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Photography for Knitters

April 30, 2010, 19:31 pm  Posted by needlearts
 
Brenda Abdullah knitwear coat

Photograph from the Flickr photostream of eco-conscious needleart designer, Brenda Abdullah. You can accomplish this type of photograph with plenty of soft natural light and minimal gear. Notice how the wall's breezy green highlights the bold colors in the coat. A stunning piece like this wouldn't hurt your image, either.

I’m a digital photographer (among other things) who’s still failed to finish my first knitted washcloth after three years of knitting the occasional row, but I know plenty of crafters who struggle with finding affordable ways to photograph their work. If you hire the right professional, you’re bound to come up with something better than what your average point-and-shoot-camera-wielding layperson can muster, but who wants to drop hundreds or thousands of dollars for pro photos just to share your favorite scarf on Flickr with friends?

Well, with a little work and the right knowledge, you can get some good shots of your knits without overextending your budget. As always, the internet is an abundant resource for the info you need. The trick is wading through the junk to find the gems.

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You know it’s love…Seeking Sweetness via Cakespy.com

April 30, 2010, 13:42 pm  Posted by Lark
 

You know it’s love when a blog post makes you salivate. Not out of envy (hello, cute green sandals) or even boredom (insert high school government teacher here), but full-on cheek-cramping I-need-to-eat-that-RIGHT-NOW salivation.

This is what I usually experience when I visit one of my all-time favorite blogs: Cakespy.com.

Cakespy banner

Nope, not cakespie (although that is sort of relevant), nor anything to do with Sherlock Holmes. Cakespy—the art of sleuthing out sweetness everywhere. Genius, I tell you. And let’s be honest here: doesn’t that profession sound like one big ole’ slice of perfection to you? Because it occasionally makes me slightly woozy to think of spending every day researching bakeries, interviewing bakers, creating & testing recipes, and photographing delectable things like huckleberry bars and s’mores brownies. That is blogger Jessie Oleson’s life, friends. And she’s basically the coolest artist/chef/writer/host EVER.

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The DeStash Diaries, Vol. 1 – Kimono

April 30, 2010, 10:57 am  Posted by needlearts
 
banner

Fabric banners from repurposed kimono remnants

I have lots of fabric. And buttons, beads, sequins, vintage trim, threads, wool roving, silk roving, silk cocoons, rayon seam binding, dyestuffs, paints, paint sticks, metallic foil…I feel a little guilty even making the list, but the list leads directly to the topic of my musings. And I feel a little less guilty because even though I have lots of fabulous stuff, I made a rule (really, it’s more like a guideline, as Capt. Jack Sparrow would say) that I would use the fabulous stuff I already had to make, or do, other wondrous stuff with.

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Wedding Ring Search

April 30, 2010, 10:46 am  Posted by Lark
 

Oh, no, Joanna doesn’t do granulation!

However, last time I popped into her studio, I spotted a silver ring she’d made, the edge of which—not the outer side but the narrow edge—she’d decorated with tiny circles. She stamped them with little punches. Well, I think I’m going to ask her to stamp my ring. Check out this beauty, also from The Splendor of Ethnic Jewelry: From the Colette and Jean-Pierre Ghysels Collection, Harry N. Abrams Inc., Publishers.

It’s true that it’s hard to see much detail here. I looked at the photo with a loupe, and even then, I have to fill a lot of it in with my imagination. But that’s fine—this is just a starting point. Now I need to go home, draw a long, narrow rectangle to represent the ring band, and doodle circles and shapes on it to show what kind of design I’d like Joanna to stamp on my ring.

 
 
 
 
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The Creative Connection Event

April 29, 2010, 17:49 pm  Posted by Craft Your Life Team
 

Have you heard about The Creative Connection event coming up in Minneapolis this September? It’s a big three-day jam-session for creative women and women entrepreneurs with an all-star lineup of presenters and teachers. (Nice bonus is that it happens at the same time as and in partial conjunction with Junk Bonanza, the ultimate antiquing/vintage-ware fest.)

Lark Crafts is going. Hope you will be, too!

There’s a big feature on a recent episode of The DIY Dish. Check it out here:

 
 
 
 
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Billboard as Craft

April 29, 2010, 12:44 pm  Posted by Craft Your Life Team
 

image taken from colossalmedia.com

This was posted a week or so ago by Steven Heller and I thought I would share it with the Lark Crafts readers. “Up There” spotlights the modern resurgence of hand-painted billboard advertisements. In the digital age this is a dying craft – the ability to print and install very large scale, vinyl graphics in a short amount of time has all but made the old sign and billboard painters obsolete. “Up There” documents a handful of devoted and very talented artists who are keeping the art form alive, high above the streets of New York City, and cities worldwide.

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Sheets Clothing

April 29, 2010, 12:00 pm  Posted by Craft Your Life Team
 

There’s something about early summer that conjures up images of pretty floral sheets billowing on the line. Take a look at how some talented repurposers are bringing that line-dried, fresh-air vibe into their wardrobes – and (totally irresistible), the wardrobes of their little ones.

At her very fun and fashion-y blog, Keiko Lynn says if she scores vintages sheets that aren’t matching sets, she always makes clothing out of them. This skirt is from a fitted sheet.

vintage sheet skirt

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Stop Motion

April 27, 2010, 18:02 pm  Posted by Craft Your Life Team
 

Check out this cool stop-motion video one of our freelance photographers, Lynne Harty, created  for the recent Hatch Asheville, a fabulous innovation fest held in Lark’s backyard every spring:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=13iSzSriZ5w

Bonus: Background music provided by Crash Test Dummies, who I hear are finally in comeback mode!

 
 
 
 
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A web gather ’round

April 26, 2010, 14:12 pm  Posted by Lark
 

As the Lark art department gathered round to think about the look of our new website, I had to note the old means and methods we employed: printouts of our favorite sites pinned up on a board; pens used for thumbnail sketches; and a floor strewn with sheets of paper — all to take in a pixelated future represented by the computer screen on a side table. To contemplate the other world of Web design, and maybe the creative process itself, we still rely on the tangibility of a sheet of paper in our hands for the ideas we have in mind.

I will admit it: I am a Neo-Luddite and a lover of books as objects, whether they are filled with another’s ideas or jotted through with my own. For me, there’s no replacing the feel at my fingertips when turning a physical page. The publishing industry I work in is turning it’s own page to view a digital future. The Internet used to be something that lowered productivity by distracting workers, and now the Web underlies most emerging business models.

 
 
 
 
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The Paper Toy Phenomenon

April 26, 2010, 09:46 am  Posted by Lark
 

Have you noticed a lot more paper crafting going on out there? There seems to be a big resurgence happening. Origami, probably the oldest paper art, has been around a long, long time—since the first or second century in China—and has always been popular, but lately I’ve been seeing some pretty creative stuff being done with paper. Some illustrators have applied their illustrative talent and engineering skills to create ingenious 3-D paper toys. With slits and tabs, once folded their creations become freestanding. Some are stacked like paper totem poles, while others sport appendages and accessories. I find them fascinating and whimsical and gotta think they appeal to all ages.

paper postal robot

Spambot goes postal

Spambot parts

spambot-papercraft

Some of my favorite paper engineers like the uber-creative Dutch illustrator team LouLou and Tummie (creators of Spambot pictured above) offer awesome free pattern downloads on their sites—nice. Just for starters, check out www.kamimodel.com, www.loulouandtummie.com, www.custompapertoys.com, and www.marshallalexander.net. With just a printer, scissors, and some tape or glue, you’re set for an afternoon of freebie fun.