Crafting Made Easy: Guest Post From Cara at I Dabble

*The following is a guest post from my friend Cara at I Dabble. Her blog is amazing because it’s completely nicheproof–she does it all! Why settle when you can dabble?*

I am so thrilled Sage asked me to guest post. She has some of the most realistic advice out there, doesn’t she? My blog, I Dabble is a lifestyle blog about fashion, food, and craft projects so I thought I’d share some crafting advice with you.

Crafting used to be reserved for rainy days and school projects. Thanks to amazing sites like Pinterest, Etsy, and Craftster, the craft industry has boomed and become a wee bit intimidating for even the greatest craft enthusiast. If you have always thought about dipping your toes in the craft pond, here are a few things to remember as you get started:

1. Start simple and inexpensively.

It is so easy these days to find beautiful projects, beautiful, expensive projects. I am still guilty of this all.the.time. I’m currently knitting an annoying sweater because the yarn cost me $130. Before grabbing your wallet and running to AC Moore, look around your house; what do you already have that you can repurpose or create with? Some old holiday cards? How about ribbon and fabric scraps?

2. Pinterest should be a source of inspiration, but not the gold standard.

Don’t get me wrong, I draw a lot of ideas from Pinterest but it is very easy to compare your end product to the perfect ones featured there. Keep in mind, teams or professionals for styled shoots make many of those photos, or, the posted picture may be the millionth attempt at that crocheted guinea pig sweater.

3. Speaking of a million attempts, if at first your project does not succeed, cut, glue and stick again.

Very few of us do anything perfectly the first time, right? So why should your first friendship bracelet, stocking, or letterpress card be? My first attempt at sweater mittens produced an oven mitt sized mitten with a wrist best fit for a 3 year old. Mistakes happen, don’t sweat them; embrace them as part of the creative learning process. Take a deep breath and try again…or move on, maybe it wasn’t the project for you. That’s ok too. You tried something new and that’s part of what I love best about crafting.

4. Don’t be afraid to be tweak or add your own personal touches to a project.

Taking inspiration in your own direction may yield something cooler than the original project. Not to mention you will have serious bragging rights for making something totally your own.

5. Think outside the computer screen.

The Internet is saturated with amazing ideas but don’t limit yourself to what’s on the screen in front of you. Craft ideas can come from anywhere and anything. I ran a blisteringly hot Boston Marathon in April and post-race my husband and I came up with a crafting solution to help ease the pain of a hot run. (Look for our cooling race gear at a big box store near you in Spring 2013…just kidding.) But seriously, I draw a lot of project inspiration from nature, magazines, and catalogues (J.Crew and Anthropologie have fantastic inspiration, see a few inspired projects here.)

Whatever you do, just have fun with it! Crafting should be relaxing, fun, and maybe a great outlet for your brain outside work.

*Thanks, Cara! Do you like Cara’s crafting style? Are you ready to start dabbling? Click here to visit I Dabble.*


  1. xvavaveganx on August 23, 2012 at 6:21 pm

    Great tips! I’ve been wanting to do more crafting and I’ll definitely be bookmarking this post so I can look back on it! Thanks!

  2. Anna@ThriftyBusiness on August 22, 2012 at 6:20 pm

    I have to second the first bit of advice – start cheap!!! I went wild on purchasing Christmas-related crafting goods that cost too much for comfort so I’m now compelled to finish them (though I’d rather do something else) because I can’t bear to waste the money/material. The most important thing to take away from this is to avoid comparing yourself unnecessarily – craft for love!

    • Sage Grayson on August 29, 2012 at 2:17 pm

      Starting cheap when crafting is a great idea. I’ve gone on sprees buying scrapbook supplies, and it gets so expensive. I have tons of stuff at home right now, and I should use it up before buying more stuff. I love your advice about crafting for love. 🙂

  3. GlutenFreeHappyTummy on August 22, 2012 at 1:45 pm

    that’s a great tip to keep in mind about pinterest:)

  4. Cara on August 22, 2012 at 9:15 am

    Thanks for having me Sage! Hopefully your readers will be a little less intimidated by the creative process!

    • Sage Grayson on August 22, 2012 at 2:22 pm

      You’re so welcome, Cara. Thanks for sharing your tips!