Staff Editor Arwen O’Reilly will be looking closely at crafters and their work from the recent Etsy + CRAFT Contest. From project tips and explanations to crafting inspiration, these crafters are doing things with new twists. Here’s the first interview in her series, “A Closer Look”.
Craft Project Tote
I was totally charmed by hdwu’s great Craft tote entry for the Etsy Craft contest. Its deceptively simple design holds a remarkable amount of stuff. It may look like a simple white tote, but the lining is a lovely floral pattern, and a small carryall hangs from a button inside. There are pockets for knitting needles, and pattern books, and an accessories bag that zippers your pens and thread and scissors in safely. Everything I would want in a tote is already there, which makes it the perfect accompaniment to any crafting. Would it be too much to say that we like to think of Craft as being a bit like this bag?
Make sure to check out hdwu’s shop on Etsy!
Arwen: How did you first get involved in crafting?
hdwu: I’ve been making stuff ever since I was really little. My parents weren’t interested in computerized or mechanical toys, and instead we had a huge box of dress-up clothes, tons of Legos, a great treehouse, a box of dolls and trucks…But most importantly, we had full access to my Mom’s wide array of crafting supplies. When we complained of boredom to my Mom, her reply was always a suggestion of cleaning the basement or the garage. We quickly learned to come up with SOMETHING else to do, which usually involved random objects from either of those places, combined into some wacky game. And we were always making stuff to enhance whatever goofy activity we dreamed up.
Arwen: What’s one simple tip you use in your crafting?
hdwu: Learn the rules and tried-and-true techniques and then break them. Challenge the way you’re ‘supposed’ to do it and push it a little farther.
Arwen: And what inspires you?
hdwu: Ultimately, I would say it’s math and color. I LOVE geometry and simple algebra. Combine playing with shapes and finding unknowns with color combinations and ideas start coming out of nowhere. I see patterns, shapes and colors just about everywhere that get my mind going.
Arwen: What are your favorite Craft-related books/websites/magazines?
hdwu: ANY of them. I love to look at everything; I make frequent use of my library card. My local library has a great city-wide sharing system, as well as an automatic monthly email for new books in the categories I’ve listed as my interests. I place a hold on almost every new crafting & home decorating book that comes out and eagerly go pick it up when it comes in. Seeing what others have created gets the juices going and I get all fired up to create something of my own.
Arwen: So what’s your next project?
hdwu: I’m attempting to design a pattern for the perfect lunch bag.