Will I see you at HGTV Magazine’s Blogger Block Party?

HGTV Blogger Block PartyThanks to HGTV Magazine for sponsoring this post. All opinions are 100% honest & completely my own.

I was super excited to discover HGTV Magazine’s 3rd Annual Blogger Block Party event a few weeks back. This is a free event scheduled for Monday, August 22, 2016 in my hometown of New York City, and I hope to see you there! (You can register right here.)

Each year, HGTV Magazine brings together a group of influential “lifestyle bloggers, designers and style savvy consumers” to share creativity and inspiration. Last year’s event had over 500 attendees and they expect even more this year. The event will be conveniently located at 404 10th Avenue between West 33rd and 34th Streets in Manhattan.

Let me tell you a bit more about the event. This year,  HGTV Magazine‘s Blogger Block Party is aligned with NY NOW, which is taking place just a few blocks away at the Javits Center from August 20-24, 2016. NY NOW is a huge market for handmade, home, lifestyle, and gift products. HGTV Magazine‘s Blogger Block Party will actually be the exclusive sponsor of NY NOW’s Social Media Lounge.

HGTV Magazine's Blogger Block Party 2016 agenda
Click to enlarge the agenda!

HGTV Magazine‘s Blogger Block Party has a fantastic schedule planned including speakers Emily Henderson from Style By Emily Henderson, Genevieve Gorder, Sherry and John Petersik from Young House Love, and Rachel Faucett from Handmade Charlotte. I’m particularly looking forward to hearing Emily Bidwll from Etsy share a Design & DIY Trend Watch! And, of course, there will be opportunities to get to know advertising partners and other DIY and crafty influencers.

So, if you’ll be in the New York City area on Monday, August 22, 2016, register for HGTV Magazine‘s Blogger Block Party now! And, let me know you’re going to be there so we can have the chance to meet in person, too.

I'm going to @hgtvmagpromo #bloggerblockparty in 2016. Underground Crafter, let's meet up there!Click To Tweet

Holiday Stashdown Challenge 2016 Sponsor Spotlight: Paper from Heaven

Announcing the Holiday Stashdown crochet-a-long 2016! #HolidayStashdownCAL2016In this post, I’m spotlighting the final prize sponsor for the February monthly giveaway for the Holiday Stashdown Crochet-a-Long. (If you’re just learning about the CAL now, you can find more details here.)

This post contains affiliate links.

This post’s featured sponsor is Paper from Heaven. Show your support by following Paper from Heaven on Facebook | Instagram | Newsletter.

Sponsor Spotlight: Paper From Heaven

Paper from Heaven is an Etsy shop where organization is all rolled up. Katie is the maker behind the shop, and one of her favorite quotes is by Marcus Aurelius: “The secret of all victory lies in the organization of the non-obvious.”

Paper from Heaven is a February crochet-a-long sponsor, and Katie took a moment to stop by for an interview so you can find out more about her shop! Photos are copyright Paper from Heaven and used with permission.

An interview with Katie from Paper from Heaven on EtsyUnderground Crafter (UC): How did you first get started with sewing? What other crafts do you enjoy?

Katie: I always had been around sewing. My mom was sewing before I was born. I didn’t think it was for me and I passed every opportunity I was given to learn from her before she moved away after I was married. I had quit my job less than a year before and was home with my 2 small children. I just needed an outlet, I needed something I could do for myself. I soon heard about Etsy and started selling online, which just fueled my hobby. After a few years it became time to decide to go back to work or make my hobby work for me.

Paper from Heaven on Etsy's mini crochet hook case
UC: What inspired you to start Paper From Heaven? Can you tell us about your Etsy shop?

Katie: I began this journey as Paper From Heaven sewing and creating fun organizing products for kids. It started with a love for the idea of crayon rolls for the kiddos, but I wanted to make them different and more versatile for different types of crayons. I came up with the design of a larger pocket to hold more crayons in Summer 2011, and the mini crayon roll followed in Fall 2011. I love the design and that it gives customers the ability to have their crayon needs grow with their kiddos!

ILC February 2016 BannersAs time moved on I began expanding my product line to other areas where creativity and organization needs to be more fun. As my business grew I began to enlist the help of my husband to handle some of the administrative tasks. Because of his commitment to PaperFromHeaven he was able to go back to school to work on his masters degree. So now we are here in North Carolina being creative and experiencing the East Coast life.

Paper from Heaven on Etsy's mini crochet hook case
UC: What is your favorite crafty book in your collection?

Katie: A is for Apron. I love the concepts and designs in that book, it’s just something that sparks my creativity and love for fun aprons!

UC: Do you have any crafty websites you visit regularly for community or inspiration?

Katie: Cliche enough, I follow Pinterest more than a particular site. I typically look at the picture and if easy enough I reproduce it without even going to the website. I rarely follow a pattern, I usually just wing it and figure it out myself. I usually have an idea and just figure out what works. I did that with all of the designs in my shop, either I had an idea or someone came to me with a concept and I just sat down and figured it all out on paper and made one. The Mini Crochet Hook Case concept came from a friend who wanted something to store her hooks in.

Paper from Heaven on Etsy's mini crochet hook caseUC: Tell us about the Paper From Heaven prize for the Holiday Stashdown CAL. What can one lucky winner expect to win from your shop?

Katie: You’ll receive a Mini Crochet Hook Case in any fabric I have available in my shop! (The ones listed, as well as any of the newer fabrics.)

By the way, Katie’s large cosmetic bags work great as crochet project bags!

Thank you, Paper from Heaven, for sponsoring the crochet-a-long.

Which Paper from Heaven product do you like the best?

Holiday Stashdown Challenge 2015 Sponsor Spotlight: katrinkles

Are you having as much fun with the Holiday Stashdown Crochet-a-Long 2015 as I am? (If you’re just learning about it now, there’s still plenty of time to join in. You can find more details about the CAL here.) I’m shining a spotlight on each of our generous giveaway sponsors with a dedicated post over the coming weeks.

Today’s featured sponsor katrinkles. Show your support by following katrinkles on Facebook.

All images are copyright katrinkles and used with permission.

This post cointains affiliate links.

Sponsor Spotlight

Interview with Katy Westcott from katrinkles

A crochet gauge ruler designed by katrinkles.
A crochet gauge ruler designed by katrinkles.

Underground Crafter (UC): How did you learn to crochet?

Katy: After college I worked in a goldsmith’s shop in New York City.  A coworker noticed me drawing these intricate, lacy patterns on our lunch break and decided I should learn how to crochet.  Once I got the hang of it I started making doilies that looked like those drawings.  It was a great activity for my subway commute.  Eventually I learned how to read crochet patterns and that led to making scarves and hats and sweaters.  I especially love when you get to the stage of a crochet project where you have memorized your motif.  You can pick it up anywhere and just go, eventually combining them into something awesome.

UC: What inspired you to start katrinkles? Can you tell us about your Etsy shop?

Katy: By trade I’m a jeweler, so I took a laser cutting workshop thinking it would be an interesting thing to incorporate into my metal work.  We have an amazing non-profit community arts center in Providence called AS220, which has a laser cutter in their lab.  I was already knitting and crocheting at that point, so once I learned how to laser cut I instantly thought of making buttons.  Since buttons are the intersection of knitting and jewelry it made sense that I would be making them.

Years before this, my first product was double pointed needle holders made of rubber and elastic to hold my WIPs.  I started making and selling those long before I thought of it as a business, but it was my buttons and knitting needle gauges that really got katrinkles started.  Having a booth at local fiber events and a shop online was a hobby at first while I worked full time in the Jewelry Industry, but early this year I finally left my last part time job to be able to focus exclusively on katrinkles.

Gauge ruler and buttons by katrinkles.
Gauge ruler and buttons by katrinkles.

UC: You’re multicraftual. Do you have a favorite “go-to” craft or does it depend on your mood or time of year?

Katy: I’ve come to realize that it depends on time of year.  As soon as it starts getting springy outside I get an itch to start crocheting lacy tops out of cotton thread and knitting cotton dish cloths. In the middle of the summer I become engrossed with sewing tops and dresses.  Then, in the fall, I get back to knitting socks and sweaters and spinning wool.

Katy's favorite craft books.
Katy’s favorite craft books.

UC: What is your favorite crafty book in your collection? 

Katy: Oh man, this is a tough one!  I’ve narrowed it down to three:

  1. I’ve knit a lot of the sweaters in the New England Knits book, by Cecily Glowik MacDonald and Melissa LaBarre, and there are still more in my queue.  The sweaters are timeless and most are also great for showcasing buttons.  Plus I’m a New Englander through and through.
  2. Denyse Schmidt Quilts is full of amazing things! Someday I hope to sew a quilt. I pretty much want to make all of the quilts in this book. She’s a fellow RISD alum and I discovered her book at RISD Works, which is a shop on campus which sells only the work of RISD alumni.
  3. I can’t not include a jewelry book:  Calder Jewelry, with photographs by Maria Robledo and Edited by Alexander S.C. Rower, is a huge exhibition catalog I picked up at the Calder show at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Calder’s playful use of line and interesting cold connections are infinitely inspiring to me.  I could thumb through this book for hours.

UC: Do you have any crafty websites you visit regularly for community or inspiration?  

Katy: I love Ravelry, of course, it is the best!  Aside from that, my community and inspiration are mostly on Instagram these days.  Instead of following each of the individual crafty blogs I used to read I now follow their Instagram feeds.

A granny square hook gauge by katrinkles.
A granny square hook gauge by katrinkles.

UC: Tell us about the katrinkles prize for the Holiday Stashdown CAL. What can one lucky winner expect to win from your shop?

Katy: I started crocheting before I took up knitting so it’s always been important to me to have tools and buttons for crocheters as well as knitters.  I have a few crochet hook gauge designs now but the one with the granny square was my first and it’s my favorite.  There’s something so satisfying about the simplicity of a granny square, it’s fun to make and they can be so beautiful.  The granny square crochet hook gauge is made out of bamboo.

UC: Besides Etsy, where else can people find katrinkles in the coming months?

Katy: I will be at the Fiber Festival of New England in Springfield, MA the weekend of November 7th, 2015. (I will be sharing a booth with Maybe Tomorrow Farm.) I will also vending the Knitting Weekend at Historic Slater Mill in Pawtucket, RI the weekend of January 17th 2016. Lots of interesting classes and events connected with this even in addition to the marketplace, which is free.

Thank you, katrinkles, for sponsoring the crochet-a-long.

Which crochet accessory in the katrinkles Etsy shop do you like the best?

Don’t forget to show your support of today’s featured sponsor by following katrinkles on Facebook.