I am excited to bring on this year, not that I want to rush into it, no, I just am glad it’s here.
This coming year for me is going to bring a few new challenges, projects and preparation — more on those aspects later in the year, but for now I want to tell you about a few things that I have been into lately, things that reenergise me and that inspire me and that you too can participate in.
I am now on Instagram @whipup - huh! how did that happen – I know … another thing to get addicted to. But there you have it … it’s fun — what can I say!
[you can view my images in a few ways: followgram or webstagram or at instagram] [ps. That crochet there is the beginnings of a Scrappy steps afghan (it's Chawnes fault), you can grab the pattern here and watch the how-to videos here.]
Do you twitter? I do and you can follow me here: Twitter @whipup : but I what I want to talk about are the chat groups on twitter – the crafty chat groups on all sorts of topics, they are helpful, fun and energising. There is one in particular that is at a convenient time for me and on a topic that I am immersed in at the moment #talknt is all about quilt talk, it is hosted by @caraquilts and is on somewhere between tuesday night (US time) and wednesday midday (Au time) depending upon your time zone. There is a sponsor each week which is always fun, but more importantly about 50 other quilting enthusiasts join in.
There are many crafty twitter chats and parties … which ones do you host or participate in – I would love to know! Do you know of any yarn/knitting/crochet twitter chats? Here are the few that I know about:
- #talknt is a weekly quilting chat hosted by @caraquilts
- #CraftSocial is a monthly chat with a changing topic each time, it is co-hosted by @penguintrax and @sisterdiane. The next one is February 14th from 2-3pm EST and the topic is polymer clay.
- #crafterminds is a twice weekly craft/business chat (Monday at 4pm EST and 8pm EST) hosted by one Crafterminds.
- #CraftChat is hosted by Craft Critique and is held every Wednesday at 1pm CST. A list of topics for the month is posted on the blog.
- #omhg is hosted by @ohmyhandmade. They meet every Thursday from 1-2EST to chat about a monthly theme usually to do with building your business or improving your skills.
What is a twitter chat? A tweet chat or party is an organized group conversation which discusses a specific topic, it makes use of a hashtag (#) so everyone can participate. The chats are hosted by people with an interest in a topic and often pose questions to the group to build up a dialogue.
How to join in on a twitter chat: I use either my iphone or TweetDeck or TweetChat and then just search for the hashtag that the chat is using to keep track of and join in to the conversation – it is pretty easy but does take a bit to get used to the speed that conversation goes at sometimes.
This Week I introduced a new series coming up over the next month here on whipup — and it is about my book Little Bits Quilting Bee and pre-cut fabric: I’ll be discussing which fabrics you can use to make the quilts in my book and will be showcasing a few of the quilts. I was inspired by Weeks Ringle who has been showing the quilts from her latest book on her blog and discussing the design decisions behind each one.
In last weeks newsletter I introduced you to some dinner ideas – this week I am going introduce you to chocolate sheet cake: — inspired by this but using this recipe – chewy and fudgy at the same time – an instant winner!
I am reading…
- The big book of small business is written by a fellow Australian Andrew Griffiths (published by Allen and Unwin) — it claims to be the ‘Silver bullet to give you a competitive edge’, I am not sure there is such a thing — hard work, dedication, building relationships, creativity — those are the silver bullets. However it does have thoughtful, practical and useful guidance – a checklist for success, and it does help you to ask yourself some hard questions. I am gladdened to read that I am on the right path … it is good to know when to stand firm and when to make changes … some valuable advice.
- Graham Leslie McCallum has a useful series of books featuring various motifs: Flower & Plant Motifs, Pattern Motifs, Art Deco Motifs and Japanese Motifs. These books include a CD of motifs and which can be manipulated and adapted for your own projects.
- Sweat Shop Paris: Lessons in Couture from the Sewing Cafe by Martena Duss and Sissi Holleis (published by Andrews McMeel Publishing 2011). This indie style sewing book is written by the gang from the Paris based social sewing shop: ‘Sweat Shop’, it’s a cafe — a social sewing drop-in centre. The designs featured in the book are unusual and unique, hippy and punk and rock n roll diy — utilising refashioning and deconstruction, knitting and crossstitch, beading, glueing and stitching techniques to make a variety of hip and fashionable clothing and accessories as well as a bunch of playful things too.
[Thanks to publishers and distributors for sending me books to review, I don't get paid to post reviews but I am an amazon affiliate] (Australian’s can purchase craft books online through can do books or booktopia or else browse booko for the best prices.)