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Beci Orpin - Make and Do

Beci Orpin talks to me about her new Book, Make & Do

I think Beci Orpin is my spirit animal. The Aussie designer, artist and author has just launched book number three, Make & Do, which is jam-packed with 25 projects that are making my heart skip a beat. With so many artistic endeavours under her belt, she’s seriously inspiring me to make more at home.

I was lucky enough to ask the Orp-meister some questions about her new release, how she keeps her cats from destroying her projects and if there’s a fourth book in the works. Enjoy!

Beci Orpin - Make and Do

A third Beci Orpin book! Did you struggle to churn out projects on this one or did you have a hard elimination process to narrow it down to the final 25?

“I’m constantly keeping an eye out for DIY ideas so it was not a struggle at all. For each book (including this one) I’ve had more projects than I need, so some always get cut. If I continue in the same way then I could make a whole book of just the cut projects! (it would be a super weird book BTW; those projects are cut for a reason).”

What is it about making things for your home that appeals to you and are you running out of space? 

“I think having things you have made in your home (or anywhere really) gives it the upmost personality. It’s also incredibly satisfying to walk past something everyday and be all like “I did that – look how awesome it is” *pats on the back all round*. And yes, I’m running out of room, but I’m actually becoming less of a hoarder the older I become, so I’m pretty good at clearing things, so it doesn’t reach epic proportions”. 

Beci Orpin - Make and Do Project Project from Beci Orpin - Make and Do

There’s a very big-kid-at-heart vibe to your books, which aligns perfectly with my approach to life. You might be my spirit animal! 

“HA! Thanks. There are some times when I have sadly to grow up (tax, mortgage, contracts, yelling at kids), but on the whole I try and keep it pretty kid-like and funny. A good sense of humour is everything to me!”. 

The storage boxes and canvas baskets are two of my fave projects. Were there ones you were giddy over completing and some that were more laborious? 

“I was giddy over completing all of them. Putting together the projects is an intense process, so when you get to cross one off the list it’s pure elation! I really love how the Latch Hook Rug turned out – it took three of us four weeks to make that thing! But is was so worth it! Also the Kantha Patch Cushion is labour intensive, but is also really addictive. When I finished it I was really sad, so I’m working on a Kantha patch quilt now!”.

Beci Orpin Project from Make and Do

We get to see more of your studio in this book. Do you get to let loose a bit more here than at home in terms of decorating?

“Actually yes, i’m trying to have less (or more select) stuff in my house, but the studio is an anything-goes zone. I do have lots of storage in my studio, so everything has a place and it doesn’t get too out of control (much)”.

Being the crafty lady you are, do your kids realise they’re living in everyone’s childhood dream?

“My kids are funny – they rebel against my crafty ways by being obsessed by things like soccer and playstation. We do do quite a bit of drawing and making stuff, but it tends to be more spur of the moment than planned, and often ends up in the boy zone (we pretty much just make paper planes)”.

Make and Do by Beci Orpin

As an owner of two cats I have to ask: how do you keep yours from destroying your creations?

“OMG – cats are the naughtiest! One of them is super old so he just likes sleeping all day (Miso), but the other one is young (Tio) and he has destroyed many a pom-pom. I just end up putting anything I really love out of reach, or make extra pom-poms for Tio to destroy”. 

The big question, of course, is if a fourth book is on the horizon?

“HA! who knows!! I have lots of ideas… could happen! I need to sleep for a few months first though”. 

> Beci Orpin’s new book, Make & Do, is out November.
Beci also has a divine collaboration with Arro Home, which you can find out more about here.

Outside of writing the TLC Interiors blog, Chris is an interior stylist and author. You can also catch him on your TV screens as a designer on Channel 10's Changing Rooms. If you'd like to book a design consult with Chris, you can find out more here

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