First up today we have a post from Stahl’s about their CutUps – clip art that you can buy for your vinyl cutter. Some of us aren’t great at creating our own art (raises my hand) or sometimes can’t think of what to create. This collection offers over 1200 designs suitable for heat applied graphics, so you’ll always have art available and ready for use.
Second at bat we have a post from Bonnie Landsberger, which celebrates the 25 anniversary of Stitches Magazine by telling a bit of Bonnie’s history. I find stories about how people started out to be fascinating and this one is a good one. Plus, this post highlights how much help and advice Stitches Magazine imparts to the embroidery community. Lovely read, as usual.
Third, those of us who are affiliated with Stitches in some way have been talking a lot about the Stitches Golden Needle Awards recently. We definitely want to encourage everyone to enter their work. If you’re wondering how the Awards are judged, Erich Campbell, who has been a judge for the competition, provides some insight into the process in his latest blog post. It’s definitely worth a read if you are considering entering.
Fourth on the docket we have a post from Nimah at Urban Threads, writing on the Designs in Machine Embroidery blog. Her subject is embroidering clothes for men that don’t feature fish, deer or golf balls. Now, let me be clear, there’s nothing wrong with fish, deer or golf balls, but there are also a lot of other options for embroidering men’s clothing and some of them are very cool. If you do, or would like to do, a lot of embroidering clothing for men, this post is a must read.
Fifth on the list is a post from Brass Tack Thinking that deals with the subject of when you should offer your expertise and knowledge for free. I’m sure this is a question that most of us have encountered at one time or another, whether it’s an expert embroiderer helping a novice embroiderer figure out a problem, or a marketer giving someone advice on pumping up their Facebook page. The answer, at least in this post, is that working for free has to be strategic, and you have to consider what benefits will accrue before you make the decision about whether or not to let someone pick your brain.
Finally, we have a post from Six Pixels of Separation which discusses the reasons you should and shouldn’t blog. I love this post, mostly because of what it says about why you should blog (really) and for what it says about the dirty truth of blogging, which is that it’s not easy and that building a compelling voice and an audience takes a lot of work and dedication. A blog can be a great communication tool for any business, but it’s also work. If you’re thinking of starting a blog, read this post, and then give it some more thought.
And, as a P.S. today, I have a book recommendation for you. Occasionally, in the Round-Up, I’ve linked to posts from a blog called The Bloggess. The author of that blog, Jenny Lawson, now has a book out. I bought the book last week and I can tell you it’s hilarious. If you like the blog, you’ll love this book. There were places in the book that made me laugh so hard I cried. It’s the perfect summer read, and I highly recommend it.