I am over the moon excited to have LiEr from ikat bag here today! I first came across her blog about this time last year when my sister called me on the phone (from Hawaii…brat) to tell me about the cutest tutorial for little boys pants. I have been hooked ever since. She is one of the most genuine writers out there, and always generous in sharing her sewing talents with the most amazing tutorials and patterns. Aside from sewing, she shares fun projects she enjoys with her 3 girls, including the coolest things you can make with cardboard, crafts, and her thoughtful and honest take on motherhood. She truly is a gem.
The must read posts….hmmm, this is tough because I really should point out her skills that go beyond sewing. But man, how can you not? Her pocket series, sewing from scratch series, should be a staple in any sewing enthusiasts bookmarks. But please don’t stop there, her entire sidebar is filled with pure goodness!
Now onto her list!
LiEr From Ikat Bag
Something hit me just before Christmas last year – I bet it had to do with the crazy Let Us All Make Homemade Christmas Gifts For Everyone In The Known Universe trend. I did it two years in a row and then decided I was done. I wanted Christmas back. But anyway, it got me thinking about balance. I’ve gone from working professional to stay-home-mom to immigrant-stay-home-mom to crafting stay-home-mom to crafting-and-blogging-stay-home-mom to crafting-and-blogging-and-etsy-stay-home-mom and, ahhhh… I wanted to have fun again. Blogging was and still is a great creative outlet and a means to maintain sanity, but it, too, along with the rest of my crafting, had begun to feel not very exciting in the last year. I traced it back to the time I started my etsy and pattern shop (late 2009) – that’s probably when some of the pure fun began to change to something responsible and “proper”. Not bad in itself, and now that I actually know what it was, it’s quite silly, really, that it caused me the amount of consternation and puzzlement that it did! Anyway, I thought it would make an interesting bullet list to share what I’d learned this past year from losing and finding balance – both from my own journey and from other people’s that I’ve watched evolve on the internet.
How To Stay Afloat In Crafty Blogland:
1 Sew/craft as if you don’t have a blog. Sometimes make something and refuse to post about it. If you can’t do it, take a blog break.
2 Give yourself time to grow a thick skin – more time than you think you need.
3 Remember that blogland isn’t the real world. Find something solid to remind you of who you are.
4 Let other bloggers/crafters/etsy entrepreneurs be your inspiration but refuse to let them be your yardstick.
5 Eat nutella.
6 Remember that etsy/any retail extension of your blog is a bona fide JOB – i.e. long hours, expenses, unexpected delays in getting dinner on the table. And taxes. Make a good strong boundary between this job and your life.
7 Remember that ideas can strike anyone anytime, and the same idea can strike a thousand people at the same time. If you develop and interpret it, and can honestly say so, the product is yours, even if it looks like someone else’s.
8 Anything that is supremely precious to you (like a fabulous idea) should be left unposted. The internet has no boundaries.
9 Play with your children now and tell yourself that you will have time to sew/craft/write that book when they are in college. Plus, the stuff you think is so cool now will be nothing compared to the hot trends then.
10 Buy some stuff. Don’t make it all. I have never regretted buying something I could have sewn, but I have regretted sewing something I could have bought.
11 Pick fewer kinds of crafts but excel at them.
12 It is perfectly OK not to be funny. Especially on days when you wish you were funny.
13 Expect to lose balance, and find balance, and lose balance, and find balance, and lose balance and find balance all through your entire life. Humans are exceptionally poor at remembering lessons they’ve learned!
The weekend is upon us! Have a lovely, lovely one!