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Monday, December 12, 2011

Featured artist: Pia from piabarile and piabarilejewelry

Today I'd like you to meet Pia.  She runs two wonderful shops piabarile where she sells knit and crochet accessories as well as eco friendly up-cycled and re-purposed accessories and piabarilejewelry where she sells jewelry and gemstones.  Hope you enjoy the interview!

1. Tell us as little or as much as you would like about yourself.
I am 45 years old, Italian living in the Netherlands, married to a Dutch guy, Erik. We have a terrific 11 years old kid, Pascal and a grumpy very old ex-stray cat that we all adore, called Matteo.

arm cuff
2. What do you sell?
I have 2 online shops.
One selling knit, crochet, felted and recycled accessories. The other selling jewelry.

3. Why handmade?
Because it's unique, personal, genuine....Because I like things that have a story behind them. As most of the people making handmade, I also buy handmade, as much as I can.

 4. Where does your inspiration to create come from and/or your inspiration in life?
Necessity, I guess. To begin with, creating keeps me sane LOL.
And for me it became "my job" when I moved to the Netherlands, a decade ago, as I couldn't use my education or previous work experiences to find a job and I had to learn a new language, I decided to invest in my creativity. I started my own business in 2004 and have been active on craft markets for 6 years. In 2010 I started selling online.
Besides that, everything inspires me. My family. Grumpy old Matteo. Nature. Art. Things I see...

Scarf necklace

5. Besides creating what else do you do? Do you have a full time job?
No, this is my full time (60+ hours a week) job!

6. When did you start thinking you were an artist?
I do not see myself as an artist. I just do what I do as good as I can and enjoy it. I try not to label myself and not to take myself and what I do too seriously. I noticed that that makes my life a lot simpler and more joyous... the few times I succeed in doing that at least!

7. Who has been most influential in your craft work?
I think my life experiences in general, my home country, Italy. Traveling. My art history education, I could name a few artists I love here, but I won't.
But there is ONE person that really taught me and inspired me and influenced me more than anybody else, and that is my grandmother. A tiny woman from the South of Italy that passed away 2 years ago, at age 94. She kept crocheting until a few days before she died. We shared the passion for making, and the name. I am named after her, Pia. Still, now, I use her crochet hooks and knitting needles.

Bib necklace crocheted
8. Where would you like to be in five years?
In Italy, somewhere in the wine region close to the city I was born, in a country house, growing my own veggies, with my family, lots of cats and a couple of dogs. Still making and selling stuff.

9. Is there anything you'd like to try doing that you haven't done?
crafts, sports, life in general?

For crafts, plenty!
One thing I didn't succeed doing yet is making glass beads. A real pain.
In general...A trip to Island and one to India. Tattoos. I love tattoos but I don't have any as I cannot decide what and where...But knowing myself, if I ever get started, I'll continue until I look as a comic book!

Fingerless glove

10. Besides online where else do you sell?
At the moment I am only online. I also do a little wholesale for shops.
I do not exclude I'll do a few craft fairs in the future again.

where to contact you:


  1. Pia thank you very much for taking the time to do this interview! I wish you the best of luck on both of your shops and loved the sweet story about your grandma!! My grandma didn't know how to knit she asked me to teach her :)

  2. Such a lovely feature of a sweet and talented artist. So nice to know more about you! Wishing you all the best, and greetings from the Netherlands, by Nancy

  3. Congrats Pia!
    Tha bib necklace is wonderful :-)

  4. Oh, how much I love this one! The arm cuff design is so original, cool ;) Thanks for introducing, Claudia!

  5. I love Pia's work! The necklace scarf is gorgeous! It must have been a challenge to move to a new country and the learn language. Luckily creativity was on her side!


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