1. As editor to the Crafternoon series (great name by the way), can you give us an overview of the Papercraft and Sewing books? ie What type of projects are included, age level and degree of difficulty etc?
The Papercraft book has a whole bunch of projects for the cut, fold, glue crowd who love to work with paper. There is such a broad range of projects - but because they are aimed at a specific age group they all have something in common. They use only materials that can be easily sourced and the techniques that are used are simple and basic to get a handle on, all of this means that most kids can get crafting without too much effort. A bit of a raid of the craft box and the utility drawer should get most kids on their way. The paper aeroplanes project is a perfect example - who doesn't love to make one of these - and with 3 different designs to choose from - it makes for a fun afternoon with friends. Another really simple projects is the Articulated puppets, these make use of paint colour sample cards - so addictive to collect - and now you have a reason to visit the paint isle at the hardware store. The paper mache owls I think are really genius - because really they are so simple, yet look impressive, just some glue, scissors and paper and you can make these all afternoon
The other main thing about this and the sewing book is that most of the projects are suitable for both boys and girls, with just a little tweaking of colour they can be adjusted to suit anyone. There a few projects aimed at more experienced crafters - teenagers and adults too, but of course with a little help the littlies can make these projects too. I think the Owl cards are very clever - they have a couple of layers of difficulty designed into them - so that beginner crafters can make a basic version and those with more patience and skills can take them to the next level.
The Sewing book is a little different as it focuses on a technique rather than a material. But lucky for the beginner sewers out there of all ages, that the projects don't require anything more difficult than straight sewing on the sewing machine, and perhaps a button or two! I also love how accessible these projects are for a range of ages, with many of the projects making use of recycled materials, making these things is not going to mean a trip to an expensive craft store - you are likely to have most of what you need right at home already. For example the Sassy sock softie is made from a lonesome sock and only requires hand stitching, and the Pocket cushion is made from a pair of jeans and makes use of the pocket that is already there! - so clever. I love the illustrated softy badges, these are just a simple square sewn up and stuffed, then painted and sewn to decorate - they can be as simple or as fancy as you like. And the embroidered keyring I think is really quite cool - it uses faux vinyl offcuts from the hardware with the design stitched on them. A great project to boys sewing too
2. The designs in the books are fabulous! What did you look for when choosing your designers?
I was looking for a range of ideas, designers and makers whose work spoke to me and to my kids was very important. Many of the designers were already making things for kids or with kids or inspired by kids work while others made childlike or fun things for adults but I knew their designs could easily be adjusted and simplified. When it came down to finalising the list - we did have to take into account what projects we had and what gaps needed filling so there were some designs that I would have loved to have seen in the book which just didn't make it in
3. You run a very successful craft blog Whip-up. In your opinion, what makes it so successful?
Thanks Cate. Whipup is about 6 years old now and has evolved over the years - but what remains constant is my passion for craft and I think that is what comes through and what readers keep coming back for over and over again. And over the years I have built up relationships with other crafters and bloggers - I think that is important too - to keep it fresh and interesting but to remain true to yourself. Also I think its really important to always be nice - I try to always answer emails - if only briefly at times, and I also try to give only positive feedback - because I know how much work, love and effort goes into making things and really shooting someone down in flames is just not good karma!
4. Anything that you want to share about your future plans?
My future plans include more books, more Action Packs and a big trip with my family - we plan on taking a gap year and going travelling!
Go Make Me is the last stop on the blog tour. Check out the other blogs that participated too (there may be a chance to still win a copy of the books especially if you live outside of Australia)