TAFA: The Textile and Fiber Art List

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Denise Felton: Networking Needlework Queen on CraftGossip

Tatting by Jon Yusoff, Malaysia

Let’s say you love needlework so much that you’d like to be able to scan lots and lots of blogs and web sites every day for new trends, examples of inspirational work, and free patterns and tutorials. Do you have time for that? Yes, you do. At least, you have time to check the results of my research on your behalf.

I follow about 600 personal and commercial blogs that focus on a huge range of needlework topics—hand embroidery to tatting, quilting to goldwork, candlewicking to weaving. If a needle or fiber is involved, I want to know about it. Then I post my favorite finds throughout the day so you can find information about the new, the fresh, and the different quickly and easily.

I edit the Needlework News Blog of the CraftGossip Blog Network. What else can you find on my blog? Links! An absolute treasure trove of links. With each little news story, I post the name of the artist concerned, a link to the main site of that artist, and a link to the complete story I’m citing so you have several options for finding out more. And my blog is categorized. Suppose you’re primarily interested in quilting and you don’t really want to have to scroll through stories about bead embroidery, chicken scratch, and needlepoint to get to the juicy quilting tidbits. Just click the Quilting category in the sidebar, and the stories about your favorite topic pop up. You can also search my blog; so, for example, if you just want to see recent stories about crazy-quilter Allison Ann Aller, you can enter her name in the Search box, and all articles containing her name pop up.
Allison Ann Aller, Crazy Quilt, Full Photo and Detail

Some other features that are in the works: a new blogroll of sites that are featured regularly on Needlework News, and a list of sites that include information about crafting for a cause. And I’m expecting other excellent features to come from my favorite and most knowledgeable source: my readers.

It rocks my socks off when I log on and find comments from readers. I love their questions, their ideas, their suggestions, their tips, and even their corrections. It’s a good day, indeed, when I find a message submitted through the site’s Send Us Gossip feature or by e-mail, sharing a bit of news with me or just chatting about the art we love. I always follow up on reader-submitted suggestions. Let’s face it, even if I could scan 2,000 blogs a day, good stories would still slip past me. Readers also help me discover artists—including themselves! I get up and do the happy dance when readers invite me to look at their new tutorials, new products, or patterns.

But what if needlework isn’t your thing? Where do you get this kind of news about scrapbooking, or sewing, or knitting, or edible crafts? CraftGossip blog network is still your go-to source. Shellie Wilson and Vikram Goyal have assembled experts in a huge variety of crafts, each editing a blog in her own specialty, all tied together under the CraftGossip logo. There’s probably a blog for your favorite artform. And if not, why don’t you start one? The CraftGossip family is a rockin place to be!

I do a few other things when I’m not blogging for CraftGossip. I’m a writer, editor, and designer for a major IT company. I teach on line for a local community college. I’m a working artist—I market my collages and handcrafted greeting cards through a couple of local brick-and-mortar stores and through my Etsy shop. And once in a while, I manage to make a post on my personal blog. I can’t wait to retire so I can spend all my time crafting and blogging!

Denise Felton, Maumelle, Arkansas


1 comment:

“Sing like no one's listening, love like you've never been hurt, dance like nobody's watching, and live like it's heaven on earth.”

“Whatever you say, say it with conviction.”

(Both by the master, Mark Twain)

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