Life is insane (!!) when school is in session. My friend Alexis agreed to guest post in light of my hectic schedule. She’s awesome and I hope you enjoy what she has to say! Thanks, Alexis!
When my Lady of Public Knitting here asked me to do a guest post for her, I was thrilled. I’d never really been asked to do one before, so I felt overwhelmingly honoured for not only having one of my favorite Bloggers/Tweeters ask me but to even be asked at all. She then told me I could write about whatever I wanted, especially if it fell in the realm of what happens at the end of the universe or knitting & crafts. So then I’m all like, “Sweet! Guest-posting for someone rad & it’s about whatever I want.”
Then I had some trouble finding the time to sit down & write & sort of freaked out a little. I mean, trying to learn how to balance a job, significant other, attention-whore Corgi, & your own start-up business is tough, y’all.
But never fear! I have a cold beer next to me (read: drinking frosted gluten-y treat that I’m not really supposed to have because of the gluten thing) & I am here to deliver the best guest post you have ever read (that I have written).
As I mentioned in the above paragraph where I was freaking out about getting this to my friend on time, I’m trying to learn how to be a professional crafter/artist/person who sells their own creative junk & blogs about things. I have tried to do this once before & didn’t really do the best “planning” or “research” or “whatever you want to call starting a business properly,” so it was a bit of a flop. This time around I sat down & did some of those things & set a launch date.
A launch date which I am pushing back now because I ran into some crazy issues & other stuff you don’t want to hear about. But the point being, I’d rather take some more time & do it right the second go-round instead of rushing to get it done & having it way more less than perfect than I am willing to live with.
Wow, I sure know how to ramble.
What I really wanted to talk about was sustainability, upcycling, & being kind to Ms. Nature (or is she a Mrs.? We’ll probably never know) within the world of crafting & creating.
Being someone that cares about the environment & an artist don’t have to be mutually exclusive. It also doesn’t mean that you have to weave your own hemp fibers to use for garments or make paint from berries. All it means is taking some time to look at things a little differently, often times not seeing them for what they are but what they could be. The easiest way to do that is to obtain your materials from things that normal people (gah, “normal people,” who wants to be one of those?) would pass over or discard. I love Home Depot, & whenever I’m there I check out the discount bin in the paint section. They make these little jars of sample colours that people take home & try on their walls, but just like the big gallons, sometimes they don’t take them & so they go in the sale bin for 50 cents. 50 cents, people. I grab those up & use them on my canvases. If you sew or craft, check out a local free-cycle site for your community. They are little online communities where people can post stuff they have or stuff they need. Free stuff. You’d be amazed at how many people are putting fabric or notions up for grabs. Then there are estate sales, you actually have to pay for that stuff but you’ll be going nuts over the vintage fabrics you could find.
One of the greatest things about being a creative personality is that you already see things differently. You already have that spirit in you that wants to make beautiful treasures that people can fall in love with. You hear music that’s not playing & see colours that aren’t there. It’s a gorgeous kind of crazy. I can’t think of a more satisfying way of expressing yourself & your craft than by looking at something tossed aside & saying “You know what? That thing is amazing & I’m going to show the world.” Even if you prefer starting from scratch, you can pick through the remnant bin first or source your materials from sources those normal weirdos wouldn’t think of. Plus, the normal weirdos will marvel at your coolness, originality & oh-so-trendy greenness, along with wanting to have their own one of a kind creations to show off.
When my shop opens in about two months, I hope to inspire & show off the cool things you can do with old stuff when you have some imagination & passion for making old things new again. I promise there are no dresses made from cereal boxes stolen from people’s recycling bins or chandeliers made from beer bottles..
Wait, I totally want to make a chandelier from beer bottles. I don’t know if I can give that one up though, that’s going in my house forever. Or, you can pay me for the beer bottle chandelier, but the one made from wine bottles stays with me. Mmm…wine.
Where was I?
Oh yeah, no cereal box dresses. Dresses made from old men’s shirts or from other dresses, definitely (& they are so pretty, I wish I had pictures for sneak peeks right now but sadly they are not even with me to take pictures of at the moment). Shopping bags made from thrifted tees & cute things made from great vintage fabric finds. I even have adorable keepsake boxes that were once plain & ordinary until I attacked them, covering them with old Atlas pages & illustrations.
Enough about my stuff, you’ll see it soon enough. What are some fun ways you incorporate green-living into your craftiness? New ideas are fun to steal…I mean, copy…I mean, learn from?