Hello, out there!
My name is Leslie King and I am a craft-o-holic. This blog is something that I have wanted to create for many years now, but only recently have I worked up the courage to do so! My sincere thanks to all of my family, friends, and the AMAZING members from the Fans of Crafter's Companion on HSN Facebook Group for your invaluable support and the encouragement to follow my dreams!
Now...a little bit about me. You often hear people say, "I've been doing this for my entire life." The statement is usually an exaggeration, but in my case, it is very nearly true. My earliest crafting memory dates back many, many years - before I was old enough to attend school. (We'll just say that I'm 40-something and leave it at that!) My grandmother was an incomparable hand quilter. She had an enormous window in her living room that she would sit in front of, in her rocker, to piece and sew her squares. When I wasn't rolling in the dirt with the dogs, digging in the garden with my grandpa, or playing with the numerous animals on their farm, I was at my Mamaw's feet. I would thread her needles for her in exchange for fabric scraps, which I then used to sew my own patchwork baby doll clothes. (I even talked her out of an old pair of nylons once that I stuffed with batting scraps and tissues, then knotted into a doll(ish) figure, à la balloon animal style - my mom still has the horrifying thing! LOL.)
Since those early days, I have tried my hand at just about every type of handcraft imaginable. My wonderful Auntie D. (also a craft-o-holic) taught me everything from knitting to my earliest attempts in papercrafting. My ridiculously talented Auntie B. educated me on machine sewing and painting. And my awesome mother, Joyce - who is STILL a better colorist than I am! - taught me the most valuable lessons of all: never stop doing what you love, never let disappointment or rejection smash your dreams, and - most importantly - NEVER GIVE UP! I was an incredibly lucky child to have been so surrounded by such creative, loving, and strong women!
Unfortunately, with the exception of a VERY lucky few, crafting does NOT a career make. So, for more than 20 years I channeled my inner creativity into my work as a Graphic Designer and Website Designer. (I've also held such illustrious positions as: bookstore clerk, AM Radio DJ, Tack Department Manager at a Western supply store, a FedEx Gal...you name it!) I married a career Army man - who retired in 2012 after 21 years to make the enormous career leap to government contractor - so, until recently, permanency has been a rare and elusive thing for me. However, no matter how many times we moved, no matter what work I had to do for a *real* job, crafting has always been the one constant in my life. From the local County Art Show award I won in elementary school, to the card I finished last night, I have ALWAYS crafted.
While I do still occasionally tackle sewing projects, (mostly home decor items) and I am always open to wreath-making, painting, woodworking with my husband - you name it - my primary craft focus for many years now has been card making. My first "grown-up" makes (meaning: something more than crayon or magic marker on construction paper as a child) that I actually felt confident enough in to send to people were done in (I believe) 1994 or 1995. I was a dirt poor Army wife who could afford to either buy Christmas cards or mail them - but not both. It was decades before I had a Gemini, a Cuttlebug, a scoreboard, a guillotine, a Cricut, cutting dies, embossing folders, or any other of a hundred things that I use and take for granted every single day now. I had a 4 pack of no-name dodgy discount edging shears, a single oval punch, and a single star punch. And maybe $5 to my name. I can remember getting to make the trip home to visit my mother over Thanksgiving and going down to the MJ Designs store that used to be near her house. (Those were a thing once upon a time, look it up.) Back then you could buy like 20 sheets of scrapbook paper for a dollar. I snatched up as many "Christmas Colored" sheets as I could afford while still having enough money left over for glue. Glitter was out of the question, surely a luxury only the rich were meant to possess.
Upon our return to our dumpy little house, in our dumpy military town, (which shall remain nameless to protect the guilty) I sat down in our living room floor with my plethora of high end crafting supplies and cut. And cut. And cut. I honestly can't remember how many of these cards I made, but it was more than a lot. And when all was said and done, I was ridiculously proud of them.
I've come a long way since then - especially in the amount of crafting supplies I own! And I would love for you to join me on my continuing crafter's journey! I'm a firm believer in the old axiom that one should learn something new each and every day. And I promise to share with you both my successful, and not so successful projects. In the meantime, you can always find my most recent makes on Pinterest, and find me at Fans of Crafter's Companion on HSN. I sincerely thank you for the gift of your time. Until then...