, the size of the knitting needles, something that is determined by the width of the wool. Sometimes decoration is made with threads, so needles are very small. Other times, I use big needles for very large pieces and very thick wool.
What is your “ideal” client’s profile?
There isn’t any specific target group for clients and my shop it is rather open for everybody who want to buy wool products and knitting equipment. At my shop we also provide knitting lessons and with this respect I also target people who want to learn something new.
I would like to expand my products to businesses.
At what age and under what circumstances did you start this job?
I started learning wool knitting at the age of 7 and my first teacher was my mother. This craft as all crafts needs patience, good will, passion and a good teacher that will mentor you. It doesn’t need formal education or university education. Of course, firstly it is best to love the craft and have passion for it. Personally, I was really fascinated by the fact that my mother, who knitted many interesting and useful pieces, had the chance to create something new with her skills. As a result I wanted the same chance and skills to create all the time, for myself and other people.
Where and how long have you been trained before you were ready to start your own business? In a training institute, with a craftsman or both? What do you think is the best way to learn your job today? Schools, training with craftsmen …?
What role do “talent” and “creativity” play in your profession?
And what about innovation, what are the changes since you started? Do you use new materials, tools, or processes in manufacturing and marketing? What is the impact of innovation on your performance? How could your profession be even more innovative?
Innovation resides in the design and combination of several materials. For example, there is the possibility of creating very interesting art pieces with knitting and not only products for daily use like clothes, gloves etc.
What is the best way to learn your profession?
What is your message to younger generations who might choose your profession?
The level of technology is tremendous and even though the new generation uses technology, is born in it, it is very good to take breaks sometimes and learn something traditional and new for them in order to be in the position of having the skills to create. Creating with your own hands can be very fulfilling and relaxing at the same time.
I recommend and promote knitting as a profession. Basic requirements is to be passionate and love the craft and additionally create a basis for support by the market of your own hand creations.