Since the 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 series started, I’ve been reading with great interest and enjoyment the lists of other crafty-type folks. Since my world revolves around handmade, I thought it would be fun to jump in.
So…here you go!
Me ~ Jennifer Ofenstein, aka ofenjen
One Project You Are Particularly Proud Of
This one is super easy. It’s the project I just wrapped up earlier this month, The Project of Doom (see what I did there, I even have “project” in the title!). The Project of Doom was a Harry Potter Block of the Week Mystery Quilt that I designed, wrote, edited and hosted from January – August of this year for Harry Potter Paper Piecing. It was my gift to the Harry Potter fandom, which has given me so very much. You can find The Project of Doom archived here (Fandom in Stitches) and here (Sewhooked).
Two Mistakes You’ve Made in the Past
1. Tying my self-worth to how accepting others are of my work. This was an especially hard lesson to learn. I hit a wall a couple of years ago when I had a book contract canceled. The publisher, after months of working with me, decided that my work wasn’t “mainstream” enough, despite having chosen my work for it’s whimsical nature. I had been working on the book project for about a year and a half at that point and it was a big pill to swallow. In the end I realized that my work is what it is because it’s part of who I am and being mainstream has never been my goal. I’m okay with that.
2. Much more fun, but still a mistake; doing too much at once. I love running community projects such as swaps and challenges and craft-alongs, and, and, and…the list just goes on! It’s much too easy to get very caught up in too many things and become overwhelmed. I’ve gotten much better at stepping back and taking a breathe before starting something new and huge.
Three Things That Make Your Work Unique
1. My whimsical style. I love hearing from people that they can recognize my pieces just by seeing them. That’s an awesome compliment.
2. I craft happy, and I think that comes through. What miserable person would spend time designing the things I do?
3. My close relationship with fandom. While I do make a lot of non-fandom related projects, both quilts and other crafts, my first love is fandom crafting and the community around it. I’ve been crafting for fandoms of all variety my entire life and am the proud owner of Fandom In Stitches, free fandom quilt patterns by fans for fans, and Harry Potter Paper Piecing, a Harry Potter quilting community.
Four Tools You Love to Use
1. My laptop. I draft my patterns, keep up with my quilting and craft communities, run swaps, challenges and online projects, post a weekly craft vlog called Talk To Me Tuesday, and run Sewhooked, Fandom in Stitches and Harry Potter Paper Piecing. I would be lost without my laptop!
2. My camera/camcorder. Being able to share real images from my life and my work, whether a digital photo or a during TTMT is absolutely invaluable. It makes what I share real and I love that!
3. My sewing machine, of course. It’s the tool I use to make the magic go from paper to reality. My current machine is a Babylock Quest 2. *pets*
4. Recycled paper. I draw on the back of everything. When an idea is stuck in my head and only a paper and pencil will do, I grab a sheet of the pile of recycled paper I keep and start sketching, plotting or calculating!
A Little Haunted and it’s inspiration drawing by my son.
1. The first one is easy, my family. They give me so much support and a ridiculous amount of good ideas. I’ll be putting my kids through college on the royalties they should have earned for sharing their ideas with me!
2. The books and movies that I love is obviously a big one. Harry Potter, the works of JRR Tolkien, Star Trek, Star Wars, Doctor Who… The results of many of those efforts can be seen on Fandom In Stitches or in my Craft tutorial archive.
3. Friends, friends, friends! My friends give me so many good ideas, I should have them on payroll! They’ll have to settle for homemade candy at Christmas.
4. Community feedback and comments. I love when ideas unfold through conversations in comments. They’ll often nudge me this way or that, sometimes completely unintentionally.
5. Past projects I’ve worked on. Sometimes I’ll be looking through photos of old project and wonder why I didn’t do it this or that way…and then I do!
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