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Finding a way into tufting with Nicole O'Reilly: A Tuftingshop Ambassador

Welcome to another exciting interview on the TuftingShop Ambassadors blog! Today, we have the pleasure of chatting with Nicole O'Reilly (@nicoleoreillydesign), a talented artist and ambassador for TuftingShop. Nicole's journey into tufting began when she discovered the trend on TikTok, and since then, she has been passionately creating stunning rugs. With a background in fashion design, Nicole found the parallels between tufting and knitwear enticing, leading her to explore this new creative field. Let's dive into Nicole's tufting journey and discover the inspiration behind her captivating creations.


The Start of Nicole's Tufting Journey:

Nicole shares that her introduction to tufting came through the remarkable works she saw online by other tufters. She was instantly hooked by the artistry and knew she wanted to try it for herself. Eager to explore new artistic endeavors, she wasted no time in ordering a tufting gun and gathering wool from TuftingShop. Drawing extensively as a child and experimenting with various creative hobbies later on, tufting captured Nicole's attention like no other craft, fueling her creativity and keeping her fully engaged.


Favorite Materials and Tools for Tufting:

As a strong advocate for naturalness and high quality, Nicole exclusively works with 100% New Zealand wool for all her tufting projects. When it comes to tools, she relies on the AK DUO tufting gun, which allows her to explore both cut and loop pile tufting.


Nicole's Creative Process: Designing and Planning Tufting Projects:

Nicole's creative process begins with an original drawing or sketch. She takes her time to experiment with different variations, exploring various textures, colors, and shapes before committing to a design. She believes that the final rug can only be as good as the reference she starts with, making it crucial to invest effort in the initial design phase. Once she's happy with the design, Nicole transfers it onto the canvas and begins tufting. Throughout the process, she's not afraid to try different colors and make adjustments based on how the materials interact and take shape on the rug.


Nicole's Most Proud Tufting Projects:

Among her tufting projects, Nicole highlights her most recent piece, a portrait of Kendrick Lamar, as one she's particularly proud of. It was an opportunity for her to showcase all that she had learned and explore realistic human portraits—an area she's eager to explore further. Additionally, she fondly remembers her very first rug, a tiger design that ignited her passion for tufting and set her on this creative journey.


Impact on Life and Personal Growth:

Tufting has had a transformative impact on Nicole's life. It has allowed her to meet friends from all over the world and discover a newfound confidence in herself and her creative abilities. Before tufting, Nicole was pursuing a career in fashion design after graduating from college. However, once she discovered tufting, it became hard to ignore, eventually becoming her main focus. She hopes to merge her two passions, tufting and fashion, in the future.


Enjoying the Tufting Community:

Being part of the tufting community has been a delightful experience for Nicole. She has been amazed by the supportive nature of people in the community who are keen to share their experiences, techniques, and lessons. Nicole feels grateful for the camaraderie and the inspiration she receives from fellow tufters. She believes in playing her part in helping others who want to get into tufting and actively encourages beginners to embrace the challenge, try new things, and experiment with different ideas to stay inspired and motivated.


We thank Nicole O'Reilly for sharing her tufting story and insights. Her journey into tufting showcases her unwavering dedication and passion for this captivating art form. Make sure to follow Nicole on social media (@nicoleoreillydesign) to stay updated on her latest creations and tufting adventures. We can't wait to see what marvelous creations await us in the future!

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