NOTE: All activities are done online or mobile devices.
Start with the Search
Use the images and information you find online for inspiration. This might include a pattern, color usage, final piece or anything else in an image that inspires you. The images do not have to be craft items that you find inspiring. It might be a sunset or a cool car. Start looking at images for inspiration.
Ideas can be gotten from others doing your craft or a similar craft. For example, I pull a lot of cross-stitch ideas for plastic canvas. Start looking at images for more ideas.
As you start looking at images for inspiration and ideas, you’ll want to save the bookmarks, images, PDFs or whatever else you find online. Use sites such as Pinterest or Evernote to keep the items you find in Steps 1 and 2 organized for future use. Determine what kind of organization system will be the best for you.
4. Text, audio or video.
Don’t feel restricted to one type of delivery. You’ll find help not only in text, but audio and video offerings. This includes podcasts. With your craft in mind, explore sites that support your craft.
A materials search can begin online. You will find a greater variety of materials online than locally. This might be because you are looking for something that is no longer available locally, due to lack of popularity. Also, the original materials may not be available and you’ll need to find a replacement. For example, you can get paper or fine plastic for cross-stitch if you don’t want to use the cloth. When you change materials, you may need to make adjustments to your pattern. Often, these sites will help provide information for this.
Also you can find help with the materials you have such as what items adhere best with your glue, which crochet hook to use with a specific yarn and more. What kind of information can you find that will be useful to you in your crafting?
Do you have craft tools that you don’t remember how to use? Perhaps you can’t find the tool you need and need to see if something you have can work in a pinch. You can see demonstrations and more online to help you get the most of your tools. If you find something particularly helpful, be sure to save a copy as it’s not guaranteed to be there the next time you need it.
7. Find a craft.
You can find basics for many crafts online. From a video to photo series, you can get visual instructions. If text works better for you, you can also find instructions on the basics of almost any craft. Look for basic instructions for a craft you’ve been thinking of trying.
8. Tutorials, tips and techniques.
When you want to expand your knowledge on a particular craft, you can find tutorials, tips and techniques online. For example, my favorite crafts tend to be paper. In the United States, most paper crafts fall under the title of scrapbooking. The United Kingdom has much more to offer for paper crafters and I frequently go to their sites.
For crafters, patterns are the instructions to make a final piece. It’s similar to a recipe in that you follow a specific set of directions to come to a final product . . . in this case a final crafted piece. There are many free patterns online you can download for personal use. This is a great way to try a craft to see if you like it before investing money in it. Look for patterns in a craft you are interested in.
Templates are outlines of an item. A template may be of an envelope, box, card, etc. Many magazines and materials suppliers provide free templates as a way to draw in customers. Explore templates online. For more information on templates, check out the Enrichment Project badge program “Explore Templates.”
Cards and scrapbooking sites often have sketches. These are graphics showing a general idea of how an item might be arranged to be pleasing. Check out some sketches online. How might you use these in your crafting? Be sure to look beyond the craft they are for.
Printables can be a source of supplies, templates or even graph paper to design your own patterns. Many online vendors also sell printables of magazines and newsletters with projects and more. Printables tend to be in PDF (Adobe Acrobat) format, though you may also find them in graphic formats such as JPG. Find free printables that speak to your creative self.
Not only will you want to share what you make, but you’ll want to see what others make. This will give you more ideas and inspiration. When you finish a project, look at the possibilities for sharing what you make online. How and where might you be able to share it?
14. Social crafting.
You can make crafting social. Quilting circles were groups of people who would get together to work on a quilt (or more than one). Today, you can use the Web for social crafting via swaps, competitions and more. Explore how you can share your craft with others in an interactive, social setting.
You can find applications that allow you to do part or all of various crafts. For example, you can do photo crafting easily on a mobile digital device. Look through the crafting applications available for your device and try one that interests you.
16. Digital tools.
Online you can find sites that allow you to do crafting, conversions, graphing, image manipulation and more. These tools help make your crafting experience easier. Explore the digital tools available.
17. What else?
The Internet constantly changes. We may find the amount of crafting we do online continues to grow. As you looked around at the possibilities of crafting online, did you find something else that piqued your interest? Do you see a possibility of a new way to craft that isn’t yet available that you might be willing to attempt?
Sites to Explore
To download a PDF of this badge program, click here: EP_Craft Online