Yesterday was a perfect creative escape. Craft Camp was everything I thought that it would be–a full day of creative classes, yummy food, and craft inspiration. But it was more, because of the chance to hang out and talk with crafty ladies all day long. I connected with some people I already know–like Craft Camp teachers Julie Schneider, Sarah Goldschadt, Jessica Marquez, and Cal Patch, crafty writers Haley Pierson-Cox and Megan Nicolay, and the savvy and fabulous agent Kate McKean–but I also met lots of new people who I’ll hope to run into again, either online or in person. From jewelry designers to journalists, and from an oyster expert to a mathematician, the day was stimulating, social, and full of surprises. It was also impeccably organized (congrats for making it all run like clockwork, Brett!) and lovely all around.
Kayte Terry showed us how to make crepe paper flowers, which can be way more glamorous than I imagined. Here’s my rose:
I also made a humble terrarium, with the guidance of Gönül Yetim. I tried–with limited success–to capture my memories of last summer’s walking holiday in Ireland (complete with sheep):
The biggest surprise of the day for me was the painted bead necklace class, led by artist Christina Batch-Lee. I got far more fun and relaxation than I would have ever imagined out of the process of selecting paint colors, choosing how to apply them to beads, and then arranging the finished beads into strands.
So, what’s next for me? For the most part I’m keeping my nose to the grindstone to get my book project ready to go for my publisher, and as we start to talk about the book design it all is beginning to feel quite real. But I’ve just ordered a couple of new-to-me craft books to add to my personal library, and I’ll report on these soon.
There’s been a whole lot happening in my craft brain over recent months, and it’s all exciting and stimulating (and stressful too!). It’s mostly details about my book project, and I’ll be ready to start sharing bits of news about that a little later this spring. But while trying to balance demands of the book-to-be with the rest of my life, I’ve found tiny bits of time around the edges to work on a few of my own creative exploits.
The big event last month was QuiltCon, which has led me, a person who has never properly made a quilt before, to start scheming a couple of quilt projects AND to buy a proper machine that will enable me to machine quilt, whenever I’m ready. I’ve also knitted a shawl using Jill Draper yarns and pattern (thanks to artist Rebecca Ringquist, who introduced me to Jill’s stuff), and I’ve made a patchwork Scottie Dog for my nephew. Here’s a look at each of the Scottie’s two sides:
And speaking of dogs, I also sewed up a felted knit wool coat for Maisie:
All day Saturday I’ll be at Brooklyn Craft Camp, which promises to be an inspiring respite from day-to-day responsibilities, thanks to the creative vision and hard work of organizer Brett Bara. If you’re going, I look forward to showing you the pompoms I helped to make to decorate the campsite as we make terrariums and necklaces together! And, as things spring forward here in New York, I promise to share more news as well.
I have lived in New York for over seven years, and by now I feel at home. But on many days I still haul myself home, exhausted by the unexpected and unexplainable weight of daily life here. And after too many days in a row like that, it can take a grand gesture on the
Continue reading Starting with a Potato.
I’m currently working on a book, a crafter’s library companion. It’s going to have a bunch of library collection-inspired projects by a cast of talented contributors, and it’ll also include heaps of guidance to help you learn how to find and use library collections both in person and online for your own creative inspiration and
Continue reading This Librarian Wants to Know.