Guest blogger: Jacqui van der Kaay

Read Jacqui’s first guest post that she wrote in July 2010.

In an effort to make sure you don’t get bored while I’m on my blogging holiday, I asked some friends to write guest blog posts… so far only Jacqui has so cross your fingers for others!

Creating clever crafts

Emma is one of those people who I describe as ‘clever crafters’. They are a group that I greatly admire. Not only do most of them have busy jobs – either in paid employment or as mothers – but they also create clever crafts. It is something that I really wish I could do, but I don’t seem to have inherited the clever crafting gene, despite my mother being an excellent sewer and cook.

Recently, I think there’s been what could be described as a craft revival. And in today’s consumer society, it’s certainly welcome. There are now regular craft fairs at places such as The Dowse; Pop Up shops are appearing around Wellington, the Martinbourgh fair, and others like it, attract record crowds.

Craft shops are popping up as well – Emma has hers in the Wairarapa which I will visit next time I’m there. And then of course there’s the internet – Felt and Etsy – to name just two.

I love buying things that clever crafters have made and do so whenever I can. I remember that not long after I left Ideas Shop, where Emma and I worked together, I bought more than half my Christmas presents from her – most of which were to send overseas. I figure that if I can’t be a clever crafter myself, the least I can do is support those who are. I have also started following several clever crafty websites.

Here are a couple of my favourites:
Emma Makes
Stripy sock studio
Vanilla Icing

Image from

There are endless sites for gorgeous children’s clothes too. As the mother to two gorgeous girls, who need gorgeous clothes, this can be expensive. Recently I finally indulged and bought two sweet little dresses from Smudge Clothing.

There’s something special about buying hand crafted products that often use vintage fabrics. It’s the care that’s gone into making it, the choice of fabric, clever design and most of all that it is the result of someone’s individual creativity.

There’s just one thing I need to do more of and that’s buying it for me!


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