Guest Post ~ I’ll Show You Mine if You Show Me Yours: How Pinterest Changed the Crafts Game

Note: This is a guest post by Sandra Coleman.

There was a time, not all that long ago, when the term ‘crafts’ conjured up images of grandmothers and knitting needles, or maybe the crocheted afghan that always hung on the back of Roseanne Conner’s couch throughout each season of the television show.

These days, however, when thinking of crafts, most people think of a little white ‘p’ with a red circle around it.  It’s the Pinterest logo, and you either know it well, or you’ve probably heard about it.  Pinterest launched in 2010 and has become a phenomenon with various demographics, many of them crafters.

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A quick search through Pinterest reveals crafts that definitely do not conjure up visions of grandma.  Sunflower string art, horseshoe wreaths, beautiful hand painted mason jars, and distressed wooden signs are just a few of the crafts that I scrolled by in the first thirty seconds of tapping my Pinterest app.

According to socialdraft.com, Pinterest now boasts over one hundred million users, and yes, you did read that right, one hundred million.  That’s a lot of Pinterest boards.  Over 85% of users are women, and being a user myself, I would wager that a huge chunk of those are either crafters themselves, or those who purchase crafts from others.

Pinterest isn’t just a place to look at and pin pretty crafts, though.  Many small business owners, including those with Etsy and Facebook stores are finding a way to use Pinterest to their selling advantage.  One only needs to create boards and pin their own crafts for sale to have the potential to drive up visibility, foot traffic, and even sales in their online stores. Online statistics from Socialdraft.com show that 75% of Pinterest users have purchased something that they saw on Pinterest.

But, it seems that most Pinterest users, this one included, just want to ooh and ahh over the handmade paper flowers, share pictures of immaculate craft rooms, and occasionally try our hand at making glitter ornaments, and that’s ok too. So, whether you are already a crafter, or just like looking at pretty things, log onto Pinterest and check out a crafty board, or even make one of your own. Oh, and don’t forget to read about the ‘Seventeen Hot Glue Gun Tricks That Will Change Your Life.’ I’m still reeling from that one, myself.

 

Sandra Coleman

Wanna see mine? You can find me at: Pinterest.com/Sandra1023 & Twitter.com/SandraLSC

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Progress and Puppeh Noses

Cross Stitch Progress Update: I completed the 2nd quarter of my tiger in grass cross stitch pattern about two weeks ago. Haven’t picked it up since, though. Don’t know why, but I just haven’t been in the mood to cross stitch. It will get done eventually.

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The other day on my way home from work, I decided to look around the bookstore that I live behind. Yes, this is the best and worst possible place for me to live, I have to pass a bookstore every time I need to go somewhere. While there, I perused my usual genre shelves (horror, mystery, sci-fi) but this time, something caught my eye. Some Neil Gaiman books were picks of the month, I picked up the two on display and went searching for the rest. They were all on a shelf that was way above my head (typical, really. I’m 5’4″, so a lot of things end up too high for me to reach), but I was able to reach a couple more books. In the end, I walked out with four of his books, Stardust, Neverwhere, The Ocean at the End of the Lane, and American Gods.

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And finally, another change in my life: I finally stopped beating around the bush on dietary changes and started a moderate low carb ‘diet’ last Sunday (Oct 23rd). Moderate means I aim for under 50 grams carbs net (net = carbs – fibre). It’s kind of embarrassing to share this, but my starting weight was 300.5 pounds. Ugh. As of this morning, I’m down to 292.3 pounds! A total of 8.2 pounds lost! My initial goal is to get under 180 pounds (the weight I was at 18), overall goal is to get to about 150 pounds. From all of my research, that is still overweight for my height (which again, is 5 foot 4 inches), but I don’t want to lose too much weight and end up under weight. I may revamp this goal as I get closer to the 150 mark, but that is still a ways off. I am aiming for 30 days on this new way of eating at the very least, though I’m hoping to keep this up forever, in a nutshell.

Being a person with anxiety, I worry about if I can keep up this weight loss. So far, I’ve found it easy to do, but it’s only been a week and tomorrow is Halloween, my favourite holiday of the year! I don’t know how I’m going to make it without sampling some candy, but I’m going to try my hardest! Day 30 is my parent’s anniversary, so it’ll be a triple celebration for me. Making it to 30 days, 38 years of marriage for my parents, and another anniversary my dad has made it to despite having terminal cancer (told 2-3 years, MAAAAYBE 5 if chemo went well, in 2010!)! If I can maintain the weight loss around at least 5 pounds per week, I will reach my goal by the middle of May. If I’m lucky, I’ll reach the under 180 pounds by Dad’s birthday and he can celebrate my first milestone with me while we celebrate his birthday!

Ugh, this got serious and sappy fast, and no, I’m not crying over here, someone’s cutting onions!

To lighten things up and for your amusement, some pictures of my dog sleeping in a cute and funny position. All pics taken with my phone, which turned out pretty well considering it’s not the greatest camera out there.

Changes and Crafting

I have decided that I need to make a few changes, in my life and with this blog. I started this blog with the intention of writing about my reading challenge with a few other odds and ends thrown in. Well, my reading challenge isn’t going well (but that’s ok) and honestly, I find it hard to review books without giving away the entire plot of the book. I found reading and blogging were becoming a chore, and so, along with depression rearing its ugly head and a few other reasons, I let everything fall by the wayside.

The changes I’m making in my life revolve around my health. I’m overweight and don’t eat the best, so I’m starting with small steps and changing my eating habits to some healthier ones (i.e. reaching for carrots instead of chips when I want something crunchy). As for this blog, well, I’m going to post about anything. Crafts, books, games, random things I find, etc.

With all the changes, I find the title of this blog is quite fitting. There is a new horizon ahead, and I’m reaching for it with eagerness and excitement.

Now, on to the ‘crafting’ part of the title.

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I started this cross stitch about 5 years ago. It keeps getting put aside for holidays, other projects, or just because I grew bored of it, and then buried beneath the unsorted crafting supplies and junk in my spare room. But, since finding it a week ago, I’ve made great progress. Since it’s a fair sized pattern, I broke it down into quadrants. I began with the bottom left quadrant (which is now fully completed), and then moved on to the bottom right quadrant after I found it again last week.

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When complete, I don’t know what I’m going to do with this project. I may frame it and hang it up somewhere. As of right now, I’m just looking forward to finishing it.

The next project will be one of the seven new, and geeky, patterns I got for my birthday from Etsy. I am also going to be working on a Bill Murray cross stitch for my brother, which I hope to complete by Christmas so it can be part of his gift. It’s going to be quite the project, with the finished piece (just the pattern itself) being about 14 inches by 14 inches! To compare, the current project shown above will be 5 inches wide by 7 inches tall when complete. Maybe I should get started on that one now…

Here are the links for the patterns from Etsy: Alohomora, Cheshire Cat, Feed Me, Geeky Alphabet, Take This, Turn on the Light, Zelda’s Lullaby, Bill Murray.