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Thai-born artist, Jo, shares her embroidery, sketching and watercolour skills through original design DIY modern embroidery kits, tutorials and demonstrations online and from her new Geelong store

07 October 2020

Designer Spotlight: Hooray Hoop

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Self-taught embroiderer, sketcher, and watercolourist, Jo: ‘I share my passions through my embroidery kits, YouTube  tutorials, and demonstrate at events and workshops’

Hello, my name is Jo Cashmore. I am a Thai born, self-taught artist. I live in Geelong, Australia. I am an embroider, sketcher and watercolour painter. I combined all my skills into my embroidery work. I share my passions through my embroidery kits, Youtube tutorials and demonstrate at events and workshops.

‘Protea 3’ original embroidery design by Hooray Hoop, available as a DIY embroidery kit.

I am a solo artist. Embroidery has been my side hustle, working from home and doing markets for nearly 4 years. Exciting much, I am now turning it to my full-time business. I have just opened a Hooray Hoop Embroidery Shop on Pakington Street in Geelong early this month! It is located at the Pakington Village, shop 4/111 Pakington Street (just opposite the Barking Dog).

Thai-born artist, Jo, shares her embroidery, sketching and watercolour skills through original design DIY modern embroidery kits, tutorials and demonstrations online and from her new Geelong store

My home studio is in the front room. It used to be our main bedroom but one lovely afternoon the outside blind decided to fall down and what I saw was beautiful sunlight coming through with the full view of the flowers from our front garden. We swapped the bedroom to the back that night!

‘Cookie the Kookaburra’ original modern embroidery design by Hooray Hoop, available as a DIY embroidery kit: ‘Inspiration for my work is drawn from Australian native plants and animals’

Inspiration for my work is drawn from Australian native plants and animals. The beautiful beaches around Geelong and the Great Ocean Road.

A photo of 5 women holding hands, walking away from the camera, and Jo’s embroidered interpretation of the same scene made as very personal commission piece for a client.’

I often take photos (with my phone) when I see things different, beautiful, or creative. I store them on my computer. When I get the idea (the aha moment) that I could turn them to something new I go through them again, sketch the picture up and paint with watercolour along with DMC thread colour selection. I then transfer the picture to calico cotton and stitch.

Closeup view of Jo pulling threads to create 3 dimensional texture in an Australian bottlebrush botanical embroidery design.

Often more new ideas come along during the stitching process eg: changing colour or adding some 3D texture.

Jo embroidering tactile yellow textures into a Wattle embroidery design: ‘Stitching is a memory of my childhood… we didn’t have much, so everything we wanted had to be started from scratch.’

Stitching is a memory of my childhood. I lived in a small village in the North of Thailand. We didn’t have much, so everything we wanted had to be started from scratch. We grew cotton on our farm and my Mum took me to the market to buy off-cut materials and we stitched them up to make mattresses and doonas, which we used for our bedding.

A lineal embroidered design of a house façade by Hooray Hoop, featuring bright, textured flowers in the front garden

My grandma was a weaver. I remember from a very young age, playing under her weaving machine with my 2 cousins while our parents went to work on the farm. It always makes me smile when I think about those times.

Detailed view of a Wattle embroidery in progress as Jo shows how to wrap thread around the needle to achieve a 3D textured stitch: ‘Handmade made us become the thoughtful people’

As I grew up my life became busy with study and work. I hadn’t done any stitching for a long time. I lost my mum in late 2015. I was lost for a while. In May 2016 I became strong enough that I could start being creative again.

A quirky modern embroidery hoop by Hooray Hoop featuring a long haired girl eating spaghetti or noodles

After she passed away, I bought her favourite top home and I decided to put it in a picture frame (like how the footy fans do with their favourite player top). I noticed she stitched that top and was therefore able to study her work. It’s quite an old top which must have been torn, and which she fixed with her rough stitching (her eyesight had gone bad). That’s when I knew she was giving me a message that I should bring back my stitching skill.

Jo’s studio in her newly opened Geelong embroidery store: ‘We need to bring back our slow handmade life’

Handmade made us become the thoughtful people. When we make something for someone, we put a lot of thoughts into it… what they like, what to use. When we sell something handmade, we work hard to find our own unique niche. When we see people selling handmade, we respect their time and effort.

A commissioned embroidery portrait of four friends by Hooray Hoop

Our world is moving a bit too fast lately. We need to bring back our slow handmade life. Yes, things will take longer to make. The longer they take, the longer the love we will have with that item. We will have less items that we don’t need and we will have more times (while waiting for things to get made) with the people we love.

A selection of Jo’s embroidery hoop in the window of her new embroidery store in Geelong, Victoria, with the words ‘You may say I’m a dreamer but I’m not the only one I hope someday you’ll join us’ in script across the glass.

I love that Madeit believe in us. Madeit know how much love we put in our work and they always there to support us.



Visit Hooray Hoop to find DIY kits in modern original designs for your next embroidery project: HoorayHoop

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