Craft Cubed Presents: Rhain DiPillla | Craft Horder at Kyneton Craftery
Learn a new craft you didn’t know you needed in your life, or just join one of the social craft sessions and share your knowledge at Kyneton Craftery. Kyneton Craftery is all about a dedicated craft space for all to feel at home in. Plus unlike your pet, children, or spouse they won’t glaze over when you start showing off pictures of your most recent crafting project. Craft were lucky enough to chat to Rhain Di Pillla - Craft Horder at Kyneton Craftery ahead of their fantastic lineup of events for Craft Cubed festival.
What’s the significance of the handmade to you?
To me handmade means, made with skill and love. When we buy a handmade item we all know we are paying for someone to make it with love and with a skill we either do not have or don’t have the time to do and with materials of a higher quality. But to me, handmade takes me back to sitting in front of the fire as a family when I was a kid. My family didn’t have a TV when I was growing up, this wouldn’t be odd except I was born in the 80’s not the 40’s! So handmade and craft were just the normal for us, it was what we did at night to entertain ourselves. My mum made crafts to sell at the market like Gum Nut Babies, my dad worked on his leadlight and glass art, and my sister and I filled our evenings crafting along side them with our 60’s and 70’s instructional booklets beside us!
How would you describe your craft community?
We are so lucky at Kyneton Craftery to be situated within a regional independently owned multi-use arts space, The Old Auction House in Kyneton. Our studio looks out over the Main Gallery which changes every 3 weeks so there is always something different and inspiring out the window! We also have the most amazingly talented studio neighbours within the complex including a fine arts teacher, a costume designer as well as my family’s glass arts studio which I now work in with my father. Weekends are incredible in the space as we can have gallery openings for either or both gallery’s, workshops running in the glass studio, visiting tutors in the teaching space, as well as workshops at Kyneton Craftery, and the vibe in the space is intoxicating. Macedon Ranges is already such a creative community and Kyneton especially is known for the arts which makes it as great area to work as a creative. The space is surrounded by so many galleries and arts businesses, it is really inspiring atmosphere to grow a craft workshop!
What is your earliest craft memory?
My thing has always been paper; neatly sorted into binders, labelled with cost, supplier, and GSM. The collection would grow, be added to by friends and family, and then a project would arise and the perfect paper could be found for invitations, decorative art projects, and any manner of creative endeavor, and if the perfect paper was not already in the collection then it was time to go on the hunt for a new addition, or two!
What is your philosophy or motto when it comes to creativity?
Everyone is creative, they just might not have found the right craft yet! So many of our students in both the glass studio and the craft studio come in and say "I’m not creative". Normally what they mean is, either "my art teacher said I couldn’t draw or paint and therefore I am not creative", or "I once tried to be creative and someone said my work was not good enough and took all my confidence". Creativity is a mindset, yes there are incredible artists who are insanely creative, but there are so many more creatives in the world. Chefs, architects, make-up artists, actors, producers, singers, the list is endless! The first step to creativity is to stop being scared of ridicule from others but mostly ourselves. Then comes the fun part, try as many different crafts and activities until you find one where you can express yourself!
Where do you go in Melbourne for inspiration?
As I am based in Regional Victoria we tend to look around locally for inspiration. We are in a beautiful part of the world with Wombat State Forest on one side and Hanging Rock on the other, so we are never short on beautiful sunsets and scenery. We also have some incredible artist studios and private gardens which open to the public through out the year as well as historic buildings and incredible galleries to explore in the region.
What are you reading OR listening to at the moment?
I wish I had time to read but running a small business is more than a full-time job! If I had time I would love to get back to reading the many unread archeology books, old dictionaries and other books from the past, alongside some 'weird fiction'. I don’t listen to podcasts as my heckling drives everyone around me nuts and my music preference never really changes, chick rock, Italian and Spanish pop, and of course Leonard Cohen. Somehow though, it is never my turn to control the music…
How would you describe your studio or making environment?
I’m really lucky as I have 3 studios to work out of, it does however mean whatever I need is never in the same studio as me! Our glass studio is beautiful, it is open and spacious with loads of light! We custom made the benches so they are the right height to stand at and work and they are all on wheels so we can rearrange to suit class or project sizes! Kyneton Craftery has just decked out a brand new studio, it has been operating out of the hire-able teaching space at The Old Auction House for the last 18 months, so it is still all shiny and new! It is a really cosy space where everyone really just feels like they are at a friends place for a coffee, their friend just happens to have an amazing array of crafty goodness hidden in every nook and cranny of the room! Then there is my ‘home studio’, I think in the 4 years we have lived in our current house I may have done maybe an hour of crafting in there! It is packed to the roof with the craziest assortment of crafting junk you have ever seen and the pile just grows like by magic as my partner sneaks more in, something I would never do! So the kitchen table or the couch have become my crafting space and really who didn’t want alcohol ink stains on the kitchen bench, fabric glitter set permanently on the couch or polymer clay embedded in the carpet…
What other Craft Cubed events are you excited about?
As I love books I am excited to see two different book binding workshops on this years line up, Lay Flat Journal by Papermakers of Victoria and Japanese Stitching Cloth Sampler Book by Leanne O'Sullivan! I love seeing books created and repaired, even though we live in a technology driven society, books hold a special place for me.