Giveaway of “Craft-a-Doodle” by Jenny Doh!

August 30, 2013, 08:31 am  Posted by Beth Sweet

 This month we celebrated the release of Craft-a-Doodle by Jenny Doh, a new book featuring the work of 18 talented artists who share inventive prompts and how-to exercises to jump-start and expand your love of playful drawing.

Essentially, you walk out onto the diving board of Craft-a-Doodle, you happily wiggle your toes to the edge, and then you leap, carefree, into a pool of creative inspiration designed for the doodler inside all of us. Really, it’s that fun.

No matter how minutely detailed or expressively free form your doodling tends to be, you’ll find springboards galore among the book’s 75 exercises. From artful creations to clever uses of shape, pattern, color, line, and texture, Craft-a-Doodle has got you covered.


Feeling eager to find the giveaway info?

Scroll down, friend—it’s at the bottom of the post.

Take a peek inside for a mini-tour of Craft-a-Doodle!


Let colors bloom in a spray of flowers from Cori Dantini


Illustrate the events of your day with Gemma Correll


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cover of Hand in Hand by Jenny DohWe are so very happy to share with you our new book,

Hand in Hand: Crafting with Kids by Jenny Doh,

a celebration of the joyful art of crafting with kids.


Twenty top parenting bloggers share imaginative craft projects to make with kids of all ages: from a cardboard cityscape and papier-mâché masks to felted falling stars and DIY stilts, it’s all about sharing simple moments and making lasting memories.



photo from Hand in Hand by Jenny Doh

Chances are you’re a creative person. Maybe you are an inventor in the kitchen, maybe you recently made scarves for everyone in your extended family, maybe you designed and planted raised beds in your garden. Whatever your pursuit may be, you probably derive great happiness from making something.

photo from Hand in Hand by Jenny Doh

We’re all creative in such different ways, but I’m willing to bet that we each grew up with the idea of creativity modeled for us somehow, whether it was a family member, a teacher, or a mentor who helped us understand what creativity might mean. Some of us spent our childhood immersed in the idea of being creative, while others of us may not have identified as a maker-of-things until later in life.

However your creative history may have unfolded, it’s likely that you have a creative history.

Hand in Hand: Crafting with Kids aims to spark and feed that joyful creativity for the kids in your life, encouraging you to journey with them as they carve a creative history for themselves.

photo from Hand in Hand by Jenny Doh


To celebrate the release of this wonderful book, we’re hosting a giveaway! One lucky reader will receive a copy of Hand in Hand by Jenny Doh. To enter for a chance to win, please leave a comment on this post by 11:59 pm EST on Friday, May 11. Any comment is fine, though I’d love to hear about the person or people who helped you understand the meaning of creativity—whose words and actions have inspired you to create?

One winner will be selected at random from among all eligible entries and notified by Monday, May 14. Click here for the official rules.


Learn a bit more about the designers and bloggers featured in Hand in Hand:

Jackie Boucher :: weelife

Samantha Cotterill :: Mummy Sam

Jenny Doh :: Crescendoh

Maya Donenfeld :: maya*made

Ali Edwards :: AE Blog

Rachel Faucett :: Handmade Charlotte

Pam Garrison :: Pam Garrison

Abby Glassenberg :: While She Naps

Cindy Hopper :: Skip to my Lou

Beki Lambert :: Artsy-Crafty Babe

Merrilee Liddiard :: mer mag

Jhoanna Monte :: One Red Robin

Jessica Okui :: Zakka Life

Ella Pedersen :: Little Red Caboose

Carly Schwerdt :: Nest Studio

Amanda Blake Soule :: soule mama

Nicole Spring :: Frontier Dreams

Jean Van’t Hul :: The Artful Parent

Dana Willard :: MADE

Kristin Zecchinelli :: Maine Momma


Want a glimpse into Hand in Hand?

Check out this PDF of the Tissue Paper Lantern project created by Kristin Zecchinelli.



If I were entering this giveaway, it would be difficult to point to just one person who has helped me understand creativity, since I’ve been so very fortunate to grow up with creative parents, grandparents, teachers, friends, and role models. But I will point to one person: I’d like to shine a spotlight on my dad.


Every day before school, my dad would draw a picture and my name on my lunch bag: I still remember the one where a man was fishing in a small boat and his fishing line had caught the B in Beth, while the e, t, and h were still swimming underwater. My dad is also an incredible baker, and when I was growing up he’d include me in the delicious, silly, and fun process of making Bubble Bread together. Standing next to him, breathing in the scent of yeast and cinnamon and rolling dough into little spheres was such a treat. His enthusiasm for making something by hand combined with his love of sharing that with me is a very big part of why I, too, love to bake and make things by hand, many years later. Thanks, Dad.




Giveaway of Quilled Flowers & Paper Quilling Kit

March 30, 2012, 09:18 am  Posted by Beth Sweet

It’s spring! (Well, in western North Carolina it’s spring. Happy autumn, all you southern hemisphere folks.) Spring is such a joyful season: trees blossom overnight, birds and little critters celebrate the warming days, and the earth erupts with petals, leaves, and a cacophony of color. We’re joyful for spring because it marks the publication of Quilled Flowers by Alli Bartkowski—a celebration of paper quilling and 35 beautiful paper projects!

Quilled Flowers book, paper quilling kit, zinnia flowers

To celebrate the release of this gorgeous book, we’re hosting a giveaway! One lucky winner will receive:

A copy of Quilled Flowers; a kit of quilling tools and supplies to get you started; and three original quilled zinnia flowers made by Alli in the book! (These little beauties are perfect as gift toppers, as they’re just the right size for prettying up a package, envelope, or sweet little box.)

The quilling starter kit includes tools and materials manufactured by Alli’s quilling supply company, Quilled Creations:

-a slotted tool

-a needle tool

-a package of quilling paper in a rainbow of colors

-a 3-dimensional shaping tool (known as a mini mold)


This giveaway is closed–congratulations to Nimisha for being the winner!

To enter for a chance to win, please leave a comment on this post by 11:59 pm EST on Friday, April 6. Any comment is fine, though I’d love to hear about your favorite flower—why do you love it? One winner will be selected at random from among all eligible entries and notified by Friday, April 13.

Click here for the official rules.


Want to learn more about Alli and her creative inspiration? Read my interview with Alli Bartkowski here.


Curious about quilling? Visit my post explaining the art and exploring quilled work by a collection of artists.



Giving Handmade: Gift-Giving by Hand

November 21, 2011, 16:44 pm  Posted by Beth Sweet

Happy Holidays, friends! ‘Tis the season for gratitude, joy, and delighting in the company of folks we love. It’s also the season of gift-giving, and for those of us with a bit of a crafty streak, it’s the time of year to be making the handmade gifts we’ll give to friends and family (those lucky ducks).


Whether you’ve been planning your holiday gifts since this time last year, or you’re just now starting to dip your toes into the holiday spirit, we’re right there with you. That’s why we’re excited about our season of Giving Handmade blog posts: we’ll be celebrating the holidays “by hand” with gift ideas, tutorials, free project PDFs, tasty recipes, editors’ picks, author insights, and creative takes on what makes this time of year very merry.


Here’s our current list of the Giving Handmade posts–we hope it inspires you to create and share some holiday cheer:

Sweet Finds: Peppermint Recipes

Giving Handmade: Sweet Trio Embroidery Ornaments

Giving Handmade: Sewn Case for a Tablet/E-reader

Quick Last-Minute (Yet Awesome) Holiday Gifts to Make

Gallery Book Bundle Giveaway: Felted, Stitched, and Quilted Inspiration

Free Project: Holiday Paper Lanterns

The Great Viking Holiday Giveaway

It’s a Wrap: DIY Gift-Wrapping Ideas

Giveaway of 38 Jewelry Books

Holiday Wishlists for Jewelry Books: Lists from Lark’s Jewelry Authors  

Giving Handmade: Felt Blooms Wreath Project

Making Candy: A Recipe for Fruit Jam Jellies from “Sweet Confections”

An Ottlite Craft Lamp Review & Giveaway

Free Project from Fa La La La Felt: A Thank You

The 5 Most Charming Fabric Gift Wrap Projects for the Holidays

Bead Book Giveaway: 21 Beading Books for the Holidays

Sew Merry! A Sewing Book Giveaway

Free Project from “Pretty in Patchwork: Holidays” – Gingerbread Men Apron

Holiday Wishlists for Beading Books: Lists from Lark’s Beading Authors

Gingerbread Houses: Photos & Links for Holiday Inspiration

Vote for Your Favorites: Top 50 Holiday Season Icons to Stitch

Giveaway of Felt Gingerbread House & Holiday Tree Ornaments

Gift Idea: Handmade Scarves & Neck Warmers

Giving Handmade: Project for a Holiday List Holder

Thanksgiving Deliciousness: A Recipe for Stuffed Pumpkins

Giving Handmade Kick-off: A Season of Gift-Giving by Hand (and a Giveaway)


*Keep an eye out for upcoming Giving Handmade posts through our Lark Crafts Twitter and Facebook updates. Happy holidays!



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Sweet Confections: a (very sweet) Giveaway

September 09, 2011, 11:52 am  Posted by Beth Sweet

Sweet Tooth Aficionados—rejoice! We are so very pleased to announce the publication of Sweet Confections: Beautiful Candy to Make at Home by Nina Wanat. With step-by-step photos and a clear and friendly voice, Nina guides you through the ins and outs of making candy in your own home kitchen.

Luscious chocolate fudge, crunchy golden peanut brittle, melt-in-your-mouth pear hazelnut truffles, sugarplums, lollipops, and coconut shells: they’re enough to make a person feel weak in the knees, and they’re only some of the 40 recipes found in this delicious journey through the world of handmade candy. I could list them all, but I thought you might like a little eye candy to tell the tale (sorry, I can’t avoid perfect puns like that one). Here are a couple quick page snapshots:


Chocolate Stars


Fruit Jam Jellies


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A Safari & Giveaway

June 28, 2011, 08:20 am  Posted by Beth Sweet

We’re quickly nearing the close of our Bird Love Blogiversary month, but it just didn’t seem right to wrap up the month of June without a bit of adventure and one last giveaway (details at the end of the post). So button up your khaki shirt, pull on your wide-brimmed canvas hat, and keep those binoculars handy. We’re going on a SAFARI, and you never know what we may find.


Now, very quietly, look through those bushes.

No—those bushes over there.

Do you see that?! (Shh! Whisper!) It’s a creature very rare in this geographical area.

A shy animal, usually content to travel alone. Prefers leafy shade.

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Masters: Book Arts + a book arts giveaway

May 09, 2011, 08:45 am  Posted by Beth Sweet

We’re currently celebrating a re-design of LarkCrafts.com (looks pretty cool, right?), which happens to coincide with a spring season filled with incredible Lark books landing on shelves.

cover image of Masters Book Arts

One of the gorgeous titles to be released this spring is Masters: Book Arts, a stunning collection of work by 43 master book artists. Curated by Eileen Wallace, Masters: Book Arts celebrates the design, craftsmanship, and innovation of contemporary book arts, and features a striking array of techniques from letterpress, collage, and printmaking to carving, photography, and stitching. A spectrum of book binding methods is explored, and artists’ messages touch on subjects of whimsy, reflection, performance, and mystery.

Each featured master artist takes center stage in an informative eight-page chapter that includes gorgeous photos, illuminating personal quotes, and a short essay by Eileen Wallace, providing a distinctive portrait of each artist and their impressive work. The book is truly a pleasure to behold.

In celebration of the release of Masters: Book Arts, we’re giving away six Lark titles that showcase the art of the book—books on Books, if you will—[Masters: Book Arts, 500 Handmade Books, Making Handmade Books, Eco Books, The Penland Book of Handmade Books, and Live & Learn: Real Life Journals].

photo of six stacked book arts books

To enter for a chance to win this swoon-worthy collection, please leave a comment on this post by 9 p.m. EST on Sunday, May 15th. One winner will be selected at random from among all eligible entries, and notified by Wednesday, May 18th. Click here for the official rules. Congratulations to Susan who said,Love looking at the covers of those books! So inviting!” Hope you enjoy your new stack of books on books, Susan!

thumbnail images of six book covers


Focus: Found Faces – a giveaway!

March 16, 2011, 14:39 pm  Posted by Beth Sweet

Have you ever been hiking along, enjoying the scenery, when without warning you come face to face with, well, a face? Not a human face—I mean an unexpected face. A pair of eyes, a quizzical set of brows, an upturned mouth or an expression that mirrors your own—a face made of nature, of your surroundings.

Greg Booher's "Evil Clown" & David Dunsmore's "Drain Brain"

Welcome to the world of found faces—from warehouse windows, tree leaves, and sweater cuffs to onion rings, egg yolks, and beach stones—faces are all around us.

Focus: Found Faces, the third book in our Focus series, celebrates this compelling art and the global community of photographers who reveal what is often right in front of our eyes. Shadows, staplers, phone cords, and doorknobs have all resonated with their masterful discovery of familiar features in the world at hand, and when asked how they uncover these surprising visages, many photographers responded that they did not do the finding—the faces found them.

Over 90 photographers from 26 countries are featured within the pages of Focus: Found Faces, along with their written reflections on the process of discovery. Their photos and words range from hilarity to mystery, and many reflect the astonishing delight we feel when we, too, encounter found faces.

As a team, we Craft Your Life folks hit the streets of downtown Asheville, NC, along with the walls and halls of our office, to hunt for faces. Here’s a fun collection of what we found!

faces found by Linda, Travis, Kathleen, Kristi, Nicole, and Beth (Focus: Found Faces is dog-approved)

Jean-Yves Leblon's "The Vinaigrette Man"


We are celebrating the release of Focus: Found Faces by giving away TWO copies of the book—one copy to each of two winners. To enter for a chance to win, please leave a comment on this post by 9 p.m. EST on Wednesday, March 23. Any comment is fine—though I’d love to hear if you’ve ever run into or hunted for found faces—when you look around, what do you see? Winners will be selected at random from among all eligible entries, and notified by Friday, March 25. Click here for the official rules.


The Season of Giving: a Craft Hope Giveaway

November 29, 2010, 10:14 am  Posted by Beth Sweet

As we celebrate the season of giving thanks and head into the season of giving, this can be such a full and busy time of year: we plan for Thanksgiving in its many forms; we reflect on our love of family and friends; we turn inward to the coziness and warmth of our homes; and we think of gifts to create which celebrate a season of light and love. It’s enough to fill half the year, and we end up squeezing it between Halloween and New Year’s—what a fast-paced holiday season it can be.

It’s easy to be caught up in the list-making, the have-tos, the present wrapping and recipe-trying, and the work (joyful as it may be) of fulfilling the traditions and aspirations we set for ourselves. I don’t know about you, but I feel quite proud of myself if I can manage to keep my kitchen moderately clean during this time of year, and I consider it a triumph if I’ve purchased the poinsettia for my kitchen table (it stands in for a real Christmas tree—those of us with tiny apartments need to be clever when it comes to holiday plant decor). I’m also lucky to realize that it’s a blessing and a choice to say, “There’s just so much—too much—to do during the holiday season.”

It’s often a choice to feel and be busy right now: maybe you know what I mean—maybe you’re checking off a holiday to-do list right now (stocking stuffer for Jeff, coconut macaroons for vet office) or possibly a new one is sitting next to you as you read this. Though who knows, maybe you’re blissfully enjoying a holiday count down without a sense of pressure or deadline (um, if you are, please come help me bake cookies).

Wherever you are on the Busy Spectrum, I’d like to share this idea and question with you: does your checklist include the name of someone in need? Amidst the excitement and comfort of the holidays, we have an opportunity to give in so many ways—our time, our creativity, our hospitality, our love. In what ways might we also contribute those gifts to organizations founded on the principle of helping others?

Earlier this year I was fortunate enough to work on Craft Hope: Handmade Crafts for a Cause—a book that thoughtfully pairs instructions for handcrafted projects with charities in need. Working with its author, Jade Sims, and the incredible designers featured within its pages was a privilege, and I was constantly inspired and touched by their innovation and generosity. My eyes were also opened to the missions of dozens of charities profiled in Craft Hope. From cancer treatment centers to adoption nonprofits, Craft Hope suggests ways in which we can reach out locally, nationally, and globally through the simple act of sharing handmade creativity with others.

To spread the seeds of inspiration, I’ve listed below some of the charities profiled in Craft Hope. I encourage you to visit their sites and find out how you can add your compassion to their cause this holiday season.

Global Impact www.charity.org

Pan de Vida www.pdvmex.org

Project Night Night www.projectnightnight.org

Orphan Foundation of America www.orphan.org

ORPHANetwork www.orphanetwork.org

Knobit Sante Cap-Haitien Health Partnership www.konbitsante.org

Jewish Family Service of Seattle www.jfsseattle.org

SOME (So Others Might Eat) www.some.org

Margaret’s Hope Chest www.margaretshopechest.com

Youth Action International www.youthactioninternational.org

The Care Bags Foundation www.carebags4kids.org

The Yarnery’s Mitten Fairy Project www.yarnery.com

Little Red Wagon Foundation www.littleredwagonfoundation.com

Operation Sock Monkey www.operationsockmonkey.com

Giving Children Hope www.gchope.org

Miracle Foundation www.miraclefoundation.org

Starlight Children’s Foundation www.starlight.org/crafthope

The Preemptive Love Coalition www.preemptivelove.org

Children of the Forest www.childrenoftheforest.com

Alex’s Lemonade Stand www.alexslemonade.org

MD Anderson Cancer Center www.mdanderson.org

SafePlace www.safeplace.org

**Giveaway info**

To celebrate this season of giving, we’re giving away a copy of Craft Hope: Handmade Crafts for a Cause. We hope it inspires you to share your time, creativity, and love with those in need of care, a helping hand, and hope.

To be entered for a chance to win a copy of Craft Hope, leave a comment on this post by 9:00 p.m. EST on Monday, December 6th. You’re welcome to post any comment, though I’d love to hear how you plan to celebrate this season of giving. One winner will be selected at random and contacted by Friday, December 10th. Click here for the official rules.


Focus: Passages & Focus: Love GIVEAWAY

October 25, 2010, 08:40 am  Posted by Beth Sweet

Have you ever been walking through town or on a morning hike when you came to a standstill, entranced by something that caught your eye? Perhaps it was something out of the ordinary, such as a child’s sidewalk chalk drawing, or perhaps it was something unexpected, such as a brightly-colored alley door you’d never noticed before. Did you then reach into your pocket or your pack and pull out your camera–professional, personal, polaroid, or phone–and capture that intriguing image? If so, you’ll appreciate our Focus series, which celebrates the art of the unexpected photo and the community of photographers who embrace and encourage our infatuation with the visual image.

Our first title, Focus: Love, explores the enigmatic and compelling nature of the heart: a wrought iron heart in a gate; a candle flame flickering in the shape of a heart; tree leaves, oyster shells, uncurling fiddlehead ferns, clouds, graffiti, even cobblestones all assume this familiar shape in oftentimes unfamiliar places.

Our second title, Focus: Passages, delves into the photographic community’s passion for the evocative power of doors, tunnels, and other passageways: bright city doors; moss-covered hideaways; underground tunnels; stained-glass cathedral entries; open or closed, each passage has a story to tell or questions to ask.

In celebration of the recent release of Focus: Passages, we’d like to share a very cool book trailer with you:

We’d also like to GIVE these books to one of you! We are giving away a copy of Focus: Passages and its fellow Focus title Focus: Love. To be entered for a chance to win these two books, please leave a comment on this post by 9 p.m. EST on Monday, November 1st. One winner will be selected at random on Thursday, November 4th. Click here for the official rules.

We asked the photographers in Focus: Passages to reflect on the nature of passageways and what the concept of a “door” means to them. Here are a few of their quotes:

“To me, a door symbolizes the liminal space between one place and another. A door equals transition, metamorphosis, progress, opportunity, and the unknown. Yet it also equals a sense of comfort and a sense of home.” –J.C. Fink

“The world is full of doors, both actual and imagined. A closed door is a mystery that urges us to solve it, while an open door is an invitation to a friendlier place. Is something hidden behind a closed door? Is that door a test? What if we opened it and walked into a secret world?” –Christian Cable

“A door is like the wrapping paper on a present. You never know what you’ll find—a room, a tunnel, a staircase—until you open it.” –Pirlouiiiit

“Doors hold the promise of a new experience.” –Pace Ebbesen

“Every door takes us to a different world. Every door is a silent witness of history. When I see a special door and capture its image, it makes me think of the people who have crossed its threshold.” –Leonardo Ramon Diaz

“A door is a connection between two worlds—my own familiar one and an unknown one. A door is a thin film that’s easily—and not so easily—penetrated, a boundary between two worlds that are possibly in conflict.” –Abel Pau Garcia

“As a photographer and wandering spirit, I view doors as symbols of possibility and hope.” –Stephanie Hatzakos

*Also! Keep your eyes peeled for the third and fourth titles in our Focus series due on shelves next spring: Focus: Found Faces and Focus: Letters.