I met Becky Helms in person for the first time back in August, at Texas Style Council. We ran into each other at the Friday night clothing swap, where she had already picked up one of my swapped dresses. (It fit her so much better than it did me!!) She mentioned to me that I had featured her crafts, long ago, here on Miss Malaprop. We quickly bonded that weekend over a shared love of all things geeky.
Becky is a bit of a crafty renaissance woman! She has a gorgeous Etsy shop full of crocheted goodness, and she’s a talented illustrator. She posts all sorts of crafty fun on her blog, The Pink Samurai, in addition to her thrift store adventures! Oh, and did I mention we share a mutual love of dinosaurs?? So it should come as no surprise that Becky is my latest Girl Crush!
Tell me a little about yourself.
I’m blogger, maker and vintage lover living in Austin, TX with my husband and two cats. I just moved back to Texas after living on the East Coast for about 15 years, so I’m spending a lot of time rediscovering my home state.
Becky’s 365 project: she draws her outfits every day!
You’ve spent this year doing a 365 series of self-portraits, with a different drawing each day. What made you want to do this, and what do you think of the project now that it’s coming to a close soon?
I’m usually really bad at keeping up with daily challenges, and I really want to prove to myself that I could really do something like that all year. So rain or shine, through surgeries, vacations and moving across the country, I never missed a day! It’s been really fun seeing my style evolve and they’ve really helped me shape all of my drawing. It’s a little sad know the year’s almost over, but my husband and I are going to do a different daily drawing project next year that I’m really stoked for!
Becky sells her crochet infinity scarves & cowls on Etsy!
Have you always been crafty? What are your first memories of making things?
Crafting has always been a part of my life. My mom was always making something and encouraged my creativity. I remember trips to the craft store and those little plastic stained-glass toys were some of my most favorites. I’d paint the little sections very carefully and was always so proud when Mom would hang them in the window. Both of my Grandmothers also taught me to sew at an early age, so that’s always been a part of my life, too. As a child, a lot of our making was out of necessity, because we didn’t have a lot of money. But all those skills of craftiness and resourcefulness that I grew up with have been integral in my professional life and my blog definitely depends on them!
a recent crafty project by Becky: DIY Cat Stamp T-Shirt
What are your favorite current crafts to make? What is a crafty skill you’ve always wanted to learn, but have yet to try?
Screen printing and crochet are my most favorites! I could do those every day and never run out of ideas haha. I’ve always wanted to learn more about jewelry making. The extent of my experience is gluing and using jump rings. I’d love to learn more about different techniques and really explore it more as an art. There’s just already so much cool stuff out there, it’s intimidating!
I know you love thrift shopping, and you’ve been documenting your thrift store explorations on your blog since moving to Austin. Do you have any favorite thrift shops in Austin so far? What types of things do you look for when you go thrifting? Can you share some tips for newbie thrifters?
Austin has so many amazing thrift stores and vintage shops, it’s just silly. I had no idea it would be so saturated! I love going to Top Drawer Thrift and Out of the Past on Burnet Rd. They’ve got great prices and there’s so much to see in both. I’m usually on the look out for mid-century furniture (the perfect coffee table has been alluding me for years!) and fun vintage craft books and always clothes. I’d say the most important thrifting tip is to not be too disappointed if you don’t find what you’re looking for the first go around. Go often and always keep your eyes open!
What 5 things would you take with you to a deserted island?
- My husband ^_^
- A crochet hook…to make stuff out of the grasses and leaves.
- A giant bag full of pencils and paper (is that cheating? haha!)
- A copy of To Kill a Mockingbird
- A laptop with a solar charger and a copy of the original cut of Star Wars: A New Hope in the disc drive. (also probably cheating :P)