Craft Crush #6: Julie Schneider

24 Jun Craft Crush #6: Julie Schneider

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As the Craftivist Collective we love to showcase fellow craft-lovers who inspire us to keep crafting, teach us new craft skills & new ways of thinking and challenge us in how craft can be done, seen & have a positive mark on the world. These people keep me and the Craftivist Collective moving forward and growing and basically I have a big Craft Crush on them for that reason & want to celebrate their crafty brilliance with you so you can be inspired by them too.

Craft Crush #6 is…. Julie Schneider!

I met Julie recently in the awesome Etsy HQ in Dumbo NYC. Julie works in the Community Team at Etsy supporting the Etsy-family of sellers. Julie invited me to the Eatsy at Etsy lunch (get it? I love a good pun!) whilst I was in NYC and I have to say I was a bit nervous- Etsy is such an amazing organisation & Julie has a big job supporting its sellers so she could have been soooo arrogant and not invite little me in at all. But she was lovely, a bit quiet & what shines out of her is the pride she has in her job to support sellers like herself (she is an Etsy seller too- of course!) & her love for making & writing. Plus she is a seriously good photographer but she was too humble to acknowledge that. I loved that she won an Etsy staff Christmas Party award for her homemade owl outfit too hehee. We talked about how Etsy has helped thousands of sellers improve their products, business skills & how many of them have not gone part time in their job or are full time sellers. I love knowing that Julie is in the world quietly supporting, advising (she is know as the wise owl in the Etsy team), connecting & encouraging individuals & communities to use their skills & passions to create beautiful things for our world to beautify it & to bring joy to buyers and gift-recievers – Julie really does practicing what she preaches. It was an honour to meet Julie & I hope to meet her again someday. I’ve loved reading her answers below and I hope you do too. 

Julie Schneider our Craft Crush #6!

Julie Schneider our Craft Crush #6!

Name

Julie Schneider, a.k.a Your Secret Admiral
 
Website:
 
 
What do you do?
I’m a Brooklyn-based artist, maker, teacher, punster, writer, amateur armwrestler, and the creative community programs lead for Etsy.com. I make I teach craft classes around New York (and beyond), write DIY tutorials, create a mix of art and illustrations, and sell handmade bookshandprinted cards, and papercuts.
What are your first memories of crafting?
I am a lifelong maker, and even as a kid was always knotting up a friendship bracelet, making some sweet bookmarks on my bead loom, embroidering pillow, sewing clothes for my dolls, weaving potholders, drawing floor plans for my dream house, writing and illustrating stories, or crafting eye-catching signs for lucrative summer lemonade stands. One early project that I always remember making was for an assignment in 3rd grade during our Tennessee history unit. Amid a line-up of polished projects clearly made with copious parental help, I marched in with a flatboat made of pretzels cemented together with peanut butter.
One of Julie's cards she makes and sells on Etsy

One of Julie’s cards she makes and sells on Etsy

What inspires you?
I feel like inspiration can come from the most unexpected places. Sometimes I find it out on a walk around New York or a new city (or countryside), at the library, in a nook at an architectural salvage store, at a museum, in a book, on the sidewalk, out in the sunshine, sprouting from a crack in the sidewalk, in a field, from a dream, over a delicious homemade meal with friends and new acquaintances, in an aisle at the hardware store or a craft shop or a bookshop, looking at old hand-painted signs, browsing at a thrift shop, hiking in the woods, on an international travel adventure, sipping tea at home on a rainy day.
 

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Who do you have a craft crush on?
Oh so many! But here are a few: Candace HicksAnn WoodGarth JohnsonIndia Flint, Kitiya PalaskasLisa Congdon, my ever-crafty mother, and many more. (I’m often pinning the work of my craft crushes on my Pinterest boards too.)
What three things could you not live with out?
Good pens, good friends, good ice cream.

studio

How has craft been a positive influence for you and your community?
I have always found craft to be a great means to meet people and make new friends, and it has really been central for me for finding my people and crafting a community in all the places I have lived. It’s such a social, sharable activity that I think is a key ingredient for a dimensional, creative, resourceful life. In high school I started my first knitting group, and it really took off unexpectedly well. All sorts of people from across the spectrum of our diverse high school joined the group, and would be sitting in class knitting. I even remember skipping class one day to to help the quarterback of our state championship winning football team with his knitting! 
Etsy DIY merit badges

Etsy DIY merit badges

For the 4th annual Etsy Craft Party, we picked “Craft for Community” as the theme to encourage participants to use their collective creative powers for the good of their hometowns.There are over 500 locations (!) hosting Craft Parties this year on June 20, and I am loving seeing all the interpretations of this theme, from groups getting together to make toys for the Boston Children’s Hospital (here) to making pet collars for rescued dogs in Chicago (here).

8207028855_76d79fef98_cIf you could change one things about the world what would it be?
I would equalize the distribution of wealth, power, and resources. Also, more bike lanes and longer weekends and teleportation, please. :)
 
Have you got any words of encouragement for our readers about the power of crafts?
The power is literally in your hands. You can use your own two hands to improve your life or someone else’s. You don’t have to wait for the right moment or till you have a special certificate either. You can find ways to use craft to improve, empower, subvert, beautify, unite, and connect right now. That’s real power! Now, what are you waiting for?
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Check out Julie’s Etsy shop and her awesome blogs as an Etsy staff member to help fellow Etsy Shop sellers :)  

1Comment
  • david
    Posted at 06:39h, 28 June Reply

    Great post, keep up with the hard work, you

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