Creative Connection Book Giveaway

September 17, 2010, 14:45 pm  Posted by needlearts

Those of us around the office who weren’t lucky enough to travel to Creative Connection have enjoyed all the updates from our authors throughout the week. From interviews to Twitter dispatches, it’s almost like we were there. To keep the Creative Connection fun going, we have a special book giveaway for you!

This bundle includes a bunch of books from Lark authors who attended Creative Connection: Fabric Remix by Sandy Stone, Sew Tina by Tina Givens, Craft Corps by Vickie Howell, Bow Wow WOW by Cathie Filian, and French-Inspired Jewelry by Kaari Meng.

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Free Project Friday: Fabric Remix Redux

August 27, 2010, 08:00 am  Posted by needlearts

Coffee Bag LIner

We’re all abuzz about designer Sandy Stone this week—just wait ’til you see all the fabulous, funky, and fun projects in Fabric Remix, which hits bookstores on September 7.  (In fact, we’re having such a celebration that we’ve decided to extend it into next week, too, when we give away some free copies. Stay tuned.) Today Sandy made a special bonus project for our Friday giveaway, and you’ll never guess what she upcycled to create this unique accessory. Here’s a hint: Most of us couldn’t even get out of bed without its contents.

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Zipper Tapestry from Sandy Stone's Fabric Remix

The talented and über-creative Sandy Stone combines sewing, upholstery, and collage in her work, which can be charming, funky, cheeky, and beautiful—all at the same time, on occasion. Sandy’s first book, Fabric Remix, celebrates her clever transformation of recycled and salvaged materials into 35 of the coolest functional things you’ve ever seen. A satchel made from old canvas signage? A bolster from an old wool coat? A tote made from vintage obis and belts? All in a day’s work for Sandy. If you’re lucky enough to be in the Minneapolis area, see her work at hunt & gather, and do make plans to visit her and have your book signed at The Creative Connection event in mid-September. Here’s a quick Q & A with Sandy:

In the introduction to Fabric Remix, you discuss how difficult it is to describe exactly what you do, which is basically transforming old objects into new using all sorts of different techniques. Did you have an “a-ha!” moment when the notion of repurposing materials resonated with you?

I don’t recall any epiphany. In the early days of working with furniture, I painted designs onto canvas to create my own upholstery fabric. The designs were very vintage 1950’s inspired, mostly geometric and minimalist, but I grew tired of the process and never liked my designs as much as the actual clothing, neckties and scarves that they sprang from. Using the items themselves seemed to be the natural next step. My first repurposing project involved many neckties, I believe. I love piecing small things together to “grow” my own textiles.

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Month of Hope: Charity Profile

August 12, 2010, 08:30 am  Posted by needlearts

There are many wonderful charities listed in Craft Hope that use your handmade items to bring comfort and joy to those in need. I wanted to tell you about a cool organization—Krochet Kids International—that was featured in another one of our recent books. Here’s what AwareKnits authors Vickie Howell and Adrienne Armstrong had to say about this group:  

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Month of Hope: Designer Spotlight, Week 2

August 11, 2010, 08:00 am  Posted by Craft Your Life Team

The second week of Month of Hope takes a look at seven creative designers who contributed their time and talents both to Jade Sims’s wonderful book, Craft Hope, and to charitable causes worldwide. Join us in celebrating their work and the positive impact of the Craft Hope movement.

Céline Dupuy

Céline is the designer of the Mlle Kou easy patterns. Well known for her innovative sewing ideas, she creates stylish designs that are frequently featured in the pages of Marie Claire Idées. Céline is the author of the books Make Your Own Handbags and Simple Sewing with a French Twist. Since the birth of her son, Edgar, she splits her time between Paris and Poitiers, France. Her websites are www.celinedupuy.com and www.mllekou.com.

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Artist Feature: Joan Rzadkiewicz

July 15, 2010, 11:38 am  Posted by Craft Your Life Team

vickie howell

One of my favorite things about social networking is that it not only affords us the opportunity to be inspired by people worldwide whom we might not have ever crossed paths with otherwise, but also allows us to directly connect with them.   Such was the case with how I (virtually) met Canadian multi-media artist, Joan Rzadkiewicz.

While perusing Flickr one day, Joan found me asked if she could use one of my photos in her next installment. Although in hindsight I’m not really sure she needed me (she could’ve easily manipulated an unpainted light), I am thrilled and honored to have been a small part of what is truly a fantastic work!

Joan says, ” It was necessary to find the right objects to bring into each composition. As well as using borrowed images, I was photographing all kinds of things at home. I couldn’t always find what I wanted so it was sometimes necessary to drastically modify or construct entire objects from flat textures so I could get the right material quality, shape and angle. ”

A little background: the picture of mine she inquired about is of a chandelier I painted last year for an I Love to Create article. I’d been looking for a cool light-fixture for my the, unborn daughter. After being underwhelmed by the choices out there however, I decided to just funkify a boring one with a little paint. But I digress.

My Photo of Hand-Painted Chandelier

Ladies & gentlemen, may I present Joan’s digital composition series: Calling Planet Earth! Look closely my friends, to fully explore the dioramic worlds she’s created using found photo’s set inside re-imagined, television skeletons.

"Blast Off"

"Space View"

"Historic Moment"

Soirée Lounger

“Television, as it has been known for so many decades, is undergoing some change, merging into dynamic networks of technology, no longer confined to a single piece of furniture. I found myself looking at an old television set and for the first time began to realize the nostalgic side of this object that has been long associated with the push to the future. Recalling how young children sometimes thought that there were real people and places inside their home TV, it seemed like an interesting project to actually set up a little microcosm inside a television.”

Interesting Joan, indeed.  Your work is amazing!



Travis Nichols interview

July 14, 2010, 14:49 pm  Posted by Craft Your Life Team

The following is an excerpt of Vickie Howell’s interview with Travis Nichols. The full interview can been seen in her book: Craft Corps

VH: What’s your first craft-related memory?

TN: In second grade, I used to make pop-up books in school with a couple of other kids, just for fun. I learned how to make springs out of paper by folding pieces over on themselves. Then, I would pop out stuff like monsters, swords, or things like that.

VH: Is there a moment from your childhood connected to craft that really stands out for you?

TN: Indirectly, my mom and dad always encouraged us to be creative and make things.

VH: Were they artists themselves?

TN: Yes. My mom’s now a full-time photographer, after teaching for 30 years. My dad was primarily a musician. My uncle was an artist. So art is always something I’ve been around, and people have encouraged me to do it.

VH: Do you have a memory as a professional artist that will always stick with you?

TN: When I had my first solo art show, I realized that aside from just making crafts and art, I really like putting shows together and packaging the things I do into presentation form.

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July 09, 2010, 12:41 pm  Posted by Craft Your Life Team

In preparation for The Big Crafty this weekend, the Craft Your Life team created these super-cute, limited edition buttons. Come by and visit the Lark Crafts table and pick up a FREE button! We’ll be on the lower level of Pack Place, near the cupcakes and refreshments. (Perfection.)

While you’re at it, you can snag a copy of Vickie Howell’s Craft Corps. We’ll have limited copies on hand; buy yours before they run out! This amazing book features interviews with 30 top artists and designers, plus snapshots of 60 everyday crafters. Discover the inspiration and influences behind some of the biggest names in the craft community, and how they got their start–through craft fairs, personal blogs, meetups, and more. It’s big fun, and the perfect take-home read from the Crafty.

With so much to see and do, this summer’s Big Crafty promises to be the best yet. So stop by and say hello, and make sure you visit the tables of the following Lark authors and contributors. See you Sunday!

Skin to Skin by Nathalie Mornu


Short Street Cakes

the uncommon kid
The Uncommon Kid

Alli Good

sara westermark jewelry

margaret cogswell

Julie Armbruster
Julie Armbruster

Catzilla Crafts


Dawn Dalto


The DeStash Diaries, Vol. 7—Too Tarn Hot!

June 29, 2010, 13:28 pm  Posted by needlearts

We’re having a little (that’s an understatement) heat wave in Asheville, so everyone is wearing knit Ts and tanks—as little we can get away with, honestly. But we all know that our fave knits eventually get too grungy to wear, so here’s an inventive repurposing project from AwareKnits™.

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Stitched Teacher Gifts

June 03, 2010, 06:59 am  Posted by Craft Your Life Team

Embroidered napkin detail

Ah, the annual scramble to come up with the perfect way to thank those superheroes among us who arrive at work at the crack of dawn, develop lesson plans and respond to fretful emails from parents until late into the night, and in between manage to guide, inspire, encourage, impart wisdom, and perform some of the most amazing feats of conflict resolution and crowd control I have ever witnessed.

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