Welcome! It’s time for another chat with another lovely creative blogger. Say hello to Blair Stocker of Wise Craft!
New to Morning Coffee? Monday mornings we sit down with some of my favorite writers & creative people, and get to know a little bit about their blogs and why they do what they do.
Once in a while I also interview Polka Dot Cottage readers, so if you write a creative blog and would like to participate some future week, drop me a line and we’ll talk about it!
Ready for today’s interview? Let’s go 🙂
Why Wise Craft?
Add Wise Craft to the list of blogs I have been visiting for many years. Blair has her hands in many media, most of which are the same ones that appeal to me. So naturally, I’ve stuck around. I had a great time participating in Blair’s Granny Square Sampler crochet-along a few years ago (although, shhhhh – my blanket isn’t finished yet!) and I often find myself sharing Wise Craft links or Blair’s photos in my Weekend Favorites.
There is a book now: Wise Craft: Turning Thrift Store Finds, Fabric Scraps, and Natural Objects Into Stuff You Love, which is full of the kind of great stuff that has made Blair’s blog so popular.
Q&A with Blair Stocker
It’s so lovely to have Blair with us this morning. Read on!
Welcome, Blair! When and why did you start your blog?
I started blogging in 2005, when my kids were small and I was home all day with them. It kept me connected to my creative side, gave me a place to share my work (originally with family, mostly). Days were often a blur when I was chasing small ones around all day, and my blog was proof to myself that I was still, in fact, making all kinds of things. I loved the journal keeping aspect of it.
Has your blog evolved significantly since you began it, and if so, how?
My blog has evolved quite a bit, which is inevitable when you’ve been blogging as long as I have. I wrote a book, Wise Craft: Turning Thrift Store Finds, Fabrics Scraps, and Natural Objects into Stuff You Love, in 2014, and now I regularly speak with groups and teach classes about creatively reusing all kinds of materials. My kids are now 12 (almost 13) and 15, so they don’t necessarily want to be a regular part of my blog, which I completely get. I have more time now to focus on creating a handmade business out of this obsessive passion of hand making that I have. I still post a lot of projects, but these days I post less about family, although they still sneak in there on occasion!
It seems that Instagram has become the place I share the more up to the minute, day-to-day glimpses into my daily life and studio work. I love the immediacy of Instagram.
How does your blog fit in to your daily life?
I try to make a blog posting schedule, but only manage to stick to it sporadically. My blog is specifically for posting my own creative work (I don’t have ads or sponsored content) so I don’t feel pressure to post every single day, but I like to be consistent. Often during big creative spurts I will write several blog posts all at once in a day. Other times I will use sitting down and writing a blog post to get me motivated. But I don’t ever like to post without thinking about it, those posts are never good.
Is blogging something you can easily explain to your family and friends?
It’s never been easily described, but then I also tend to stumble over a good description of what it is I do, exactly, to anyone. My father lives 3,000 miles away from me and doesn’t own a computer, so I’m sure I’ve never tried to explain a blog to him, because he would have no context. My mother checks in often, but only gets really excited when she sees pictures of my kids 😀
How important are reader comments to you?
Commenting used to be the single most important conversational tool to bloggers. Reader popularity meant lots of comments, which was always the goal, right? I think that has drastically changed. I turned commenting off on my blog when I moved it to its new platform. Not because I didn’t want to hear from readers, but because it never feels good to measure a blog post by the amount of comments. Plus, the back and forth I have with my readers tends to happen on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, but not on the blog. I read lots of blogs, but rarely comment, its just too hard on my phone.
In what ways has blogging enhanced your life, if any?
Well, I would have never written a book if it hadn’t been for my blog. It became an only CV of sorts, to show what I was capable of doing. After years of blogging about and posting projects I’ve done, it became clear that I had an aesthetic that I’d never even stopped to consider. (“Wow, I like a particular shade of blue- ALOT!”). I have made friends and connections that will be a part of my life from now on. Friends I know I can count on, who support me (and vice versa), and some of them I may never meet in person. It’s strange to think about, but blogging has made the world delightfully smaller for me.
What’s next for you?
I will continue to produce more quilt patterns, teach, DIY our home and blog about it, and hopefully write more books!
Thank you, Blair, for taking the time to answer my questions and for allowing me to use your photos to illustrate our conversation. It’s been a pleasure!