Book: Blog tour: Vintage Craft Workshop

by kath_red on 16/05/2011

in Books

Cathy Callahan, founder of the popular blog Cathy of California, brings a fresh look to crafts from the ’60s and ’70s in her new book Vintage Craft Workshop.

Vintage Craft Workshop: Fresh Takes on Twenty-Four Classic Projects from the ’60s and ’70s By Cathy Callahan, published by Chronicle Books (May 4, 2011).

1. Hi Cathy – welcome to Whipup! I am a big fan of your blog and love vintage craft books myself – my mum has a ton of them which I raid every so often. Can you tell me your 3 favourite vintage craft books and give a brief description of how each one has influenced you?

You are very welcome Kathreen! So cool that your mom has vintage craft books that you can take a peek at!

So hard to narrow it down to 3 favorites! But here goes:

1. Make it with…Yarn ‘n Burlap
This was the first vintage craft book I bought. It’s how I discovered just how influenced I was by 60s – 70s crafts.

2. Swistraw and Flower Looms
I love the cover – when I first laid my eyes on it the earth stood still for a split second. Needless to say it’s had a profound effect on me.

3. Better Homes and Gardens Stitchery and Crafts
I tell everybody if they can only have one vintage craft book it has to be this one. It covers a gamut of projects and is a good go to book to get an overview of the feeling of 60s-70s crafts. Super easy to find on Ebay and Amazon.

2. I love how you have profiled various craft entrepreneur women from the period throughout the book – who would you say are your top 3 crafty women influences?

I think I have to say that my mom is probably my main influence but otherwise here’s my top 3 (so hard to choose).

1. Gemma Taccogna – so talented and left such amazing body of work.

2. Aleene Jackson – inventor Tacky Glue – she has a great story.

3. Enid Collins – almost every crafter I know is influenced by her and collect her handbags.

3. So many great projects in this book – I find myself attracted mostly to the yarn and stitch projects – so much colour and texture – what do you think epitomises crafts from this period – is it the colour, the materials or the techniques – and what is your favourite technique and material to work with?

I have to say it’s the use of color that epitomises the 60s-70s. People were not afraid to use color and to combine it in unexpected ways.

Second to that – texture was really considered – think burlap and the use of heavy yarns. A lot of crafts in the 60s-70s were revivals of ancient techniques like macrame and decoupage. People looked at traditions that had died out and found ways to bring them back in an updated manner. This concept is not unlike how we approached the projects in my book – my contributors and myself looked at the crafts of the 60s and 70s and came up with a more contemporary twist.

Burlap is my favorite material and Papier Mache is my favorite technique.

Follow along on the blog tour:

Monday, May 9 – CRAFT
Tuesday, May 10 – Retro Renovation
Wednesday, May 11 – Easy Crafts Wiki
Thursday, May 12 – Exit Through The Thrift Shop
Friday, May, 13 – West Coast Crafty
Monday, May 16 – Whip Up
Tuesday, May 17 – Coquette
Wednesday, May 18 – CraftyPod
Thursday, May 19 – This Is Love Forever
Friday, May 20 – Mod Podge Rocks


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