bookmaking station

It all started when a neighbor of mine (and by “neighbor” I mean someone five miles down the road and across the river from my house) taught my sisters and me how to crochet blankets.

I learned how to crochet other things, though they were mostly square objects like purses and scarves. Then came knitting, the slower cousin to crochet.

I dabbled in other things in middle school, like sewing, beading, scrapbooking, and embroidery.

All the while, though, I was conflicted.

Keep in mind, this was in my middle school days before I accepted my being genderqueer fully. So my boy voice was like “Crafts are too girly! Let’s drop this and watch some martial arts movies.”

But the girl voice was like, “But…things! I can make things! Not very well, but…things!”

So I quit crafting for a while and focused on drawing and painting, which were the only two crafts that kept my attention regardless of my boy voice or my girl voice.

Then I went to college and lived in the Arts Village Learning Community. And every other Thursday there was a Stitch N Bitch event hosted by a classmate of mine named Michael.

I never attended because I was almost always stuck in studio classes in that time slot, but knowing that Michael hosted the event challenged my boy voice. It’s like my girl voice said, “HA! Boys crochet too!”

I still didn’t craft for a few more years, though. I graduated college, worked my summer job, quit my summer job, moved, worked, moved again, made comics…

And then I took a day job working at Michael’s the craft store chain (I swear it’s not run by my former classmate of the same name). I was surrounded by crafts and ideas. My crafting side was beginning to emerge.

I accepted my being genderqueer, and my boy voice and my girl voice merged and became MY voice.

And my voice said, “Let’s make things!”

So I’ve been making things ever since.

My biggest hobbies now are crochet, T-shirt wrecking, bookmaking, and upcycling (or reusing something that would have been garbage and making it useful).

I am one of those people that has to keep their hands busy (for reasons I’ll explain in another blog post). That’s why I make three webcomics and make crafty things.

All of these crafts lets me take raw material and make something new with my own hands.

I can make tablet cases and Jayne hats out of yarn…

crochet tablet case

jayne hat selfie

I can turn a tea box into a note box….

note box

I can make my own journals…

handmade journal

I can make ALL THE THINGS!

handmade book Handmade_book_inside_binding

And it’s all a joy. It makes me happy to make things.

Of course, my biggest joy is making comics, but in regards to things I can make with my hands for just myself…I love crafts.

Plus, being eco-friendly is awesome, and making your own stuff and recycling it is the eco-friendliest.

What are your favorite hobbies? Do you also do crafts? Leave a comment below and we can exchange ideas!

Thanks for reading.