Craft Corps – Book Review and Contest


Today is full of free book prizes. Right here on my blog you can win a copy of Vickie Howell’s new book Craft Corps. If you scoot over to Vickie’s blog you can enter to win a copy of my book The Naughty Secretary Club: The Working Girls Guide to Handmade Jewelry and a Totally Texas Necklace. Two for one special!

Let’s chat about your possible prize, Craft Corps: Celebrating the Creative Community One Story at a Time. This is not your typical craft book, there is not a how-to project in sight. Instead there are interviews, lot’s of juicy interviews. Vickie had one on one conversations with creatives of all genres and types from knitters to ceramists. There are zillions of well known crafters profiled in the book. Names like Carol Duvall, Denyse Schmidt and Amy Butler probably ring a few bells. Not just the famous crafty types are profiled. If you have been following Craft Corps online you have been introduced to several up-and-coming crafters. Many more of these crafters tell their stories in the book. All the interviews are interesting and enlightening, however in keeping with our Earth Day theme this week we are going to spot light a few of my faves who typically work with recycled materials. It is only fitting since author Vickie Howell is a notorious green crafter herself!


One of the longest interviews in the book is with me. Vickie and I had a good long chat one morning on my couch all about macaroni wreaths, my fear of public speaking and Flavor Flav of all things. One of my all time favorite necklaces made from a recycled kitty puzzle is featured. The nice thing about the book is that each interview is slightly different and tailored to the specific crafter. This is the kind of book you keep next to your bed to read an interview a night and have inspired crafty dreams by.


One of the most environmentally friendly crafters I know, Travis Nichols is profiled in Craft Corps. You might remember I interviewed Travis last year when he released his endlessly entertaining book Punk Rock Etiquette. Besides being eco-friendly another adjective to describe Travis would be male, not something you see too often in the crafting world. Somehow Vickie manages to find several crafty dudes to profile. Travis who always tries to work with eco-friendly materials right down to the plastic wrap around his illustrated gift cards has an interesting conversation about the origins of the stuff we buy whether it be food or magazines. Thanks for the shout out Travis, I miss you around here.


Susan Beal one of my favorite crafty ladies is profiled in Craft Corps. A quick flip through her books Bead Simple and Button It Up and it’s clear that she has a love of reusing vintage materials in new creative ways. When Vickie asks her about a moment from her childhood connected to crafts that stands out she tells a story of using old fabric scraps with her grandmother to sew doll clothes. Apparently even her grandma, maybe inadvertently was green. As a new mother myself trying to find time to be creative and chase a toddler I especially related to their dialogue on the topic.


Just glancing at the pictures from Jenny Ryan’s interview and you can tell this lady is a creative mastermind at reworking found and vintage items in a new and exciting way. Fabric bracelets made from old sheets and fabric scraps and sweaters trimmed in vintage embroidered linens exemplify up-cycling at it’s finest. Jenny and Vickie discuss everything from Jenny’s successful LA based craft show Felt Club to the pre-Etsy days of running an online craft store.


Other enviro favorites include Kathy Cano Murillo of Crafty Chica, Mark Montano and his Big Ass Books of Crafts and Wendy Russell from She’s Crafty. All of these people put an expert spin on reworking once discarded items into something fresh and new.

Whether you are a fan of some of these crafters, thinking of starting your own craft business or just curious what got other crafters started down their specific path Craft Corps is a page turner. Lots of pictures, James Lipton style questions and of course great conversations between crafters. Some are long, others are paragraph blurbs but all are interesting and entertaining.

So now about that free book. You have one week to leave me a comment letting me know the crafter you would most like to read an interview with. Ya never know they might be one of the 30+ crafters profiled in Craft Corps.

29 Responses to “Craft Corps – Book Review and Contest”

  1. Baby.Got.Craft

    I think I would love to read YOUR interview. I have been a silent follower of your blog for a while…and always find your posts to be very fun!

    Reply
  2. Bonafyde

    There are so many crafters/artists that I admire and would love to read more about. Elsie Flannigan, Vicki Powell, (Yourself);) , Princess Lazertron, Amy Butler, Heather Bailey, Kelly Rae Roberts, etc…

    This book looks awesome!

    Reply
  3. Kerry

    I'd love to hear about the time before you were a craft queen. Where you a crafty child? Were you stuck in a less than fun career/job– dreaming of the craft life?

    Reply
  4. thursday

    I would love to read an interview with Jenny Hart of Sublime Stitching or Gina from doe c doe. I'm in love with embroidery artists.

    Reply
  5. Carol Anne

    I love Elsie Flannigan's work! She is one of my biggest influence and such a sweet person! I would love to read an interview by her 🙂

    Reply
  6. Cindy

    I grew up on Carol Duvall. So I would Love to meet with and talk to her. Also Jennifer Perkins, Jackie Guerra and of course My favorite red headed knitter you. {Vickie Howell}

    Reply
  7. ArtistikDiva

    I've followed, watched and read interviews from you, Vickie, Kathy C-M, Jenny Hart, and lots of crafty ladies who I adore over the years. I'd like to read about Twinkie Chan, she seems like a fun gal, and Im sure a fun interview. BUT mostly your sister HOPE is a mystery to me- in a good way. I'd love to know more about her! Her dead rappers are the bomb diggity. Her talent is SO

    Reply
  8. Jennifer Perkins - Naughty Secretary Club

    I agree on a lot of these names. Makes me think I should start doing interviews on the blog. If you recall I used to write them for Craft Gossip, but they appear to all be gone off their website. Too bad there were some fun ones.

    Artistik Diva – I have a mini interview with my sister Hope from last year. It's more of a glitter how to.

    A lot of you guys mentioned

    Reply
  9. knittingmama

    I would like to read from you, Jay from Project Runway, and Debbie Stoller. Vickie Howell is the reason I'm a knitter and I have been a huge fan since! I was honored and excited when my reply to the Craft Corps. questionaire was released in an email. How awesome to be included, even if I'm not in the book!

    Reply
  10. Steph @HCC

    I watch She's crafty every day! Even when I have already seen the show like a million times.
    So wanna read about Wendy Russell the most – but am interested in everyone!

    Reply
  11. georgia

    Just ONE? Nope, no can do! I always love to read how people are making their passions come to life…too many crafters out there inspire me!

    Reply
  12. Diana in Sioux Falls

    I follow a lot of crafty blogs and I am so impressed with all of the crafters. I have been embroidering (Jenny Hart/Sublime Stitching), modge podging (Amy A./Modge Podge Rocks, and making felt projects). Would love to win the book and be inspired in hardcopy. 🙂

    Reply
  13. Anonymous

    Hi! I'm new here. Found you through Kathy Cano-Murillo's blog. As for who I'd like to read, anyone and everyone. 🙂 I am quite new to the crafting scene, and really don't know of many folks at all.

    — Tashi

    Reply
  14. SchleichMo

    I would like to read yours of course, love your stuff! Or your sisters. I am a huge fan of the dead rapper paintings and someday must own one! Thx!

    Reply

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