Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Men Who Quilt

Today I stumbled upon a blog written by a male quilter. The fact that he quilts and is male is really not that shocking or anything. I have known a few men who quilt or do some sort of fiber art but it was his profile picture that stood out. At the time of this reading he is wearing a really nice suit and tie in his picture and reminded me more of a business-CEO-type-of-guy. I used to work for a company that was all about making people more creative but the suits up stairs had no idea what (or why we loved to do it) the things we did. They only cared about $$$.

So, I was like "Really?" and I browsed through Ryan Walsh: I'm Just a Guy Who Quilts blog. And you know what, he is awesome! I'm love with his tutorial {Pillow Talk} A Tutorial Part I and Part II which involves altering circles to complete a very interesting layout and design.

So I got to thinking about other guy quilters I know, and they vary in personalities just as much as women quilters I know but I just don't know as many of them. I decided to do searches on those I know about and to see if I could find more. Here are some of the ones I found (in no particular order):

They are all amazing and inspiring to me. They are doing what they love. Keep it up guys!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Be Proud to be DIY

As many of you probably do, I subscribe to a number of blogs and they span a great deal of different interests but many times they do relate to each other even if it is not about crafting. That happened today with Get Rich Slowly, a personal finance blog that I read from time to time. The article today is Made by Hand: In Praise of Amateurs. It is a personal tribute not only to handmade, DIY and being self-sustainable but to the author's dad who did many projects and inventions over the years before his rather young passing. It is amazing how much he did in his short lifetime.

J.D. Roth, the author, also gives us a sneak peak at the upcoming book Made by Hand by Mark Fraunfelder the editor of Make magazine. Evidently it is not a do-it-yourself instruction book but a look at someone who loves to do what DIYers love to do. I came from a family of DIY types. We always had a huge garden, we canned and froze all kinds of produce, my mom taught me to sew and crochet, my brother was a wood carver and cabinet maker but not professionally and we never ate out which at the time I thought was tragic.

I really liked this article because it brought back my own memories but also the change I've felt in the last few years about being able to be more self-sustainable. I'm even taking a computer course so I can do my own maintenance and it has inspired me to one day to try to build my own computer. I recently learned how to knit and have had great praise for the scarves I've given away.

Do you do crafts as part of being able to DIY? Do you find yourself wanting to DIY other areas like constructing your own lamp or building a patio?

Friday, March 12, 2010

I'm in the Top 25 at Craft Critique

My wire-edge ribbon article I wrote for Craft Critique is one of their 25 most read articles. I'm so excited. You can read it too; click here. It contains a tutorial on making a ribbon rose. Or, you can go to Craft Critique to see it and all the top 25 in this special article.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

A Place to Shop

One of my favorite online stores that I sometimes find myself at late at night is Erica's Craft & Sewing Center. They have just about anything: fabric, books, yarn, thread, machines, magazines (even the Australian ones), and more. You should really explore the site yourself.

If you live or plan on visiting near South Bend, Indiana you can visit the actual store. I have still yet to go even though I've driven by South Bend several times to visit relatives but never during a time when they're open.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Recycle Crafting and Green Crafting

I'm a little behind on my crafty links for each day of the month, National Craft Month. It was a very busy weekend with spending the whole day Saturday at Crop for a Cause. I didn't get much done but I did have a lot of fun with my friends and I did win one silent auction of some kids scrapbooking supplies for my daughter.

While trying to think of what I wanted to share with you next I came across an article about taking used items and making them into unique art items to sell. They called it Junk Style Art. Recently I have been collecting old sweaters (mostly wool ones to felt) and any unique pieces of clothing to create something new. I have done some re-fashion before and wrote about one of the items in this article: How to Re-fashion a Kid's Sweatshirt. I started researching sites to give me some ideas and found the ones below.

Try these sites for finding ideas on recycle crafting or being a green crafter:

Have fun exploring and getting inspiration.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Crop for a Cause: Making MS a Memory

Hi everyone. Tomorrow I'll be at the Crop for Cause: Making MS a Memory fundraising event. This is the 4th year for this phenomenal 8 hour event where about 200 scrapbookers, paper crafters and even other crafters come together to have fun and hopefully get some crafty work done.

There will be food and prizes and a great silent auction area where over 140 baskets of goodies are up for grabs. Baskets are filled with not just scrapping supplies but dinners, fitness memberships, Chicago Fire soccer tickets, and even a condo package in Hawaii. Check it out. If you are in the Schaumburg, IL area you can stop by and see the silent auction area for yourselves. The auction area is open to the public.

Since I will be here tomorrow, Saturday, March 6, I won't be posting my daily link but I did post 2 for today. Have a good weekend everyone!

Lion Brand Yarn

This is one of my favorite sites to get free patterns for crochet and knit. I've been crocheting ever since I've been a little girl. My mom taught me when I was 5. She also tried to teach me to knit but after too many arguments about how I was doing it all wrong and too many times getting all tangled up I gave up.

Fast forward 30 some years later and in half and hour with much more focus I learned to cast on and do a basic stitch at a quilt show. Although, I did not remember everything that day it gave me the itch to learn more. Luckily, Lion Brand has put these great how-to videos on You Tube. See, You Tube can actually be educational. Who knew?

The video below will show you one way to cast on. I don't do it this way but you can access other video lessons to do much more with your yarn and a pair of knitting needles.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Craft: Transforming Traditional Crafts

Many of you may remember when Craft was this cool new craft magazine that popped up on your local magazine rack at the bookstore. It was so different from all the other magazines. It spoke to a younger generation of crafters who were trending DIY and indie craft styles but it was a refreshing look at the art of craft for those of us not exactly in our twenties anymore. Then you may have wondered where it went.

After about 5 years as a hard copy medium it evolved into an awesome online magazine with a blog, projects, a community section and how-to videos. So, craftzine.com is my crafty link for today. Have fun exploring.


Going forward with my crafty site for everyday of National Craft Month I have selected BurdaStyle for today. It's a community of sewers who mostly create their own patterns from Burda's collection or their own then share them with the community. Burda calls it "open source sewing." You don't have to worry about copyrights here and you get a heck of a lot of inspiration from everyone's creativity. And if you don't sew clothes, don't worry they have non-apparel craft projects too.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


Today I continue my quest to post a link to a craft-related site for everyday in March. My choice for today is the site Swap-Bot. If you like to do swaps of either handmade items, supplies or even just emails or real mail then this is the place for you. I just joined last week after a friend suggested I visit the site.

Because I'm a newbie I can only do a handful of swaps until I get so many good ratings. I am currently signed up for swaps for buttons, book or magazine and fibers. Since I am so busy with classes and stuff I decided to keep my chosen swaps simple and use stuff I already have. I'll keep you posted on how it works out.

Monday, March 1, 2010

March is National Crafting Month

Yes, it is March. It still feels like January in the Midwest but at least we have our crafts. Unfortunately, I have not been crafting as much as I would like and it's been since September that I have written about anything.

But to celebrate this awesome month and to have fun waiting for Spring to get here I am challenging myself to visit and list a crafty site everyday of this month. You may have noticed that I didn't say anything about crafting something myself. I am currently taking some classes while I work full-time and it has limited my crafting adventures but hopefully I will get some time to work on something and I'll let you know. But now, on with the show.

One of my favorites and not just because I used to write for them but to learn about a variety of crafty products is CraftCritique. If you are curious about a product you can also check over there to see if anyone else has used that marker or experimented with a Yudu or read that book.