Front Row with Zoe Bullock of Bellacrochet
I have no shame in admitting that my years during the COVID-19 pandemic were spent relatively poor in comparison to our next interviewee. Whilst I binge-watched Gilmore Girls, Bella Bullock–infamously known for her amazing crochet skills, and to the lucky few of us who’ve been graced with her presence intimately–began her journey into what we now know as her brand and baby, 'Bella Crochet'.
Bella was not only quick to find her calling as a designer but also in adopting the Midas touch. All she touches turns to gold–from her style, designs, and very soon jewellery. Bella has never failed when creating with intent and Bella Crochet is worn loudly; her creations are worn with pride, serving as the greatest extension of herself. Anyone attentive, or who actually cares about what they wear, would recognize the recent accessories she’s begun spotting and has to wonder; where did she get that?
Well, soon enough we’ll have that luxury to tap into it, with Bella Crochet expanding beyond clothing and giving us what a lot of people tend to neglect; accessories.
Creating is not an easy task. There is a mass that begins to weigh you down, whilst concurrently providing a merciful release. Bella focuses on the release and with every drop, she pivots herself into the unknown–gliding through it to break yet another barrier put in her way.
Naturally being undervalued is an attachment of being a woman; yet we’re not provided with the opportunity to say it. If we speak of it, we face the harsh reality that we have to fix it and not conform; that the state we live in is oppressive and violent in its being. Bella has not been one to submit to silence nor fantasy–knowing that where her career is right now is not only beneficial to herself but rather for many women just like her. Looking beyond what that inspiration does can fuel us to create more; striving to have more than just one female-led brand adorned publicly, but to make space for more.
Today we join Bella for a deep-dive into her universe; what Bella Crochet has meant, what she has learnt from navigating a space where there can be such limited space for us women, seeking more than what were allowed to want & have, and whether this entire journey was all by chance–or destiny.
Would you mind giving me a short description of who you are and what you do?
ZB: My name is Zoe Bella Bullock, I am the designer and owner of Bellacrochet. I’ve always had a love for fashion–which led me on this unbelievable journey as a crochet artist (inner-child screaming). I am a multifaceted creator, designer & entrepreneur who thrives off balance, passion, constant growth, and being vulnerable through my art by utilizing the platforms that are in right now. Vulnerability is the secret creative ingredient.
How did Bella Crochet become what it is today?
ZB: Bellacrochet started in the most organic way possible. During the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 when we had our very first lockdown–my mom set up an arts & crafts table filled with painting supplies, beads, coloring pencils, books, and wool. I gravitated toward the wool and the crochet hook. I asked my mom to teach me the basic stitches. At first it started as something to pass the time–but then it became very therapeutic. I started watching YouTube tutorials during that time, worked on my craft, and then realized that what I saw on social media and in stores was, as I like to say “cliché crochet”. I eventually created my own patterns and the rest was history. I want Bellacrochet to show a certain perspective on how I’m changing the view of crochet–and how Bellacrochet is an entity with street culture, character & creativity. I strive to create sustainably, produced clothing pieces which consist of handmade crochet and jewellery, by yours truly.
If there was a simple way to explain what Bella Crochet & your story means to you–how would you describe it, and why?
ZB: Bellacrochet is my baby and I’ll continue to nurture, learn, and watch it grow. This brand means a lot to me because, not only is it creating a path for myself and a big role in my independence, but it's also allowing vulnerability into my work as a form of therapy. It has helped me connect not only with a wider audience–but also with myself and my own identity.
We’ve had private conversations regarding being a woman in Fashion and all that it requires from us; when you began your journey had you suffered from any challenges and how have you learnt to combat them?
ZB: Women are still struggling to break into the creative industry at the same rate as men–which leads to the lack of female representation in the design & fashion industry. That comes with its own challenges, such as finding myself in meetings only surrounded by males and being the only female. With all that in mind–I'm sitting here wondering if I have done enough to drive progress and try change the situation. I’d love to reach out & connect to any female who feels the same and wants to create with other female creatives. It’s important to actively seek out and amplify the voices of women, as well as other underrepresented groups in the industry. We can start by highlighting the work of women creatives, creating spaces for women to share their experiences & perspectives, and advocating for more diverse representation.
Outside of your creative skills, what do you think has lead to the success of Bella Crochet?
ZB: My personality is a mirror of my work–hence my designs are rockstar-inspired #IAMROCKSTAR. I am a very bubbly person who enjoys connecting and exchanging energy through art within the creative space. Building these kinds of connections & bridges between people is what motivates me as a designer; as a social butterfly, having social skills and that vibrant energy has propelled Bellacrochet and its success as an overall brand.
And lastly, as much as I’ve hounded you on my interest in speaking with you–why’d you accept being interviewed by us?
In Question 6, you asked me why I accepted this interview with you–and this is the perfect explanation:
Sharing my voice with, and through, another female is already the first step to showing us that women can be in these positions of influence too. The more we showcase ourselves to a population of hungry–yet hesitant women–the more those women will be energized to start fighting for positions of power within this industry.
Photography by @kushfilm