13 January 2022
Owner and designer, Danielle Wintrip, a.k.a. Rosy & Grey shares how cross stitch became a form of therapy and provided peace during difficult times, along with her striking abstract designs and top tips to get you started…
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your business? Why did you decide to set up?
I never thought I’d find a craft I’d enjoy because I’m so clumsy with my hands. I tried knitting and sewing, and I wanted to enjoy them, but I didn’t. So, when my sister suggested cross stitch, I hesitated. But I bought a little kit and gave it a try – and I loved it!
I spent hours searching for charts that suited my aesthetic because I wanted these pieces around me as art. I couldn’t find anything quite right, so I curated and designed my own. My friends and other cross stitchers loved the colours and designs, and I realised I could sell them. With my experience as a writer and website designer, it felt easy and natural to do so.
'Boho' by Rosy & Grey
How did you decide on your business name?
One day, as I was driving and thinking about cross-stitch, one of my favourite songs came on the radio. It’s called Rosy & Grey, by the Canadian band, The Lowest of the Low. The song is about finding beauty and hope in bad situations. And the name fits the business well because rosy is the feeling I get from cross stitch, and grey is for the popular decorating colour, which speaks to creating display-worthy designs for my home.
How did you get into cross stitching? Crafts are known to be excellent for wellbeing – how vital do you find crafting for your own mindfulness and wellbeing?
I was inspired to start cross stitch as therapy after a personal loss. Two months later, the pandemic hit. Cross stitching helped me unwind my mind from the grief of both events. It was a mindful activity I could use to escape. It taught me that no matter what faced me, I could find peace.
“I firmly believe that however imperfect life is, there is always beauty.”
'Seville' by Rosy & Grey
Where do you get your design inspiration/what inspires you?
Tonnes of things inspire me, like art, colour, words, and people. But I think of design as curation as opposed to inspiration. My charts have to fulfil a set of criteria. They must encourage flow, gracefully allow for mistakes, and be suitable for beginners. My personal aesthetic preferences lean toward abstraction and masterful use of colour. I’m also interested in and influenced by interior design.
What’s your favourite cross stitch creation to-date? Can we see?!
I love 'Bud'. The colour palette evokes 1970s sophistication, muted and perfectly matched. And I love the abstraction of the shape. We can see the bud of a flower, or a little buddy, a friend in it. 'Bud' makes me smile, and the colour combination treats my eyes. This palette unexpectedly soothes you, even though it’s not restful blue or neutrals.
'Bud' by Rosy & Grey
What are your top tips for beginners/those who’d like to start cross stitch?
- Good lighting makes all the difference.
- A needle minder is essential, especially if you have pets.
- Buy a needle threader and make needle threading less painful.
- Don’t be afraid to make mistakes.
- Don’t be afraid to make more mistakes.
Are you into any other crafts, and if so, what are they?
I like working with digital layout programs, and I love art in general. I’ll stick with cross stitch for now and continue to be a consumer of other people’s arts and crafts. That’s an important role, too, and one that’s often forgotten.
Tell us about your craft room/workspace – we’d love to see pictures, too!
I have a desk in our main living area where I use my computer to design charts. I have lots of skeins of DMC threads to create palettes. My husband and I have made a beautiful home for ourselves. It is lovely and inspiring, and I’m glad to work in the heart of it – with my dogs, Kenzi and Jam, on the floor beside me.
Where can people find out more about you?
Look out for Danielle’s 'Bright Mountain' chart coming to the blog soon… Until then, get back to nature with this six-part garden SAL (stitch-a-long) by Durene Jones!