Are We in a Crafts Movement About to Die?

Posted 26 October 2011 at 11:01 PM | Comments (0)

The New York Times published a very interesting article today, “All That Authenticity May Be Getting Old.”

It’s about the crafts movement that we’re currently in—where artists are producing more and more “unique,” vintage, or handmade objects; major retailers are selling them, and we’re going crazy buying them. But this desperate need to have “authentic” items in our home is becoming pretty predictable and boring. Which is exactly what we were trying to avoid!

Here’s an excerpt:

“People are looking for things that are authentic,” [Maxwell Gillingham-Ryan] said. “I think it started happening after 2001: first there was 9/11, followed by recession. There was a certain exhaustion with the shiny and perfect. People didn’t relate to it anymore.”

But as Dmitri Siegel put it:

“When you pile Etsy on top of Etsy, it gets really cacophonous: ‘Everything in here is totally unique!’ It starts canceling itself out.”


As they began furnishing their new house from scratch, they found themselves choosing pieces with clean, modern lines that “could be a backdrop for whatever we were interested in at the moment,” Mr. Siegel said. In other words, he said, “not trying to express your personality and your total individuality with every single thing in your house.”

Peek-A-Boo Pumpkins

Posted 13 October 2011 at 3:48 PM | Comments (0)

Oh my gosh, I am all over this! I’m not big on crafting, but I like a simple, inexpensive project, so this one is right up my alley.

Halloween Peek-A-Boo Pumpkins by Layla Palmer

Halloween Peek-A-Boo Pumpkins by Layla Palmer of The Lettered Cottage. Simple, doable, and adorable!

Favorites from the J.Crew September 2011 Catalog

Posted 8 September 2011 at 3:50 PM | Comments (0)

It’s unfortunate (or fortunate, really) that my J.Crew obsession began just weeks before my one-year shopping hiatus. Well, I’m still happily flipping through their September catalog as if my next purchase was just a click away (not a chance! So no need to stage an intervention).

Anyway, I cut out four of my favorite looks from their catalog and glued them to a boring manila file folder for a bit of inspiration and pizzazz.

Favorite Looks from the September 2011 J.Crew Catalog

And then my three year-old added his own pizzazz.

Three-Year Old's Interpretation of a J.Crew Catalog

Now my personal papers are being well looked-after.

To take a closer look at these catalog pages, click: page 6, page 32, page 50, page 82.

Vintage Girly Bridal Shower Invitation

Posted 23 January 2011 at 1:30 AM | Comments (0)

I found a vintage paper cut-out online that makes me want to create my own. Unfortunately it could be ages before that miraculous day comes, so in the meantime, I used it as an overlay in this girly, high-tea invitation.

I love that this puts me in the mood for a party!

Vintage Girly High-Tea Bridal Shower Invitation

Golden Pumpkins

Posted 6 October 2010 at 1:09 PM | Comments (3)

I was just thumbing through an old issue of Country Living and remembered how much I loved this article on gilded pumpkins. It may not even be necessary to go through all the steps for gilding (though it does look sumptuously beautiful), because a simple paint job could do.

I’d buy medium-sized pumpkins and paint them autumn-appropriate bronze, copper, and gold.

Gilded Pumpkins from Country Living Magazine

On a side note, this is the kind of thing that makes me miss the U.S. terribly. Fall doesn’t really exist here—there are no changing leaves; no foggy vapor from breathing in cold air; no football games, pumpkin picking, nor hot apple cider. If I wear a Fair Isle sweater, no one gets it, and if I want a pumpkin spice latte, I’d have to get on a plane.

Oh, I couldn’t be more homesick than I am right this minute.

Tree (and Ladybug) Craft

Posted 21 August 2010 at 8:54 PM | Comments (0)

One of the biggest misconceptions people have about me as a graphic designer is that, since I spend so much of my time designing, illustrating, and thinking about design, I must enjoy arts and crafts. Unfortunately, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Beyond drawing, there’s not much excitement for me in paper crafts like cutting, pasting, or scrapbooking. When people tell me about their exciting craft projects because they think I’ll be able to relate, I just nod my head and smile.

That said, having a toddler—and not having a television or car—has forced me to get crafty at times. It’s hard; I find it tedious. Draw for hours? Sure! Crafts? Uggghhh, shoot me.

Anyway, you get the point. I’m going on about this because I want you to know that if I can do it, you can do it. You may think you don’t have a creative bone in your body and that cutting and pasting with your toddler sounds like a dud afternoon, but not only can you do it, the delight on your toddler’s face will make it all worth it. I promise.

On to the craft! Okay, while my child was napping in the middle of the day, I pulled out paper and scissors (I’m not a crafter, so these things aren’t handy; I bought them the day before) and began cutting. I cut out a brown tree and a lot of green leaves. When he woke up, we, one-by-one, put glue on the back of everything and pasted them onto blue paper. It was so enjoyable for him to decide how the leaves would be arranged (though I had to gently redirect him at times, since he just wanted to stack all the leaves on top of each other).

When we were done, I pointed out an empty blue space on the left and asked what he wanted to put there. He said, “A ladybug!” So, I cut out a ladybug for him and we pasted that down, too.

The project is so bright and clean that it makes a great addition to his bedroom wall. He proudly shows it off to all our visitors.

Though I might as well be the one showing it off—I’m equally proud, if not prouder, of our accomplishment.

Tree and Ladybug Craft for Kids