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My Book: A Well-Crafted Home!

I’m so excited that today my book, A Well-Crafted Home: Inspiration and 60 Projects for Personalizing Your Space, officially launches! All 224 pages are packed with beautiful images and tons of inspiration - and did I mention, SIXTY projects!

When my husband and I moved to New York ten years ago, we had a minimal budget to furnish our apartment. Seeking a way to add unique touches to our space that would stand the test of time, I turned to DIY projects that were well-designed, practical, and made with good-quality materialsA Well-Crafted Home is an inspirational jumping-off point for anyone looking to build an environment that feels special and authentic. 

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Equal parts inspiration and DIY guide the book starts with a primer that takes you through the new rules of design, how to get started, and how to stock the perfect DIY toolkit. We then dive into the home and go room by room, starting with the entryway, and talk about how to make each space uniquely yours.  

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We complete the book with a vast section of techniques and skills that you can apply to a host of other projects as well as the ones featured in the book: Natural dyeing, how to cut wood, working with leather, antiquing mirrors, and more! 

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I believe in making things you love. Making things of quality that you want to keep for many years to come and even pass them down to future generations. I want you to love the space you're in and feel empowered to transform it with your own two hands. This book has been such a joy to write and a true labor of love. Thank you to those who pre-ordered the book, are stocking it in your shop, and those who have been championing me through the process. I am so grateful!

A huge thank you to my publisher Clarkson Potter, my editor Angelin Borsics who made me sound like a pro, Julia Wade who took all the gorgeous photographs for the book, Tate Obayashi who drew the sweetest illustrations, and to all the homeowners who let me use your spaces; Joseph and Rachel Bradley, Lisa and Justin Hauenstein, Steven Burke and Randy Campbell. It takes a serious team to write and publish a book - please make sure to check out the acknowledgements page because I got to work with some really awesome people and I couldn't have done it without any of them!

And lastly, I would LOVE to see your copies out in the world, in your hands, and in use - please share and tag #AWellCraftedHome. My hope is that you come back to the book time and time again. 

Happy making,
Janet

WHERE TO GET YOUR COPY

 


Well-Crafted Home Book Sneak Peek

It's been a long time in the making but I am utterly thrilled to share a brand new resource with you today. My latest book, AWell-Crafted Home, is designed to help you unlock the potential within your home and give you the confidence to create lasting pieces in your own personal style. I can't believe its officially out in less than 2 months! I was shipped the first copies, hot off the press from my editor, and this book is truly beautiful. A dream come true for me.

Now, legally, I can't give too much away, but I couldn't resist showing you a couple gorgeous images from the book. I called on my dear friend (who I met when she was my wedding photographer) to shoot the book with me and she knocked it out of the park - say hello to Julia Wade. We drove all around North and South Carolina with a minivan full of props and projects, on the lookout for the perfect homes to shoot. We found some amazing home owners who let us come in and deconstruct their spaces (omg that bathroom below is heart-stopping, amiright), but more on that at a later time....

For now feast your eyes on just a few of the 60 projects that will be covered in the book. I tried to pick a favorite project but I can't! Just so you know, I practice what I preach - ALL of the projects in this book are currently in use at our home. The beaded light fixture below is hanging up in my daughters room. All the throw pillows have graced our sofa since we shot the final images and the hammock has been swinging in our backyard all summer. I believe in making things you love. Making things of quality that you want to keep for many years to come and even pass them down to future generations. I want you to love the space you're in and feel empowered to transform it with your own two hands. I hope you'll pick up a copy of this book and keep me in the loop on what you've made! 

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janet crowther a well-crafted home book open
 

Pre-order your copy HERE before it's released on September 26th. Thanks so much to those of you who have already ordered the book, or placed an order for your friends and family. I've been working on this project for over two years and can't wait to hear what you think. 

 

WHERE TO GET YOUR COPY


Let's Bundle-Dye with Flowers!

The flowers in North Carolina are beautiful from Spring through Summer! I can't resist grabbing a pair of gardening clippers and pulling my car over on every side street to snatch a few blooming branches. I've dye tested all sorts of buds this summer - from daffodils and cherry blossoms to camellias and crepe myrtle blossoms - but my favorite color combination so far is from a dyed bundle of camellia flowers. The tonal pinks and purples, mixed with the yellow stamen, make for a winning combination. I plucked these flowers in Spring and threw them in a ziplock freezer bag and kept them frozen until I was ready for this project. You can do the same with any flowers that are currently available in your region. This tutorial will show you how to naturally dye fabric yardage. I'll link out to a few of my favorite ideas for what to do with your freshly dyed linen below. Grab your shears and get to know your neighbors or hop on over to your local flower district and pick up a few stems for testing. Since camellia buds are mostly out of season, test other options like rose petals, hibiscus, pansies, violets, begonias, and sunflowers. 

Tools & Materials:

Tip: I froze my petals in a ziplock bag because I wasn't quite ready to dye at the time of picking.Sometimes freezing flowers beforehand will help yield stronger dye colors, but sometimes not. As always, test first before dyeing a large project.
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Steps:

1. Soak your fabric in a bucket of 3 parts water, 1 part vinegar. Wring it out and lay it on a flat surface.

2. Sprinkle the petals and flower buds over the entire fabric surface.

3. Once you like the arrangement of flowers start rolling up the fabric. Keep the fabric taut as you roll from one end to the other.  I don't always love the effect of an exact print which can happen with bundle-dyeing. A looser bundle will help disperse the colors more to provide an ombre effect. 

4. You can roll it in the opposite direction as well to make the bundle smaller to fit completely in your pot. If you are only dyeing a yard of fabric this step is probably unnecessary.

5. Secure the bundle tightly with twine.

6. You can steam or boil the bundle. I find that steaming works best but if you don't have a steam pot just go ahead and fill your steel pot with enough water to cover the fabric, bring to a boil, stir occasionally and let it sit in the boiling water for an hour. If you are steaming, let it steam for 1.5 to 2 hours. Make sure to keep an eye on it and never leave a pot on the stove unattended. Be mindful whether you are boiling or steaming to always make sure there is ample water in your pot.

7. Remove the bundle and let it cool overnight. Once cool remove the twine and unwind the bundle removing all the plant matter.

8. Hang the fabric to dry. Once completely dry, press the fabric with an iron to seal in the color. Hand wash the fabric in cool water with pH free detergent and hang to dry.

 

You can use the fabric many ways. I stitched all my edges and hung it on the wall as a banner. Here are a few more suggestions:

Turn into easy throw pillows
Use for furoshiki wrapping cloths
Sew a couple napkins for your dinner guests
Make the cutest little shoe bag I've ever seen, these could also double as jewelry bags or farmers market bags