Creative Crafty Dad on the Street: Spencer Willis
Whether he’s showing off his stellar animal impressions or crafting with his family, Creative Crafty Dad on the Street Spencer Willis brings creative joy and enthusiasm to every situation.
Spencer Willis has always loved crafting. He has been crafting for over 30 years. Spencer is a crafting veteran and has hands-on experience with all kinds of crafting, including calligraphy, paper crafting, rubber stamping, and scrapbooking. Spencer and his wife, Michelle, have a love for art in all its many genres. From music to theater to art, it fills their everyday lives. They have four children together. Each of their four children is blessed with creative streaks that manifest themselves in a variety of ways, including music composition, acrylic painting, and woodworking. It wouldn’t be an understatement to say that creativity runs deep with the Willis family and is a family affair! Spencer founded Stamp Chimp, which makes rubber stamp and paper crafting products for crafters of all ages, to help share his love of crafting and the arts with others. Stamp Chimp got its name from Spencer’s love of monkeys and chimps because they are smart and silly at the same time – just like Spencer himself. When Spencer and Michelle’s children were young, he loved sitting on the floor with them, playing and pretending to be different animals. One of his kids’ favorite imitations was his chimp. Spencer does a great chimp impression, complete with the waddle, cute little face, and characteristic “ooh ooh ahh ahh” sounds. The Wills family’s love of monkeys and chimps has remained even as the children have grown. In fact, Spencer and his youngest daughter lovingly dub each other ‘monkey buddies’ as a term of endearment and a symbol of their close bond. Spencer loves being “head chimp” of Stamp Chimp!
Creative Crafty Style
Which three words best describe your style? Conservative, classy, and practical
What are your favorite places to shop? These days it is almost all online because life is so busy, but I think it is important to still patronize brick and mortar stores. I love Beckett & Robb for suits and ties. I like to peruse Ross, Nordstrom Rack, and TJ Maxx for stylish and reasonably-priced apparel.
Who’s your favorite style icon? I really don’t have one.
What’s your best style advice? Be true to yourself but dress for the occasion. For job interviews or places where the first impression is paramount, I even err on the side of dressing one step above what the occasion may call for.
What trend did you love at the time but now cringe when you see old photos? Perms for guys. I wanted to be like the guys in my school who had naturally curly hair, so I got a perm for senior pictures. The maintenance alone for when it started to grow out was way beyond what I was willing to invest. Guys aren’t meant to spend that amount of time each day getting ready!
Facial hair or clean-shaven? Clean-shaven all the way. I don’t think I’ve got the face for a scruffy beard. Other guys can pull it off, but I’m not one who feels like they can. Every year the last 2 weeks of the year, I will grow out my facial hair to appease my 15-year-old daughter, who is the only one in the family begging me to grow my facial hair. The most entertaining part about it is the progressive ‘shave off’ I do at the end when I shave it off in portions.
Creative Crafty Family
What’s your dad superpower? Laughter. I have four kids who can oftentimes take life too seriously. I love to make a silly face, send a funny meme, or say something humorous when least expected to lighten the mood. Both they and my wife appreciate the reality check and reminder not to be so uptight.
What’s been your best family vacation? Hawaii this past April. Being with my adult and teenage children and wife for a week in paradise.
What’s your favorite family activity besides crafting? Playing games and laughing together.
Best parenting advice: Listen without judgment.
Creative Crafty Life
What’s your favorite show to binge-watch? Shark Tank. Got it on Hulu and watch new episodes religiously. When a new episode isn’t available, I’ll watch previous seasons.If you could pick anyone to star as you in a movie based on your life, who would it be? No one comes to mind, although I sometimes feel like Cosmo Kramer could be my double.
What’s your favorite sport and why? Football. It started in high school, where I went to every game of the season to cheer in the student section. At first, all of the terms were foreign to me, but I stuck with it and grew to love the game. Football is my favorite because of the big plays that can turn a game around quickly. I’m a Boise State fan and love it when the quarterback throws a 40-yard pass or when they pull out the old Statue of Liberty trick play.
What’s your favorite family dance party song? YMCA
What’s at the top of your travel bucket list? Italy with my wife and spend 2 weeks across the entire country.
What’s your favorite way to unwind at the end of a long day? Sitting down at the piano and playing whatever music suits my mood. Classical music, 80’s songs, choral music, or Broadway musicals often top my list. We love that Spencer took one of his family’s favorite activities and created a crafting company so that other families could have fun crafting together as well. Be sure to check out Stamp Chimp’s blog for plenty of crafting ideas. For more fun and crafty dads, be sure to check out FamilyApp’s Dad on the Street Channel!