3 tips for better tutorial writing on your craft blog

by kath_red on 23/04/2009

in Blogging Tips


Starting a craft blog can be a fun but also daunting prospect. If you are a blog lurker and eager to start your own blog but not quite sure what to write or if you already have a craft blog and would like to build your audience and participate more fully in the craft blog community – then tune in over the coming weeks for tips and ideas on how to build a better craft blog.

Writing tutorials on your craft blog is one really good way to gain new readers to your blog. Sharing your knowledge and skills is not only generous, but it shows that you are an active participant in this big craft blog community. Readers appreciate your generosity and you will gain a new and ever more loyal audience.

Good writing and illustrations are important – not only must readers be able to follow and understand but your photos and/or illustrations need to be clear and attractive too. [bella dia has a good post on how to write a tutorial here and I always think that the purl bee has very clear and attractive tutorials too, oh fransson’s quilt along was an excellent example of good tutorials with clear and easy to follow instructions]

1. Clear and concise: This is where your writing needs to be pared back – and instructive rather than essay like. Use clear headings and lists to get across your points.

  • Start with a simple introduction – what is the point of this project – where/when/who will use it – how difficult is it? And what level of skill is needed in order to complete the project.
  • Next a photo of the finished project – perhaps an image of it in action – make this photo really luscious – this is what will draw in the readers make them really want to make this project.
  • List of supplies and materials – if there are any tricky or unusual materials make sure you explain them – give alternatives. Give exact measurements if you can – how much of each material will be needed. If you have some resources for these materials/supplies then let your audience know.
  • Do you need a pattern – feel free to provide illustrations via a pdf or image that can be either downloaded or printed at the correct size.
  • 2. Break the instructions into bite sized chunks: If you need to break the tutorial up into sections in order to make it clearer and not too long and unwieldy then do that rather than having one very long post.

    If this is a very long project or has many parts to it – then you might want to turn it into a series. Make sure you break it into logical sections in a way that you would actually make the project.

    3. Good photos or illustrations: This is really important to a good tutorial – the images must be clear and understandable. Don’t even bother with dark or blurry photos. Get rid of any background stuff that is not relevant to your tutorial. Use a plain background that will not distract from your topic. Take photos of each step in the process – or at least the main steps that are difficult to explain in words. [see this post of taking better photos for your craft blog].

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    { 4 comments… read them below or add one }

    1 Angela April 24, 2009 at 12:34 pm

    Hey thanks for this! This is excellent advice and I’m bookmarking it for the next time I’m writing a tutorial.


    2 Cassi April 29, 2009 at 9:27 pm

    Thanks for linking to my tutorial!!


    3 Jennifer Perkins May 2, 2009 at 9:41 am

    Thanks these posts are really informative and helpful. I have been following the whole series. I recently asked people to leave me a comment on my blog letting me know what they look for in a how-to article and got some really interesting and some surprising answers.


    4 kath_red May 3, 2009 at 12:10 am

    Thank you Jennifer for letting me know that you have been enjoying this series. I have certainly been enjoying writing it and sharing my self-taught blogging know-how.


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