Meet PDT member Zinia Amoiridou
Meet PDT member Zinia Amoiridou. Crafting from across the pond in Greece, she’s our youngest team member, with an appetite for creating contemporary projects and testing new techniques. We caught up with her about what it’s like to be crafty in Greece, how she balances the Project Design Team with university, and what truly inspires her.
We’re very jealous of you living in beautiful, sunny Greece! There must be inspiration all around…
Greece is definitely a really beautiful country. I have to admit that growing up here made me take sunny days and calm winters for granted. I spent most of my life in one of the ‘big’ cities which sadly don’t have a lot of green areas, but still have interesting architecture that can serve as a source of inspiration. Inspiration is really everywhere around us, from the colors of a sunset to the design on a billboard.
Sometimes I find myself complaining about the heat during the summertime or the lack of crafty supplies around here but I wouldn’t give up on my long sunny days of crafting for anything in the world.
"My current obsessions are scrapbooking and art journaling"
What is the crafting scene like there? Do you get to go to many craft fairs?
Crafting is not popular at all in Greece. I think it only started gaining some ground very recently. The main art store that I use for my art supplies only expanded their hobby section in the last year or so.
I never got the chance to attend a big craft event – I’m not sure if there are any in my city to be honest. I’m assuming that there are more options in Athens, but I never heard of something that would be worth the trip there.
Have you always been crafty?
I’ve been a creative kid [for as long as] I can remember. When my classmates were spending their allowance going out or buying clothes, I was the little introvert that would spend hours in the bookstores checking for new pens and pretty stationery.
What inspired you to apply to be a part of the Project Design Team?
It’s actually a weird story. I found out about the Design Team call when my friend Daisy (also known as @mygreencow) shared it on a small Facebook group and got me curious. I’ve seen many of the docrafts products around but never realised they were all under the same brand. I really loved the geometric Papermania collections and the variety of supplies that came with them, so I couldn’t resist giving it a shot… although I didn’t really think I’d make the cut!
"…my dream is to teach arts and crafts and inspire people to get more creative"
Do you have a favourite type of craft that you prefer to do?
This is a hard question because I’m the kind of person that loves trying anything and everything. My current obsessions are scrapbooking and art journaling. These two combined fulfill my need to preserve dear memories and express myself in a free and unrestricted way.
Describe your crafting style in five words.
Soft, minimalistic, artsy, whimsical and experimental.
What was the very first project you ever made?
It’s very hard to draw a line and decide when everything started. I’ve drawn since kindergarten, made cards since elementary school, made posters and party décor during middle school and started creating planner accessories in high school. I can say that the first project I made after I discovered the crafting world online and realised that there’s so much more than I thought were some smashbook pages.
"You can always make time for anything you love"
Who taught you what you know?
I was very lucky to have an amazing art teacher in school. She is a brilliant artist and, although arts are not really appreciated in our educational system, she did an amazing job to teach us some basic things during that one hour a week that her class lasted. Later on I learned a lot of things from YouTube videos and experimenting on my own.
You’re currently at university studying Fine and Applied Arts. How do you manage your time between school work and crafting?
You can always make time for anything you love. I’ve never felt like I don’t have enough time to do something I wanted. Maybe it’s because I love my uni and working on projects feels more like fun than homework. My department is actually pretty small so most professors are flexible with deadlines and project ideas.
Do you find your school work influences your craft projects?
I chose this university because my dream is to teach arts and crafts and inspire people to get more creative. So I try to have both of these worlds align and affect each other in the best way possible. I always try to get inspiration from the new things I learn in uni and apply them in creative ways on my crafty projects.
Where do you craft?
I don’t have a huge fancy craft room like the ones we see online, but in the past year I sort of turned the ‘living room’ of my small apartment into my crafty space. I have a separate table for my crafty mess but I will often pick a few supplies and go craft in front on my computer so I can watch videos while creating.
What’s on your craft playlist?
My go-to band for any time of the day is Owl City. I find the songs so sweet and inspiring. I also love listening to covers by Peter Hollens on YouTube and sing along. Sometimes I may even do some crafting while listening to online crafty podcasts like Paperclipping Roundtable, Scrap Gals and Live Inspired.
What are your three craft stash essentials?
I really hate this kind of questions because I’m very spoiled by having a wide variety of supplies and it’s really so hard to narrow it down to just three. I’ll have to go with double-sided tape, paints and my heat tool.
Tell us five interesting facts about yourself?
- When I was in high school I wanted to be a photographer but my family discouraged me and I ended up giving up on that idea.
- After school I applied and got in the physics department in uni. Although science really excites me, I couldn’t see myself following it as a career and I ended up dropping out. It took me a couple of years to get back on my feet and decide to apply for arts.
- I’m a gamer. I often spend some of my afternoon playing computer games.
- Last year, I found a puppy in a dumpster and she was one of the best things that ever happened in my life. I had to change apartments because my landlord didn’t allow pets but she’s worth all the troubles.
- Although I live really close to the sea, I haven’t been to the beach for the last 3-4 years… no particular reason!
Keep an eye out in the latest issue of Creativity magazine for more projects by Zinia. Creativity is available from all good craft stores and supermarkets. Alternatively, buy a copy online or subscribe and get it delivered straight to your door!