Interview with Kirstin & Jo @ KoJo Designs

Congrats to Kirstin and Jordan for their win of Season 5!  Here’s a little more about them.  If this isn’t enough info to satisfy or you want to see their projects from the season, check out their bio page.

1.Tell us a little about you and your blog.

Our blog started as a glorified to-do list… well, that and a way to keep track of all of our paper crafting. We’d see all sorts of fabulous things online or make a set of wedding invitations and put them on the blog. Somewhere along the way, Jordan got more into photography and Kirstin learned to sew (well, it’s a work in progress) and the kojodesigns blog became a way to share our sewing creations and pictures as well.
2.How and when did you start crafting?

Jordi’s “entry point” to the world of crafting was a set of painting lessons she took in 5th grade at a local art studio. In elementary school (maybe junior high?) she also had quite the love affair with Fimo clay. Kirst’s introduction into the crafting world was scrapbooking. These were great- construction paper, crazy edge scissors and awful themed stickers-kind of great.
3.How often do you craft?

Hmmmm… right now? We try to work on something every day, but sometimes that just doesn’t happen.
4.Where do you get your inspiration?

Nature, travel, boutiques, magazines, blogs; we love nothing more than just wandering around and looking at beautiful things, all the while trying to figure out how to make them ourselves.
5.What is your favorite medium to work in?

Paper crafting is our first love… And right now, Jordan is behind a camera lens as often as possible and Kirstin absolutely loves sewing as many handmade dresses for Miss Piper Jane (and her nieces!) as possible.
6.What is your guilty pleasure?

Kirst- watching The Bachelor… I know it’s so cheesy, but it’s just so darn entertaining.
Jord- bacon. If I knew the world was going to end in 24 hours, I would make myself a pound (or two!) of bacon.
7.What makes you smile?

Our husbands… Our kids, our siblings, our parents… Dark chocolate… A well planned party… Wandering through Target sans children… A good night of sleep… Ikea (neither of us have one nearby, so it’s a special treat!)… Planning a trip… Happy hour at Sonic… The knob bins at Anthropoligie…
8.What is your favorite thing to do (other than crafting)?

In unison- TRAVEL!

Interview with Mandy @ Sugar Bee Craft Edition

Mandy was our runner up during Season 5.  She was one of the favorites all season and did some great stuff (remember the leaf rosette wreath?  She got kudos all over blogland for that one)!  If you’d like to see a full list of all the projects Mandy did for SYTYC check out her bio page.

1.Tell us a little about you and your blog.

Like a bunch of craft blogs out there, I started my craft blog when I felt like I was overloading my family blog with crafty projects. And now that they have a place of their own, it just grows and grows and I love that I can share projects with the world. I feel like if I can do something, then you can too, so my crafts are typically something we can all tackle. I love doing tutorials to put the how-to out there for everyone. I have a link party on Tuesdays and each week look forward to seeing what everyone has to show off. In addition to crafts and sewing, I touch on recipes and photography tips. My craft blog is such a fun hobby for me – and I love sharing that with everyone! You can come buzz by at

2.How and when did you start crafting?

I think I’ve been crafting since grade-school. Friendship bracelets, magazine beads, loop potholders, cross-stitch – I was in on all of that! I think that I’ve had a renewed passion for crafting in the past couple of years now that my kids are getting a little older and I feel like I’m finally settling into life.

3.How often do you craft?

Crafting seems to come in waves. I work on a bunch of things, daily, then can go a week without making anything. It’s like I read – I read several books, then don’t read a book for a couple of months.

4.Where do you get your inspiration?

Everywhere!! Mainly other craft blogs – the craft blog world is HUGE, with so many great crafters showing their amazing work. I also love to flip through magazines of inspirational things and see what type of items I might be able to copy.

5.What is your favorite medium to work in?

It has to be fabric. I might be a designer fabric addict – which is kind of funny because I’m really frugal, but I don’t hesitate to spend money on good quality, fabulous fabric. I could browse fabric for days – stare at it, feel it, dream…..

6.What is your guilty pleasure?

Besides crafting?….Probably ice cream – always have ice cream in the house. When I think I should eat healthier, I just by frozen yogurt instead :), but not having a frozen treat in the house just doesn’t seem to be an option.

7.What makes you smile?

The everyday life of being a mom of my kids – they are so fun and funny! I love to see them interact with each other and with me. Family is what it’s all about and brings me true joy and happiness.

8.What is your favorite thing to do (other than crafting)?

Obviously crafting, but with that nixed, I would say taking pictures of my kids, editing photos, etc. I have an awful memory so if I capture things in pictures I can remember those moments forever.

Interview with Chica & Jo

1.Tell us a little about you and your blog.
We are Chica and Jo! We are family-oriented, fun-loving women who
enjoy tackling life one project at a time. We created our Web site, to share our ideas to help inspire you to tap into your
creative side whether you are figuring out a new use for a thrift
store find, planning this year’s most talked about party or helping
your kids create a masterpiece. When she isn’t in the craft room,
Chica spends time with her husband and her giant German Shepherd,
Jack. They enjoy boating on a local lake and trying out new
restaurants. Jo spends her free time with her husband and two
daughters on their horse farm. The oldest daughter has a knack for
crafting as well and is getting ready to start her own Web site to
teach other kids how to craft. We want to thank you for taking the
time to get to know us a little better and would love for you to stop
by to let us meet you!

2.How and when did you start crafting?
Jo first remembers crafting when she was about four. Her grandmother
received flower seed catalogs in the mail. She loved the pictures so
much, she started making collages out of them and homemade cards for
her family. When Chica was about 6, she wanted more furniture and
clothes for her Barbie dolls so she decided to get industrious and
make her own!

3.How often do you craft?
We do some sort of craft every day. You must exercise those creative muscles.

4.Where do you get your inspiration?
From each other mostly. We work really well as a team and our ideas
are truly a collaborative effort. Of course, we are also inspired a
lot by all of the other crafters on the internet. We love what a
great online community there is among crafters.

5.What is your favorite medium to work in?
We love working with common items and trying to figure out another use
for them. Blue jeans are a favorite of ours. We have made quilts,
scrapbooks, water bottle holders and aprons out of old blue jeans.

6.What is your guilty pleasure?
We both love reality television. We can’t wait for each season of
Project Runway to start. And Survivor!

7.What makes you smile?
Jo’s two little girls make her smile and an ice cold McDonald’s diet
Coke doesn’t hurt either. Chica loves her dog, Jack and her niece
Emily always says something that will make her crack a smile.

8.What is your favorite thing to do (other than crafting)?
We both love to travel. Especially to our favorite vacation spot,
Sanibel Island, Florida.

*You can see Chica and Jo’s SYTYC crafts on her bio page*

Interview with Nikki @ Lily Bug Designs

1. Tell us a little about you and your blog.

I’m an interior designer, but am currently a stay at home mom who just recently started blogging.  My blog (LilyBug Designs) is a place that I post the projects I completed.

2. How and when did you start crafting?

I took my first art class in 9th grade and loved it.  I took all kinds of art classes in high school and college.

3.How often do you craft?

I’m constantly creating something.  I usually have multiple projects going on at once.  I’ll have something on my knitting needles, my art easel and my sewing machine.

4.Where do you get your inspiration?

My inspiration comes from things I see in a day to day basis.  I am always looking at something to see how to make it or I come up with things because there is a need for it.

5.What is your favorite medium to work in?

My favorite medium would have to be painting.  I love to paint and get a great sense of joy when I complete a painting.

6. What is your guilty pleasure?

Ahh, my guilty pleasure would have to be anything with sugar.  I have a terrible sweet tooth.

7. What makes you smile?

I always smile when I hear my kids giggling together.

8. What is your favorite thing to do (other than crafting)?

Believe it or not it is exercising.  I really enjoy spinning, yoga, swimming and walking.

*You can see Nikki’s SYTYC projects on her bio page*

Winter – Week 8 (with results)

In addition to our great challange, we had some great giveaways last week.  The Apostrophy Designs and The Girl in the Blue Glasses giveaways are still open through today and the Jocole and Blake’s Crayons are open until Thanksgiving night.  So if you haven’t entered them yet, you’ve still got time!

And I know you’re all looking for another great blog to follow.  Briton Loves It is having a  two week Love Fest starting today!  There are great guest speakers, giveaways and holiday ideas. So you should definitely go check that out.  it’s going to be fantastic.

Last weeks crafts were so clever.  I love to see all the fun things you can make with random stuff from the hardware store.

Ko Jo Designs were the winners with their Interactive World Map.

My husband has always wanted a giant map like that for the wall of our office (you know…when we actually have an office) but he’s already  told me I have to make one for him.

We have to say goodbye to Nikki and her Child’s Art Easel this week though.

I’m really hoping that she’ll put a tutorial for it up on her blog.  That was one thing I wanted to get Abbi for Christmas.  Be sure you keep track of what she’s up to over at LilyBug Designs.

This weeks theme is very fitting, at least in my neck of the woods.  Here’s a hint…the view from my window Saturday night ( the first real snowfall of 2010).

You guessed it. Mandy, KoJo and Chica & Jo have got some awesome WINTER crafts.

#1 – Hibernation Station – KoJo Designs

Nothing pairs with a snowy day quite like a stack of good books, a cup of cocoa (heavy on the marshmallows), and a cozy blanket. And the perfect backdrop for this winter-y trifecta of goodness? This Hibernation Station, complete with a comfy spot to curl up and read, a book sling for keeping a few good reads close by, and casters to give this reading nook full mobility.

As I’m sure you can tell from the pictures, the real genius of the Hibernation Station is that it was made from a couple of palettes and almost all other materials gathered from around our house. Besides a run to the hardware store for the casters, the curtain hardware, sandpaper and nails (well, and also a trip to gather a couple of wooden palettes), all of the parts of this reading nook were made from materials we had on hand. That includes the ‘chair’ itself, the custom cushion, the book sling, and the accessories- no small feat when you consider the finished product.

The Hibernation Station is perfect for snuggling under a cozy blanket… and whiling the day away… and kicking your feet up… and relaxing… and grabbing another book… and sharing… and sipping… and just generally enjoying the goodness of winter!

#2 – Penguin Coat Rack – Chica & Jo

Winter means many wonderful things to us, with the snow and the holidays and the decorations. When it comes to everyday life around the house, though, winter means lots and lots of winter clothes! Hats and scarves and coats and mittens get tossed everywhere when removed at the door, and keeping them organized can be a hassle, especially if you have little kids. We decided to make it FUN for the kids to put their winter items away by creating an adorable little penguin to help them do their job!

Here’s what our guy looks like to start off:

And here he is all loaded up with one child’s garments:

Everything has a place and we think the penguin looks just as cute holding everything as he does on his own. If you’ve got several kids, you can make them each their own special penguin!

#3 – Snowman Glove Dryer – Mandy

Winter and snow – love it.  But what’s the most annoying thing about winter?? – all those wet hats/gloves/boots thrown about the entryway.  Well, bring on winter because this year I’m ready with the Snowman Glove Dryer!

This is a cost-friendly, FUNCTIONAL craft.  Made of inexpensive PVC pipe, there is a hole in the bottom that allows hot air to flow up and through the arms, legs, and top to quick-dry hats, gloves, and boots.

Operation is easy – simple place the Snowman Glove Dryer over a vent and let the warm air do the rest!

And not only does it dry hats/gloves/boots – it gives them a place other than scattered on the floor – perfect!

Interview with Heidi from Made by Heidi

1.Tell us a little about you and your blog.
Hi! I’m Heidi from Made by Heidi a blog about my adventures in crafting. I love blogging about cute (and not-so-cute) things that I’ve made, featuring other crafters, having giveaways, posting tutorials, and basically getting to know other crafters! What a great outlet for a stay-at-home mom!

2.How and when did you start crafting?
I grew up making things. My mother and grandmother would make our clothing, they both taught me to sew, crochet, and knit. I found out at a very early age that I love to keep my hands busy at all times. I can’t even watch TV without having all of my craft stuff surrounding me, makes for a pretty messy house sometimes… (my poor husband J).

3.How often do you craft?
I almost always have something that I am working on. I have an addiction. I just can’t help myself!

4.Where do you get your inspiration?
I’m usually inspired by the weirdest things, I will be looking a street sign and decide that I need to make a game for my child, okay… so I’m really not that cool, but my mind is usually going a hundred miles an hour when I start thinking about crafts.

5.What is your favorite medium to work in?
Fabric! I love to sew.

6.What is your guilty pleasure?
Project Runway… I‘m kind-of obsessed. I love watching the drama. I really don’t understand mean people (especially this season!), but it is oh-so-much fun to watch them on TV J

7.What makes you smile?
My children, every single day.

8.What is your favorite thing to do (other than crafting)?
Go somewhere new and fun with my kiddos. I love watching their excitement when they experience something new. Seriously LOVE my little girlies!

Hardware – Week 7 (with results)

I hope you all had a great weekend!  Guess what Saturday was?  It was the 1 year anniversery for So You Think You’re Crafty!  I can not believe that it’s already been a whole year.  We’ve meet over 50 bloggers through the 5 seasons of last year.  Are you still keeping up with them?  I hope so! They’re all doing fantastic things!

As a late blogiversery present to all of you awesome readers I’ve got 5 AMAZING giveaways coming up this week; starting tomorrow.  So be sure to come and check them out!

So Mandy was far and away the winner last week with her Leaf Rosette Wreath.

I just have share this conversation I had with her last week.

“Hey Missy! Here’s the project for next week!”
“Thanks Mandy, but I think you’ve got the theme wrong.  This week is Natural”
“Oh, right…Can I have a little extra time?”

Within a few hours I found this project in my inbox.  That’s right, she came up with and made the wreath in just a few hours.  That is some crafty talent!

Last week seemed to be full of little mishaps, but poor Heidi wasn’t as lucky as Mandy.  While working on her gorgeous Leaf Center Piece she burnt her hand, like really bad, and was unable to finish the project to the vision she had imagined (you can read about it here).

I’m so sad to see her go, but know that I can just go check out her blog, Made by Heidi, whenever I miss her, and you should too.

To see the full results from last week you can see them here.

This weeks theme was “Hardware.”  Meaning they had to use things they found in a hardware store to make the craft, and they found some great crafty stuff in with all those nails and screws.

#1 – Child’s Art Easel – Nikki

As a person who loves art, I like to give my kids every opportunity to be creative.  We spend quite a bit of time coloring, decorating, painting, and playing with play-doh.  When the hardware theme came up I thought this was the perfect time to make an art easel for my daughter.  With some basic carpentry skills you can whip up an art easel too!

With one side of the easel as a dry erase board and the other a chalk board your child will have a blast using this art easel.

You can find all of the materials at your local hardware store.  Check out the mud pan, it works perfectly for holding chalk and dry erase markers.

#2 – Aluminum Greeting Cards – Chica & Jo

This week’s hardware theme sure was a doozy! We walked around our local hardware store looking for inspiration
and found it in an aisle full of metal rods, poles, and grates. There was some lovely punched aluminum that
came in large sheets intended for use in things like radiator covers. When we saw it, though, we knew it was
destined for greeting cards.

As pretty as the metal was on its own, we knew it needed some color, so we decorated it with another hardware
store find — paint chips! The bright colors make the panels look almost like stained glass, and the cards
are really something special when you open the envelope. The color combination possibilities are endless here.
Of course we started with a couple of Christmas cards.

And then we made some that are pretty enough to use for any other occasion. If we win we’ll show you just
how we used the paint chips to create those amazing backgrounds.

#3 – Reading Nook Hanging Chair – Mandy

After wandering through the hardware store, I came out with:  chains, eyebolts, nuts, washers, painter’s dropcloth, lumber, metal bucket, bubble wrap, and colored duct tape.  All for the same project – crazy!!  But it all pulled together for my amazing Reading Nook Hanging Chair.

I LOVE the look – it’s the shiny hardware that makes the biggest statement:

The chair doesn’t hang too high off the ground, so it’s easily accessible to young children.  I mounted it in the corner so it won’t swing back and forth too much.  The chair is a relatively easy construction project that anyone can conquer (really!  just a few cuts – I was proud that I worked the chop-saw by myself – and then a few screws to hold it together).  I will provide you all the measurements for mine so you don’t have to think, but you can also adjust my measurements to fit your own needs.

And I just had to share this cute picture of the Reading Nook Hanging Chair in action as my little guy was winding down for bedtime last night…

#4 – Interactive World Map – KoJo Designs

We’re DIY folk (we do a lot of remodeling), rendering hardware stores Less-Than-Desirable locations to spend an hour or two (in my opinion, at least). However, if you take some time to meander a bit, they are also a treasure trove of fabulous crafting supplies! Upholstery tacks get me every time with their variety and vintage vibe, I feel like drop cloths should get a prize for their versatility (have you seen all of the projects using them? Brilliant!), and I could stare at paint samples for hours. And you’ll never (ever!) guess what my ‘secret ingredient’ for this project was. It was used in the place of cork board (which you can also find at a hardware store, but this gem of a find was much cheaper!) and worked like a charm!

And the best part of my hardware store meandering? Taking a mix of hardware store staples (a drop cloth, upholstery tacks, paint samples and my super fabulous secret ingredient) and making something fabulous for our family- a part home decor, part teaching tool, part interactive experience, part conversation starter world map!

What home wouldn’t benefit from this fantastic twist on a traditional world map? Add some mod colors and a box-y grid for looks and drawing the interest of small children and watch the teachable moments materialize. Throw in a key with directions and a box of three different kinds of upholstery tacks so that guests can mark their Places to Go, Places They’ve Been and People They Know; hours of fun and conversation await. And since very little actual artistic skill was involved in the creation of this little treasure, even non-crafty types could take on this project. An impressive piece of ‘art’ for your home requiring very little artistic skill and made from inexpensive materials from the hardware store? As Michael Scott would say- it’s a Win-Win-Win.

Interview with Kailyn @ Kailyn’s Bit of Sunshine

1.Tell us a little about you and your blog.

I am a wife, a mother of to grown daughters and a grandma of two precious kiddos. I am a newbie to the blog world. I am still learning. And, with the help of my daughter Briton, I am blogging. Yeah. My blog is mostly about what I love to do. Thanks to a very supportive hubby, I get to do what I love often. I love to be creative. I love taking what’s in my head and making it a reality. It gives me goose bumps.

2.How and when did you start crafting?

I have been crafting for over 40 years. I credit my mom with getting me started. She was my inspiration and supported me in everything I attempted. My first crafting memories are of her and I cutting up the JCPenney catalog and creating pretend houses full of furniture we cut out and people that became our family. This began my love affair with paper dolls. I also have my grandparents to thank. My grandmother for teaching me embroidery and my grandfather who made sterling silver rings and shared his love of creating with me.

3. How often do you craft?

I craft every single day. Anywhere from a hour to 12 hours a day. Depending on the project and my excitement to do it.

4.Where do you get your inspiration?

Everywhere. My head is constantly thinking and absorbing everything around me. I love color and construction. I can look at anything and figure out how to make it. I seldom use patterns and if I do need one, I usually make it myself.

5.What is your favorite medium to work in?

This is a tricky question for me. I change mediums like I change my shoes. I have worked with and become proficient with Polymer clay sculpting, Precious metal clay, Jewelry making, Glass bead making, Fused glass pendants, Resin beads and resin work, Sewing, Embroidery, Silk ribbon work, Felt work, Painting, and every and anything else I can think of. I have two kilns and want to learn to hand build ceramics.

6.What is your guilty pleasure?

Buying craft books and craft supplies. With every new medium I need the tools and everything that goes with it.

7.What makes you smile?

My family!!!! crafting and pizza.:)

8.What is your favorite thing to do (other than crafting)?

Talking and playing with my grandbabies. Since they are far away and I don’t get to see them very often. The next thing would be cooking and baking. I love to make things from scratch.

*You can find out more about Kailyn and see her SYTYC projects on her bio page.*