From turning heads in her DIY outfits to publishing her own books, Molla Mills has never been one to follow the herd. We meet the crochet designer going her own way…
We’re huge fans of crochet designer Molla Mills‘ quirky style, which is why we’ve included her monochrome crochet rug pattern in the latest issue, and it was no surprise to learn that standing out from the crowd has always been central to her style. “I’ve loved making and modifying my clothes for as long as I can remember,” she tells us. “I went through several styles when I was younger – punk, goth, hippy – then over the years it evolved into vintage, and now it’s a mix of them all.” And a lack of skills never held teenage Molla back: “I had no shame, I wore everything I made!” she laughs.
Image © Saara Salmi
Having accompanied her mum to many a craft workshop while growing up, Molla went on to study fashion design at university. It was then, during her master’s year, that she really set the foundations for her career. “I had a small Molla Mills craft label, but I realised making and selling handmade products would never be profitable enough,” she explains. After deciding to give designing and selling patterns a try, she went about producing her first book with no financial backing: “I created a concept, formed a small team, and got several material sponsors,” she recalls. The gamble paid off – the book got her name out and led to amazing collaborations.
This entrepreneurial spirit led her to fulfil what she calls “a real craftswoman’s dream” – launching her own range of yarns. “It’s made by a Finnish company called Suomen Lanka,” she explains. “I’ve been using their yarns for years, so last year I suggested a collaboration.”
Now with a third craft book on the way, regular workshop teaching and hopefully a crochet exhibition in the works, Molla hasn’t lost any of the unique style that started her creative journey and still carries her crochet bags everywhere she goes. But has she ever experienced any handmade sartorial disasters? “I once made an amigurumi penis brooch,” she admits. “No matter how free minded I think I am, the looks I got from people were too much!”
Molla’s monochrome crochet rug pattern can be found in Mollie Makes 44. Available now from all good newsagents, supermarkets and our official online store. Got your copy? Turn to page 54 for the full crochet pattern.