Podcasts: Stitcherystories & Wetalkfiber

Susan Weeks.
Gary Parr
 Do you get bored when stitching? Read on…  I have quite a low boredom threshold. When stitching at home, I like to alleviate potential boredom by listening to the radio, an audiobook (Auckland Libraries have a great selection you can download to your computer or phone), or music, mainly but not limited to, classical. However, my absolutely favourite things to listen to are two needlework podcasts. Why only two? Because these seem to be the only two which are post regularly and are created professionally.   Maybe I need to explain what a podcast is. Without getting too technical, which would bamboozle me and I suspect many other guild members, podcasts are audio or video files which have been uploaded to the internet and are available for anyone to listen to. You can subscribe to them so that whenever a new one is posted online, you will get an email alerting you. I subscribe to several but will review just the two needlework ones and supply the link

The first embroidery podcast I was fortunate to come across, is run by a delightful, bubbly English techie and embroidery enthusiast, Susan Weeks. Susan originally intended to podcast weekly, but she is a single mum and business woman so life sometimes gets in the way! Susan’s style is relaxed and friendly. Her podcasts are like sitting down to listen to a good gossip between good friends. She has set questions she likes to ask her guest which gives her interviews a bit of structure. I love getting an email letting me know she has posted a new one. Over the time she has been running Stitchery Stories, Susan has interviewed really interesting textile creatives, some well-known, others new to me. One which has really stuck with me is an American guy, Joe Mitchell, who taught himself tambour embroidery and now gets commissions from haute couture designers but he is just one example of the many interviews Susan has posted. You can easily access all her past podcasts and subscribe to new ones from the link below:


The other embroidery podcast I listen to is hosted by  American needle worker whose day job is editing marketing magazines. Gary Parr’s interview style is very different from Susan’s, which is nice. There is nothing like a bit of  variety.  
Gary posts twice weekly and to be honest, I often skip the mid-week podcast but if you are new to podcasting, give it a try. Just because it doesn’t appeal to me doesn’t mean you won’t like it. However, Gary’s weekend podcasts are great. Some interviewees lead the way (Philippa Turnbull and Alison Cole for example, who barely drew breath), others need a bit of coaxing but whichever, Gary handles it with panache. He comes across as a warm, interesting, interested and very keen embroiderer. Two of his better known interviewees recently have been Tanja Berlin and Trish Burr. Again, all his former podcasts are available from his home page. The link for it is below. 


I hope you give these podcasts a try. They are so very enjoyable. It’s like listening to a radio interview about something we love.

 Erica Marsden