Spring seems to be here incredibly early for many of us. When you spend your days indoors but can see the beautiful weather outside, it really makes you restless. This week, Julie and I took a short break to make our own versions of a Spring card from Easy Greeting Cards and we thought we’d share our efforts with you. At the bottom, you’ll find a link to the instructions from the book so you can make your own.
first we picked out some supplies
then we chose stamps
next we played with the watercolor pencils
my finished card
Julie’s finished card
To make your own card, click here!
I can’t tell all of you how happy I am to at last have Patty’s Sewing MODKID Style as an actual physical book on my desk. For any of you who have met Patty Young, it will be no stretch to imagine that she’d be a dream to work with. I can attest that this is truly the case. We had fun, we worked hard, and I’m absolutely proud of the finished book. Leave me a comment on this post by Wednesday and I’ll select one lucky winner to get a free copy of the book.
Check back on Wednesday to see her book as it evolved from concept to finished book. Today, I looked back on the process with Patty.
Wiley Craft: What was the hardest part of creating this book?
Patty: Writing the intro chapters. I can write how-to pattern instructions practically in my sleep but those first three pages in the book took me just about as long as the entire rest of the book. I worked on those pages during our Spring Break vacation to Hilton Head last year, so it’s been exactly a year since those were finished. I remember sitting by the pool writing and re-writing while everyone else had a great time. I made everyone read them about a dozen times and still on the way back home, I re-wrote the whole thing again.
WC: What aspect of the book production process was the most surprising?
Patty: Being the control freak, OCD, Type-A personality that I am, I was surprised that I was able to give up so much control over the look and feel of the book without too much of a melt-down. In my sewing patterns, I am a one-woman shop: I do 100-percent of the design, writing, typesetting, illustration and photography. Although I still did all of the the pattern design and illustration, for this book I hired a photographer to do some tandem shooting with me and the wonderful design team at Wiley did all the design and layout of the book. Also, I gave up control over sewing each and every sample piece to my assistants, Emalee and Emily. It was liberating, to say the least!
WC: Is there anything you found to be much easier than you’d anticipated?
Patty: The whole process was much easier than I anticipated. I won’t lie; I was positively terrified to take on such a huge project (certainly the biggest project I had undertaken in my professional career!). I imagined countless sleepless nights, nervous breakdowns and anxiety attacks. I was afraid of missing my deadlines and disappointing my publisher, my family and my fans. But, after the first deadline of the book came and went without too much ado, our processes fell into a steady rhythm, and I realized that I could do this.
WC: Is there anything you’d do differently on a next book?
Patty: I know it sounds crazy but I wouldn’t change a thing in this book. I thoroughly enjoyed the process and I am truly in love with the outcome. My next book will be completely different than this one, only because this one is now finished and I am itching to work on something new and different. I urge evryone out there to send me suggestions on what you’d like to see. I have some ideas swirling around in this crazy head of mine, but of course, I’d love to hear what you all want to see.
PS, Patty – we wouldn’t change a thing, either.
Sewing MODKID Style Blog Tour
Wed., April 4th, 2012: A Sewing Journal
Friday, April 6th, 2012: Pink Chalk Studio
Monday, April 9th, 2012: Melanie Dramatic
Wed., April 11th, 2012: Stop Staring and Start Sewing
Friday, April 13th, 2012: Generation Q
Monday, April 16th, 2012: Lil Blue Boo
Wed., April 18th, 2012: True Up
Friday, April 20th, 2012: Paige Hill
Monday, April 23rd, 2012: Boutique Café
Wed., April 25th, 2012: The Long Thread
Friday, April 27th, 2012: Sew Pretty Dresses
Monday, April 30th, 2012: Prudent Baby
Wed., May 2nd, 2012: Our Busy Little Bunch
Friday, May 4th, 2012: Fat Quarterly
Monday, May 7th, 2012: Making It Fun
Wed., May 9th, 2012: MODKID blog
Tim Adam of Handmadeology.com, author of How to Make Money Using Etsy: A Guide to the Online Marketplace for Crafts and Handmade Products, has graciously offert to share some wonderful tutorials and tips with our Wiley Craft readers.
As a creative business owner there is no doubt you want your Facebook Fan Page to draw fans in and keep them there. You also want your images to match your brand and at the same time be crisp and clear. The deadline is fast approaching and all Facebook Fan Pages will make the switch over to the new timeline.
Here are some examples from the handmade/design world…enjoy!
1. On the Handmadeology fan page we are featuring new fans each week. You can get your Etsy items featured by clicking the cover photo, liking and sharing the photo, and leaving your Etsy shop link. This helps stimulate fan interaction and greatly increases our reach on Facebook.
2. A little biased here as this is my wife’s fan page! You can see she integrates her logo along with her slogan and samples of her work.
3. Great design here. Shows off designs and lets the fan know what their shop is selling.
4. Eye-catching for sure! A close-up shot piques the interest and makes me want to find out more.
5. Love this product display!
6. No text, but simple eye-catching photos!
7. Adding a photo from your last craft show is a great way to show your fans what is happening offline.
8. Get seasonal with your cover photo.
9. Great mix of photos and info.
When you are designing your timeline cover, profile pic, and even your custom app pics, it can be a pain and time-consuming. With this Photoshop template you can drag your images and test them out in Photoshop first.
Fan Page Timeline Photoshop Template FREE Download:
With this template you can design your timeline before you upload them to Facebook…saving tons of time!
It officially feels like spring outside and we can’t think of a better way to start spring cleaning crafting then to make something to help us get organized! (Hey, we think this officially counts as part of the cleaning process.) Thanks to Kelly McCants aka Modern June for providing the pattern for these fun chalk cloth labels in her book, Sewing with Oilcloth. Click on the picture below for the pattern!
Happy Friday to all and a big congratulations to Rebecca and Janet – the winners of this week’s giveaway of Studio Spaces.
I don’t know about all of you, but the weather here is just screaming for some Spring cleaning. Don’t tell my Publisher, but I’m sneaking my desk copy of Studio Spaces home this weekend so I can rodeo in a few areas in my own home studio.
By far the biggest perk of my job is getting to know and work with some of my favorite designers. I’ve worked with Anna Maria Horner for several years and was excited to include a sneak peek inside her studio in our recently published Better Homes and Gardens Studio Spaces.
Me: Your work environment has been a creative studio for quite some time. What is your top organizational tip to keep your space functional?
Anna Maria: Everyone has their own idea of organization–but for me that means everything for a related type of work gets organized in the same general area. I keep all my sewing-related goods on one side of the room, drawing in another nook, office stuff in a different spot, etc. Also, I really like my tools out in the open where they are easy to pick up, and not buried in too many bins and boxes. So I have lots of open shelving, and hang several tools on the wall.
Me: What do you feel is the difference between a craft room and a studio?
Anna Maria: Well, I don’t know, really! But I guess I’ve never called my space a craft room because it exists for the sole purpose of my work, and not a pastime. I guess the notion of a craft room, for some, might mean it’s a family space to create, or a space to work on hobbies. Although I think these words and their meaning have been changing a lot in the past decade or so, because the nature of making both for income and for fun is changing. I think you call it what you call it and you do what you do. We certainly have lots of family crafting that goes on in my work studio!
Me: Is there anything you change in your studio when you are looking for fresh inspiration?
Anna Maria: Yes, I like to sift things around. I do switch around what I choose to put up on the walls and pin boards. I love being able to have a few couches in here too, and I frequently change out quilts and pillows on them depending on the season. In a lot a ways all that kind of tinkering makes the studio just like the rest of my house.
Me: What aspect of your studio changes most frequently?
Anna Maria: UUUhhhm. The “piles” of things. And by that I mostly mean sketches, swatches, project materials, notes, etc. They all change based on whatever I’m working on.
Me: For someone who is starting on their own creative space refresh, what would be your top piece of advice?
Anna Maria: Clear out anything that doesn’t inspire you or function for you. Pay attention to how you work, and let everything in the room support and inspire that!
Hopefully some of Anna’s studio savvy will inspire you as you work on spring cleaning your creative space. And now, how about that giveaway and announcement I promised? Anna and I are hard at work on her third book, due out this fall! Stay tuned to this blog, and her blog, for more information as we get closer to our publication date. For now, I’ll just share that you may want to keep en eye out for some nice, sturdy embroidery hoops.
At last we get to the giveaway! I’ll offer up a copy of Studio Spaces to two readers who leave me a comment on this post. I’ll select the winners at random and announce the winner on Wednesday.
Sorry we have been so silent this year at Wiley Craft! We’ve been incredibly busy putting the finishing touches on some soon-to-release books and getting even more new books underway. I honestly can’t wait to share all the great new offerings we have coming out this year, so keep checking in.
The first book I’d like to share is just perfect for this time of year – just past the new year and almost into Spring. It’s time to take stock and get the chaos under control. Whether your consider yourself a sewer, a quilter, a knitter, a scrapbooker, jewelry maker, or a little of everything, Studio Spaces by Better Homes and Gardens has a ton of inspiring ideas for how to corral your crafting supplies in ways that are not only practical, but beautiful.
Studio Spaces is a great mix of inspriation and bare-knuckles how-to. In addition to the before-and-after makeovers, the projects, tips, and organizing ideas, you’ll also get sneak peeks inside the studios of 6 top designers – but more about that next week. For now, I’ll leave you with a free project, some creative book ends that make great use of designer fabric scraps, Get It In the Bag.
What better time then the new year to pick up a new hobby? If you haven’t tried your hand at jewelry making, here’s your chance! The Urban Jungle necklace pattern comes from Not Your Mama’s Beading – an oldie, but a goodie from our jewelry making line. Click the cover above to view the pattern.
Many congratulations to Juliane, the winner of the Contemporary Irish Knits givewawy. My huge apologies for the delay in both selecting and posting the winner. The school holidays and kid wrangling got the better of me and I’ve just now been able to get in and wrap this up.
We hope everyone is able to enjoy some downtime this week and recover from the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. What do we recommend to unwind? Knitting, of course! This knitted bobbled hat uses elastic yarn and is basically just a tube cinched at the top with a crocheted chain. (The elasticity will ensure a snug fit.) Click here for the pattern.
Have a fun, safe weekend and we’ll see you in 2012!