Alright. None of this vague ‘I am been so busy’ talk any more. I’m getting down to business and telling you what I’ve been working on.
OK. Deep breaths. I’m a bit nervous about this. I was approached in June about this project, and after a few meetings and a lot of doodles and scribbles (it filled a couple notebooks) and lots of emails and late nights, it’s ready for the world.
If you’ve been a part of this project, you already know what it is. (You know who you are.) And to these lovely makers, I have to say thank you. It has been such a joy to work with all of you! Your ideas, designs, and creative spirits are so inspiring to me. Makers literally made this project happen.
My crafty WIPs have been piling up, and I have to admit my blog post drafts are hitting two dozen! (I can’t even count how many doodles and notes I have lying around of even more post ideas, too.) But next week, I have something extra special to share with you all! I can’t wait! ;)
I’ve sneaked in some crafting here and there, but my WIPs include a needle felted garland, a set of pyrography coasters, and completing October’s project. For shame, lady. Get that craft on!
I haven’t even announced October’s craft properly! October has flown by, but if you’ve been paying attention on Twitter you might already know that October’s craft is candle making.
Tutorials are in the works, though, and I’ve blocked out some ‘me’ time in my craft room. There’s something about autumn that’s so cosy and inspiring it makes me want to stay indoors with the radio on and needles clicking! There’s a storm warning for Monday, so maybe it’ll give me the time to tackle my pile. The best part about exploring new crafts has been sharing the skills on this blog. The more makers, the merrier!
And speaking of, who has been crafting for their gift list? (Eek. Where. is. the. time. going.)
In other crafty news, I have a lovely new toy to play with:
I never thought I’d love one of these tools so much, but the busier you get the more you appreciate an assistant!
To be honest, this post is a breath of relief. It’s nice to sneak in some time to say hello and think of all the lovely projects that are just waiting to be finished. Who else has an overflowing WIP pile? I’d love to know what you’ve been working on.
If there’s one thing creative people thrive on, it’s being in like company. Creativity thrives with creativity. Today I want to share 15 minutes with Kellee Rich, who is an artist, illustrator, designer, and all around modern maker.
Read her answers to sneak a peek into her studio, learn the (lengthy!) process of making her illustrated pouches, and best of all discover what she learnt from starting her own year-long project this year. Lessons come from unexpected places!
Where do you make?
I guess, like most, the whole house is a bit of a studio! I mostly knit and crochet in the living room, usually in front of a film or with the radio on, and do the rest of my work upstairs. My partner and I have moved house three times in the past year – from Brighton to rural Lincolnshire, and Lincolnshire to Norwich, and our first priority (my partner is an artist, too) has always been to set up studio areas and worry about the rest later.
I love my space. The light up there is so beautiful all day long, and our landlord and lady have immaculate taste and have kept the whole house simple and painted white throughout (which is my dream arrangement—magnolia walls, ugh) so it really feels like a bright, blank space for us to imprint our personalities upon.
You have to keep your workspace well-ventilated when you’re working with a pyrography pen.
In practice that means I’m enjoying autumn air and a gentle smoky scent whenever I practise my doodles. I’m still getting used to handling the tool and understanding pressure, movement, and the heat involved. I did some soldering in a workshop in school years ago; I was never any good at it!
But the pure pleasure of pyrography means even when the results aren’t perfect I’m enjoying the whole process.
(Plus, I quickly learnt the wood squares I bought are a bit too soft for my pen’s temperature. That means they burn REALLY easily. Oops.)
Other sensual scents I’ve been enjoying recently are these two Yankee Candles. I haven’t even opened them yet but they’re so strong my office smells wonderful. (The little crown stamp is by East of India and was a cheeky treat for myself. Shh!)
I already mentioned that September’s craft is smoky, rustic, and perfect for autumn.
Doesn’t woodburning tick all the boxes? ;)
Some of my earliest memories are of my mother decorating little crates with pyrography techniques. The crates were being prettied up for market displays. (Can you guess where I got my DIY bug from?)
There’s a revolution of crafts being made modern again and I think pyrography is coming more and more out of its shell. The beauty of this technique is that it’s so simple it can be traced back hundreds and even thousands of years back. Heat applied to wood to make art was seen in Egyptian times. Wood burning is probably as old as human’s control of fire itself.
In China it was called ‘Fire Needle Embroidery’. How awesome is that?!
Southbank Centre in London is running a summer-long event called ‘Festival of Neighbourhood’. They wanted to ask,
What makes the perfect neighbourhood?
Last weekend, I was invited to take part in the Village Fair (Aug 24/25). The key theme of the Fair was community and bringing people together to share their passions. There was a series of interactive talks called the Craft Code Village, which explored the relationship between the craft community revival and the web. Twelve bloggers from across the UK were invited to take part in a virtual stall, and four of us were at Southbank Centre in person.
Crafters have traditionally sold their goods and services at markets. Craft bloggers, on the other hand, are more likely to share online and often share how to make their craft too.
So what happens when craft bloggers create a virtual stall? What does a craft blog neighbourhood look like?
Here is the outcome of the craft bloggers virtual stall: a Tutorial Stall where each blogger has shared their own top pick from their blog.
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