Meet featured blogger Amanda Formaro (Crafts by Amanda) and get craft tutorials from her blog.
Amanda Formaro left the world of high finance to be a stay-at-home mom and explore the Internet biz. A professional blogger (she owns five of them!), Amanda is a contributing editor to several websites and print publications, sharing her crafts and recipes. Here we chat with her to learn more about her blog, Crafts by Amanda (craftsbyamanda.com).
CW: How did you become interested in crafts and what inspired you to start blogging?
Amanda: I loved crafting when I was little, and art was my favorite subject. There wasn’t time for it when I was working my way up the corporate ladder—but later, as an at-home mom, I picked it up again. I created a website focusing on kids’ crafts and became a contributing editor for other websites, including Disney’s Kaboose.com. For the past six years, I’ve been blogging (after selling my website)—and recharging my creative battery. My projects now appeal to adults too, and include holiday and home decor crafts, plus several using recycled materials.
CW: How has your blog changed since you started? What surprises, challenges or rewards has it brought you?
Amanda: It was a challenge going from webmaster to blogger mode. There’s a sense of community that comes with blogging. It’s been rewarding getting to know those who read my blog, follow me on Twitter and “like” me on Facebook. In my posts, I can be a real person and share things that I create.
CW: What kind of relationships do you have with your followers? What posts or subjects have proven most popular?
Amanda: My readers are outstanding. Their comments are encouraging, complimentary and uplifting. They are the reason I strive to come up with more and better projects.
My most popular posts include Burlap & Doily Luminaries that have been recreated for many weddings, a Duct Tape Wallet that a 12-year-old showed me how to make, and a Distressed Eat Sign that I made from recycled wood. It’s now hanging in my kitchen.
CW: How do you balance blogging with your family?
Amanda: It’s easier now that my kids are in school. I’m a shortcut kind of person, so I find quick, efficient ways to do things. That allows me to keep “office hours” and still have time to help with homework, attend sporting events and hang out with my family.
CW: What’s the most unusual item you’ve used in a recycling craft?
Amanda: That’d be my Jack-o’-lantern TV. I spray painted a worn-out TV orange and put a vinyl jack-o’-lantern face decal on the screen. When the TV is plugged in (but not connected to cable or satellite), it displays a snowy glowing picture behind the eerie face. Cute and spooky!
For more information about Amanda and her blog, visit her at Crafts By Amanda.