Announcing the Revolution Craft Style Project!

cobberson revolution craft style project

What is the Revolution Craft Style Project?
Revolution Craft Style is a project I came up with as a way to create social change through craft.  I envision it as a way to both raise money for causes important to me as well as encourage more people to really embrace knitting, crocheting, and other hand crafts.  My Etsy shop will sell knitting and crocheting related items with a portion of the profits being donated to charity.  My goal for the project is to eventually have a collective of other hand craft designers who also believe in donating a portion of their profits to support their favorite causes.

Where did the name Revolution Craft Style come from?
The name is a play on Revolution Girl Style Now, which was the first album by 90’s riot grrrl band, Bikini Kill Kathleen Hanna is a huge inspiration for me, both for her music and her activism.

How did this start?
Two years ago, I created a printable gift tag for handknits and offered it as a free download here.  Within days the tag had made its way to Pinterest and Reddit and went viral.  I decided to do a crochet version of the tag, and a while later, a handspun version.  Every few months, the tags go viral again as people gift their handmade items for different holidays. Now that the number of page views for the tags is over 100,000, I realized that I should turn the tags into a way to generate money for charity.

In addition to the potential for raising money to causes I support, every time I see a spike in interest for the gift tags. I’m thrilled to know that people are not only enjoying my designs, but that they’re MAKING gifts. 

What’s the big deal about making gifts?

There are a few reasons I really love a hand knitted gift:
  • It’s easy to order something from Amazon or pick up something at Target, but to construct a garment/ blanket/ etc from yarn and two needles takes a lot of effort.  You have to really WANT to finish the gift, because it takes so much time and work.
  • It’s customized for the recipient.  No limits on color or details to make something really personal.
  • The item often becomes an heirloom.  How many people would pass down a stroller blanket from generation to generation if it weren’t hand knitted by Aunt Mary?
  • The look on the faces of both the recipient and the giver when the gift is opened.  The handmade gifts are always held up to a room of oohs and ahhs at a shower or Christmas party, while the crafter beams with pride.
  • The act of knitting not only results in an awesome and unique item, but several studies have shown the benefits to your health.  Knitting can help ease anxiety, depression, stress, and chronic pain, as well as promote happiness and brain health.  
  • You know who did the work, and what the materials are made from.  No sweatshops involved.
  • Knitting/ crocheting/ sewing are great practical skills to know.  Mend and make do!  Save money on buying new clothes when you create garments or repair existing ones.

How will the charity part of this project work?

I have decided that instead of offering the original three gift tags as a free download, I am going to start offering them for $3 each, with 100% of the profits being donated to charity.  Because the tags were originally offered for free, I didn’t feel right about keeping any money generated by them.  If you’re not down with paying for the tags, I’ll have a link to Google Drive where you can still access them for free, but I really hope you’ll choose the charity version! There will also be new items added to the shop, and 20% of the profits from those new items will be donated to charity. 

What charities will benefit from Revolution Craft Style?

The charities I’m currently supporting are Girls, Inc. and Code in the Schools. I hope to add others to my list as the project grows.

I’m going for social change though craft and I’m excited to see what we can accomplish with Revolution Craft Style.  I hope you’ll join me!


Halloween 2015: DIY Rosie the Riveter

cobberson rosie the riveter costume
Yes, I show up at costume parties bringing my own backdrop.  That's normal, right?

I loved the way my Rosie the Riveter costume came out this year, plus it was super easy, comfortable, and inexpensive.  I think it was under $10.  All I used was a dollar store bandana, red lipstick, big piece of foam core, paint, and a piece of white card stock.

Call me crazy, but it never crossed my mind to not make the yellow and blue background part of my costume. The whole image is so bold and iconic, I would've just been a person wearing a bandana without it.  Pro tip:  If you're like me and super particular about making your letters perfect, you can try this trick.

cobberson picmonkey tutorial

  1. Use PicMonkey or similar photo editing program to type up your tex
  2. Mirror the text so when you print it out, it will be backwards (in Picmonkey, the mirror buttons are under the Rotate options)
  3. Print on draft mode so the letters are as light as possible
  4. Cut out, turn around so the letters are facing the correct way, and glue down with ModPodge.
  5. Now you have crisp letters without having to stencil or paint anything.  Ideal for last minute costume prep!
My favorite part about this costume is that little kids have no idea who Rosie the Riveter is, so you can give them a little history lesson.  You'll be pleasantly surprised at how interested they are  :)

What did you dress up as this year?


Halloween themed birthday party success!

I know we've all seen that hilarious Pinterest fails meme (the one with the hedgehog cake wearing dentures cracks me up EVERY SINGLE TIME), but I found two foolproof dessert pins for your Halloween party.

My younger son requested a Halloween themed birthday party this year, which if you can convince your kid to do this, DO IT.  Seriously.  It was the easiest party ever to find cute and easy (and cheap!) snacks/ plates/ etc.  Every year, when I make birthday cakes for the guys, I try to make something that will make their face light up when I see it.  It gets me super excited.  So this year, when my little one said he wanted his cake to have a ghost and Frankenstein, I was a little stumped on how to combine these two things on one cake in an interesting way.

First I thought maybe I'll make a little Halloween gingerbread house and stick that on top of the cake and a lollipop ghost.  But Frank?  Kinda threw a wrench into things.  I'm no Cake Boss, so I wasn't exactly going to pull out my industrial cake tools and carve up an edible Frankenstein.  Instead I did the obvious thing.  I turned to Pinterest.

I found this cake idea from Betty Crocker and liked the look of it.  I needed a big sheet cake, so I ordered just a plain solid green cake from Costco.  PS, wow, do they try to talk you out of ordering a cake like this, presumably because if you don't decorate it, it looks really silly and they don't want you to tell everyone it's a Costco cake.  The Betty Crocker cake uses licorice to add the black detailing, but I'm not a licorice fan at all, so I used two squeeze tubes of Wilton black icing (which was half the price at Target, btw).  The star tip was perfect for the hair, and the line tip was ok but not ideal for the rest of the face.   There were a LOT of adjustments using toothpicks to get clean lines. I also picked up a tube of the black gel, but it was way too runny for me to draw the face on, so I didn't use it.

cobberson halloween frankenstein cake

Since I also needed some kind of ghost dessert, I found this super cute graveyard pudding cup idea from Party Pinching that was a big hit.  There's zero work needed - you just buy Peeps in ghost or tombstone shapes, crumble up some chocolate cookies, stick both in the cup with a candy corn pumpkin, and you're done.

cobberson halloween theme party treats

Super cute, fast, and the kids loved them.  Most importantly, my son thought both were awesome and he had a great time at his party.  Pinterest win!

What kind of party ideas have you found on Pinterest?  How did they turn out?
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