Welcome Sew Adorkable Blog Hop Book Tour readers!! We are so thrilled to be a part of this fab tour and I (Erin at Pellon) am personally super excited about this book! Sew Adorkable is the quirky brainchild of artist/designer/author/maker Samarra Khaja, who just happens to also be a Pellon Project Designer.
Samarra never fails to charm with her style and her wit and this book is a prime example. She has created an irresistible line-up of completely fabulous projects. From the TRAWRzers! (check Lindsay’s rendition here) to the Teacher Tool Belt, the Typewriter Tissue Box Cover to the Odd Socks Quilt, this one has a little something that will speak to the inner geek in all of us.
To get a bit more background and learn about Samarra’s thought process behind bringing this one to life, we went straight to the source.
Pellon: Samarra! Welcome:). Any chance you’d like to tell our readers a little more about yourself and how you came into this whole fabulous world of sewing?
Samarra: I went to the Talented & Gifted Magnet High School, a geek-tastic college prep school, solidifying my position in life as a card-carrying nerd and goofball. I’ve also been a lifelong creative person and maker of things. My fine arts degree in printmaking, drawing and photography (along with a minor in Medieval Studies, cuz nerd’s gonna nerd) morphed into working as a graphic designer for many years and that subsequently evolved into including surface and textile design and voila, here we are with my new sewing book!
P: You had me at Adorkable;). Seriously though… how did you come to the book title and how does it represent you and your crafty persona?
S: Hahaha, how does it not represent me, is more like it! My publisher’s Creative Director, Gailen, used the term ‘adorkable’ first to describe my point of view (maybe even me, hahaha) and the universal theme behind my projects and the word stuck all the way to the end! YAY!
P: Each project in the book features a quirky mash-up of finished project photography and your awesome illustrations. How did that all come to be? Did you always know that the Octopus was destined to wear the Teacher Tool Belt and that the hedgehog would peek out of the shower, or did the illustrations take inspiration from the final project images?
S: My idea to overlay photography with my illustrations was a solid concept from the beginning. The specifics didn’t come about until I saw the final photographs and played around with them. I had a two-part goal for the final look: to keep the images open and universally welcoming to a wide range of folks (by not depicting any specific people/models in them) and to also add an additional layer of other-worldliness to the book to help push people into feeling as creatively inspired as possible.
P: I’m sure there will be a handful of readers who feel the same way that I do… these projects seem almost like they were made just for me. I mean The Bee’s Knees Patch and TRAWRzers!? Did the projects or the titles come first? I’d love to hear a little more about your process.
S: I’m fairly concept driven with all my work, so the projects typically come first in a seed of an idea and then shortly thereafter the punny landslide begins and I start sorting through all the possible clever layering I can crowbar into a single idea. It’s really fun when it all falls into place!
P: I adore the layout of the book — each project gives the same layout: Fun Facts, What You’ll Need, Go Time!, All Together Now, Almost Done! & Ta-Dah! It sets readers up for a perfect sense of satisfaction with each project. Did you stumble upon this snazzy sequence for one project and decide it should be followed for all, or did you have the idea before even getting started?
S: After taking a first pass at a few of the projects, I recognized the rhythm I wanted and because I’m a freak for consistency, made it the standard structure for the whole book.
P: What was your favorite part about putting this book together?
S: Hands down, drawing over the photos. Deciding what characters got to live on each page was incredibly enjoyable and I had fun picking a wide range of creatures, real and otherwise and housing them all together in one happy place.
P: What would you like our readers to know about how this book will change their lives?
S: I’m not an especially frilly girly-girl and am always looking for clever things that make a statement beyond just being pretty. With that in mind, this book fills a need I see in the sewing market, specifically catering to people like me, who want projects that are quirky, offbeat, humorous and downright fun and dorky. With added ridiculous humor and a lighthearted approach, my aim is to also disarm any hesitant people who may feel like crafting outsiders and let them know they’re welcome to join in and make, make, make!
P: Other than being a super fabulous designer, maker and author, you’re also a graphic designer, fabric designer and illustrator. First of all — WOW, you’re kind of awesome! Second, how do you feel they are all connected? Are you drawn to one particular area over another?
S: It’s that whole concept-driven mindset I mentioned before; I love puzzle-solving like it’s nobody’s business, making things I haven’t seen before and putting a whole new spin and twist on things. So under that umbrella, and regardless of specific medium, I’m always trying to create the unexpected from the expected. I think that’s what connects everything I do. I love any chance to share my creative perspective on things, so if it’s through my illustration, fabric designs, or craft concepts, I’m as happy as a lark. And humor, if it can be done with humor, all the better!
Looking to grab a copy of your own? Head on over to C&T Publishing to snag your hard copy or your ebook.
Just because we love giveaways so much, we’re doing another one!! One lucky winner will win:
1 pkg of Pellon® 805 Wonder-Under
1 throw-sized pkg of Pellon® Nature’s Touch® 100% Natural Cotton Batting
1 yard of Pellon® FF78F1 Flex-Foam™ 1-Sided Fusible
AND 1 copy of Sew Adorkable by Samarra Khaja!
To enter-to-win, simply leave a comment below telling us which fabulous project pictured is the first must-make project on our list. 1 bonus entry (please leave a separate comment) for a fun, adorkable, sewing story that you’d like to share!! :) (2 total entries per person!!)
One book per winner. Open to US & Canada residents only. US residents will receive a hard copy of the book. Canada residents will receive a promo code to purchase the ebook version free of charge. Giveaway is open until 11:59pm on Monday, October 26 (the last day of the blog tour!). Good luck:)
We’re still in the beginning stages of this fabulous tour! Make sure to click through to check out already published posts and keep an eye out for all the fabulous posts coming up! So much Adorkable goodness;).
09/14/15: C&T/Stash Books
09/16/15: Generation Q Magazine
09/18/15: Sew Timeless
09/21/15: The Fire Science Blog
09/23/15: Art School DropOut
09/25/15: Craft Buds
09/30/15: Crafty Planner
10/02/15: Modern Handcraft
10/05/15: Imagine Gnats
10/07/15: May Chappell
10/09/15: Nancy Zieman
10/16/15: Sew Sweetness
10/23/15: Schmancy Toys
10/26/15: Samarra Khaja
Thanks so much for stopping by to hang with us today!! Enjoy the rest of the tour!