Tag Archive: Online Culture of Craft

It’s Time for Quilts, Inc. to Change the Name of the Husband’s Lounge

Photo of the 2017 Husband’s Lounge at International Quilt Festival courtesy of Kristin LaFlamme. I want to express my disappointment in Quilts, Inc.’s decision to continue to call the lounge area at International Quilt Festival the “husband’s lounge.” Last November I wrote a post here about why the language we use when we talk about… 

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From Professional Baseball to Publishing a Quilting Magazine: The Unlikely Story of Quiltfolk

Quiltfolk is a new quarterly magazine for quilters. Each issue focuses on quilters in a particular part of the United States and includes over a dozen human-interest stories accompanied by luscious photography. The pages are off-set print on high quality paper with no ads. It’s a beautiful publication and an inspiring read for anyone interested… 

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5 Crafty Facebook Live Shows to Watch

When Facebook introduced the ability to livestream in March of 2016 it was hard to predict how crafters would make use of it. The opportunity to engage with fans in real time opened up a whole world of creative potential. Demonstrate techniques, go behind-the-scenes at trade shows and conferences, conduct live interviews – the options… 

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Shruti Dandekar Quilts a Bridge Between India and the US

Shruti Dandekar with her Bernina. The first time Shruti Dandekar touched as sewing machine she was aching. It was October of 2009 and she’d contracted chikungunya, a mosquito born illness that’s not uncommon where she lives in the southern part of Maharashtra, India. “I wasn’t well,” she recalls. “It causes a lot of joint pain… 

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Ode to the iPhone on Its 10th Anniversary

Today is the 10th anniversary of the release of the first iPhone. I didn’t get an iPhone when it came out back in 2007. In fact I used to really hate cell phones. I was hesitant to get a phone at all, and when I finally got a flip phone I often left it at… 

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A Cartoon for Quilters: The Story of Mrs. Bobbins

Julia Icenogle in her home studio. One afternoon in 2008, while mingling at the opening reception of an art show where her work was displayed, illustrator Julia Icenogle was approached by the editors of the Kansas City Star. The newspaper was looking to create a blog and they’d decided a web comic would keep readers… 

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A Perspective on Tula Pink’s ‘Spirit Animal’ and Cultural Appropriation

The focal print from Spirit Animal, Tula Pink’s new line from Free Spirit. The print has been pulled. On April 4 popular fabric designer, Tula Pink, announced on her Facebook page that she was asking FreeSpirit to pull the focal print from her newest collection, Spirit Animal. She had, it seemed, been accused of cultural… 

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Should God Be a Marketing Tool? A Look at Accuquilt’s “So God Made a Farmer” Video

I saw this video on Accuquilt’s Facebook page last week. It was originally released in January of 2016, but the company is featuring it again in a current marketing campaign. Accuquilt manufactures and sells die cutting tools for quilters. You may recognize the concept from the “So God Made a Farmer” commercial for Ram trucks… 

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Two Yarn Shops Go Viral In Wake of Political Change

What is it about a post that makes people want to share? That’s a question I thought a lot about last week as I watched two yarn shops go viral. On Tuesday, January 24, four days after the Women’s March, Elizabeth Poe, owner of The Joy of Knitting in Franklin, Tennessee, posted the following message… 

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Slow Growth and the Internet Gold Rush

Almost a year ago I spoke at Midwest Craft Con and from the stage I asked by a show of hands how many of the 200 or so people in the audience had a day job in addition to their craft business. From where I stood  it looked like nearly every hand in the room… 

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Language Matters: Making Quilting More Inclusive

Language is important. The words we use to describe ourselves end up defining us. Last week I saw these photos taken at International Quilt Festival in Houston. Photos courtesy Bill Volckening. I was struck by the function of the word “husband” to describe the lounge and reached out to Bob Ruggiero, Director of Publications &… 

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Go Tell It at the Quilt Show Records the Oral Histories of Quilts

Karen Duling and her quilt ‘Catnado’ at QuiltCon 2016. Founded in 1993, the Quilt Alliance is dedicated to documenting, preserving, and sharing quilts and quilt stories. The Asheville, North Carolina non-profit has one full time Executive Director, Amy Milne, and a few part time staff members including Emma Parker, 27, who serves as the Oral… 

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How Instagram Stories Will Redefine the Platform

Yesterday Instagram launched a new feature that adds significant functionality to the platform: Stories. Stories allow users to post images and videos that disappear after 24 hours. Recording a Story is quick and easy, or you can upload images from your camera roll. Like a Snapchat Story, you can add text, handwriting, drawings, and filters…. 

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Facing Shrinking Ad Dollars Craft Magazines Are Rethinking Everything

Last week’s announcement that one of the longest running quilting magazines, Quilters Newsletter, will be shutting down in October hit the quilting world hard. Hundreds of comments poured in on blogs and Facebook from longtime QNM readers expressing sadness that this beloved publication that has been in print for 47 years was to be no… 

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Quilters Newsletter Shuttered Amidst Cutbacks at F+W

In an email sent on Thursday, July 14 to contributors, Editorial Director Bill Gardner delivered some difficult news about the fate of the magazine Quilters Newsletter. “Quilters Newsletter has held a very special place in the hearts of quilting enthusiasts for 47 years, and has been a source of inspiration and learning for quilters around… 

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On Learning New Software

On the left, me and Roxanne a few months before I started this blog. On the right, Roxanne sewing in my studio last week. In the late winter of 2005 I spent eight hours learning how to use blogging software. Those were eight precious hours. They were spread out over two weeks and amounted to… 

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Sewing and Creative Business News of Interest this Week

Always lots going on in the sewing and creative business world. Here are my picks of interesting news and happenings going on right now. Etsy is hosting a creative business conference August 11-12 in New York City. Called Etsy Up, the focus of the event is “empowering Etsy sellers and facilitating connections.” It sounds like… 

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Who Killed Quilt Your Heart Out?

*Updated May 23: Mary has asked me to remove the details of her non-compete and her mother’s non-compete due to her extreme fear that F+W will take legal action against them. Fans of quilting personalities Marianne and Mary Fons were thrilled in February of this year when the mother daughter duo launched their own podcast…. 

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Is Quilt Market Still Relevant When We See It All On Instagram?

“Market use to be a place to debut your new products to shop owners and pretty much only to shop owners and others in the trade,” says Linda Sullivan, owner of Linderella Quiltworks, an independent quilt shop in Southern Pines, North Carolina. “Excitement would build and then on the first day of Market a frenzy… 

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Craftsy Launches In-House Fabric Line, Boundless Fabrics – Seeks Designers for Exclusive Kits

Craftsy has launched an in-house fabric line and is now seeking designers to create digital quilt patterns for exclusive kits. Called Boundless Fabrics, the line launched with a collection of solids sold as yardage and pre-cuts in the supplies section on Craftsy.com. In September of 2015 word spread that Craftsy was launching its own yarn… 

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Report from Midwest Craftcon

I’m writing this on the plane on the way home from the inaugural Midwest Craftcon in Columbus, Ohio. I flew from Boston to Columbus on Friday and Grace Dobush, one of the three event organizers, picked me up from the airport. It was terrific to meet Grace. Last February we spoke on the phone when… 

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Quilts, Inc. Raises Rates for Quilt Festival Teachers for the First Time In At Least 17 Years

Quilts, Inc. informed its current faculty today that it will raise teacher pay rates by 33%, the first pay raise for teachers at International Quilt Festival (IQF) since at least 1998. A letter sent to teachers this morning from Judy Murrah, Vice President of Education and Administration at Quilts, Inc., stated: And if, as they… 

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Confessions of an Online Mom: Why Being Plugged In Works For Me

Me in March of 2005 nursing Roxanne. Our oldest daughter, Roxanne, was small at birth. I had pre-eclampsia and was induced at 37 weeks 5 days. Even though the pregnancy was full-term she was only 4 lbs 9 ounces – what they call small for gestational age or small for dates. I remember the first… 

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A New World of Cut and Sew With Sprout Patterns

The print-on-demand fabric company, Spoonflower, launched a new division last month called Sprout Patterns. Sprout allows customers to select a fabric design from the Spoonflower marketplace and have it printed as templates for a sewing pattern. Sprout users avoid the tedium of tracing pattern pieces and get right to the fun of cutting and sewing… 

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Reflections on My First Trip to Quilt Market

I went to Quilt Market! If you’re part of the home sewing or quilting industry, even tangentially, you know that Quilt Market is the twice a year industry trade show. Quilt Market isn’t open to the public and I think for a long time it was rather mysterious, but today people who attend the show… 

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Craftsy Responds: An Open Letter from CEO John Levisay

Yesterday afternoon I got an email from John Levisay, the CEO of Craftsy. He was positive and upbeat. He’s read the post and all of your comments and he’s written an open letter to us. I admire a company that listens and is willing to engage openly in conversation. Here’s John: Recently, there have been… 

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Craftsy Potentially to Launch Fabric and Yarn Lines

On June 17 Craftsy’s parent company, Sympoz, Inc., registered two new trademarks that appear to be for their own fabric and yarn lines. The fabric line will be called Boundless Fabrics and the yarn line will be Cloudborn Fibers. Sympoz, Inc. created Craftsy as an online teaching platform in 2010 and has raised $106 million… 

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What is The Sewing Party?

In sewing news this week, The Sewing Party has relaunched. You might remember last November when The Sewing Party was a daylong online craft conference. 30 teachers conducted online workshops and the event was sponsored by Etsy, BurdaStyle, Joann Fabric, Pellon, Coats, McCalls, Simplicity, Singer, Husqvarna Viking and Pfaff. The Sewing Party is owned by… 

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Proud to Be an Etsy Seller

It’s really easy to criticize Etsy. Although I acknowledge that the platform is far from perfect, I remain loyal and I’ve recently been reminded why. In December of 2014 those of us who sell digital products were in a state of crisis over the European Union’s new tax regulations. Although Etsy was unresponsive to our… 

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What Happens When Someone Makes a Tutorial for Your Signature Product: A Case Study of Shower Art

A while ago I found this amazing store on etsy that makes these fun and funky pieces of shower art out of resin, glitter, and suction cups. My roommate and I bought several of their pieces, but as any DIY-er, I wanted to try making them myself! I love working with resin and glitter and… 

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