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Get to know our Guest Host for Creative Expressions - Julia Watts

1.    We love your card creations. How did you get into card making and can you remember the very first thing you made?

It was about 12 years ago. I suddenly decided that I would like to make our Christmas Cards that year so, I went down to the local superstore. I bought some green A6 card blanks and envelopes, some toppers (all square ones), a Happy Christmas wood mounted stamp and a silver ink pad. They were very simple cards but I was totally hooked!

2.    The crafting world loves your designs and techniques, where do you get all your ideas from? 

That’s a hard one! I guess my ideas usually start with a stamp image, a die or a technique that I want to include on a card. Then everything else builds around that. Sometimes ideas come from other crafters – kind of a ‘that’s cool, I wonder if I could do that with this products instead’ moment. 

3.    When you're not crafting, what else do you like to do for fun? 

I don’t have much free time but I do love to go to the cinema or just going out for a coffee with a good friend for a catch up, which is a lovely luxury.

4.    What was your first "when I grow up I want to be...?" 

Not sure I can remember that far back! When I was a school, I was about 12 I think, I decided that I wanted to be a computer programmer. That’s actually what I did when I left school.

5.    Christmas is fast approaching, how do you like to spend your Christmas Day?

My ideal Christmas Day is spending time with my children and parents and a traditional Christmas lunch. There has to be board games on Christmas Day too!

6.    We've seen you on our screens quite a lot recently, do you still get nervous? How do you prepare yourself for live TV?

Actually, no, I don’t get nervous at all anymore. I was a little bit apprehensive before my first show on Hochanda as it was all new to me but I wasn’t actually nervous. I find the best way to be prepared for live TV is to be as organised as possible and then it’s easy to relax into it. There are occasions, of course, when I forget to take things but there is usually something else that I can use, just like at home.

7.    I'm sure everyone (including us) is dying to know, what 5 piece of kit can you not live without? 

Only 5! OK, then it would have to be – Rubber Stamps, Craft Sheet, Jet Black Archival Ink Pad, Spellbinders Tool-n-One and my pokey tool. 

8.    What is it you think make Hochanda different? 

Hochanda has a lovely atmosphere. Everyone seems to be really happy to be there and as a guest presenter, that makes me happy to be there too. It’s very clear that everyone working there is very passionate about the channel. It’s wonderful having the time to explain techniques fully. All the presenters are genuinely interested in what their guests are doing and their enthusiasm is infectious. There is so much variety on the channel too. I’ve spotted a few crafts that I’d love to try. 

9.    What does your studio look like? Give us a tour!  

Studio? Mmm? Well, I craft in my spare bedroom which does have a bed in it as I have to use it when my parents come to stay. I am not the tidiest crafter in the world, which is a bit of an understatement.
The main problem is space, Creative Expressions are constantly bringing out new products so I have to try and find space for it all - a good problem to be faced with though!
So, besides the bed, I have my craft table with my Grand Calibur, my computer desk with printer, the new Cricut Explore and my music docking station, then lots of shelving, drawer units and boxes.

10.    What can we expect to see from you in the coming months?  

I’ll try and demonstrate as many techniques as I can. We’ll be having lots of lovely new dies and embossing folders from Couture Creations.
We have our UK Trade Show in February and Creative Expressions are already working on lots of new products that will be launched then and we’ll be bringing them to you early next year.
I’m also hoping to bring a new craft to the channel that we’ve been planning for the past 18 months, so watch this space!

11.    Have you got any handy tips you could share? 

Enjoy what you do. You can do anything, it may require some practice but you can do it. It doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks of the result – if it pleases you then it’s perfect!

Love crafting? Tune in to Hochanda every day 24/7 for lots of fun and crafty demonstrations! Watch our programmes live >

You can also tune into Hochanda on Freeview channel 39, Sky channel 663 or Freesat 817.

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