Thursday, April 20, 2017

Crafter in The Spotlight 46 - Itsy Bitsy

Thursday is here again. It’s time to introduce our ‘Crafter in the Spotlight’. This week the focus is on Akanksha Sharma from the Pink city, Jaipur but now she lives in Bangalore.  The relation between Akanksha and craft goes a long way. The colourful handicrafts of Rajasthan were her first attraction towards craft and later in life she chose to pursue craft as a career.

Like most crafters Akanksha likes experimenting with different kinds of craft. Playing around with clay and making new things is one of her favourites.

How did Akanksha get into crafting, what inspires her, what are her tips for fellow crafters, her favourite quote, how would she contribute to the crafting world if she had magical powers? Read answers to all these questions, discover more about her interesting journey and catch a glimpse of a step by step project by Akanksha in this interview. Don't forget to leave your comments for her.

Rashmi Closepet, MD, Itsy Bitsy: Tell us a bit about yourself & your background?
Akanksha Sharma: Hi, I am Akanksha. I am born and brought up in Jaipur. Now, I live in Bangalore with my husband. I am an engineer but I have always been interested in art and craft. After finishing my engineering, I started working in an IT firm but my heart remained with art. After trying hard to juggle my time between work and hobby for five years, I decided to pursue craft as a career. I am now running a small venture of making hand crafted goodies.

RC:How did you get into crafting?
AS:Growing up in Rajasthan, I used to find myself attracted to the colorful handicraft that I saw everywhere around me. I think that is where the fascination started. I started sketching and coloring in school and used to love the art class as a kid. In my school days, I participated in many competitions and loved playing with colors and got great satisfaction when people liked my craft. This became a lifelong passion. I started finding it difficult to grab time for this passion when I started working. I finally decided to take up craft as a career in May 2016.

RC:What is your favorite type of craft?
AS:I have fallen in love with clay modeling these days. I like making fridge magnets,name plates, photo frames and décor items with clay. I also love glass painting and decoupage.I always try to combine these elements together to create something unique.

RC:What are your favorite products at Itsy Bitsy?
AS:I love jute twine, burlap, handmade paper, polymer clay, flower embellishments and decoupage napkins that I can find at Itsy Bitsy. I also love the sculpting tools that are so difficult to find elsewhere.

RC:If you had magic powers, how would you contribute to the Crafting world?
AS:I think every crafter already has magic powers in his/her hands and creativity. We can contribute by learning and sharing our knowledge.

RC: Your prized possession in your craft stash from Itsy Bitsy?
AS: Handmade jute sheets and sculpting tools.

RC:How would you describe your style of crafting?
AS: I tend to like colorful stuff. My style is experimental. I like to try and learn new things by experimenting.

RC: How do you organize your time for crafting?
AS:I spend most of my time crafting and try to manage all my other responsibilities around it.

RC:Tips for people who want to craft
AS:You should put your heart into it without any inhibitions or fear. It is also important to share this passion with others as the appreciation acts as a huge motivation. Today, we can find lots of videos and blogs that help us learn. It is very important to find time for something you love and to keep doing it.

RC:Your all -time favourite quote?

AS:Be yourself, but your best self.

Here is a gorgeous project by Akanksha & step by step procedure:

Travel Themed Name Plate

Materials Required:

-         For Base: Wooden plank- MDF( 6 inches X 12 inches), Decoupage Glue (Mod Podge), Decoupage Brush, Decoupage Paper/ napkin, Sand paper

-         For Embellishments- Polymer Clay, Oil Paint, Acrylic Paint


For base:

1. Prepare surface: Make sure the MDF surface and free of dust to get a smooth finish.
2. Select the Decoupage Paper according to the theme.

3. Glue the paper using Mod Podge and sponge brush, smooth out any wrinkles and wipe away any excess glue.

For Embellishments:
Select the embellishments you want to make, based on your theme.

1.  Mix oil paint of different colors with clay balls.
2.   Use clay balls of different colours, sculpting tools and your creative mind to make the embellishments- Figurines, Taj Mahal, Camera, Burger, Chocolates, Books, Wine Glasses, Singapore Lion
3.   Use acrylic paints, dotting and sculpting tools for finish.
4.   Bake the embellishments as per instructions on polymer clay packet.

5.   Stick them on the base using Fevicol as per required design .
6.   Write the names with air dry clay.
7.   Let it dry and paint the letters with acrylic colours.
8.   Varnish the name plate once and dry again. Varnish adds gloss and also enhances life of the creation.

You are done! Happy Crafting!

Here are a couple of  Akanksha's other awesome creations:

1  Wall decor made with canvas board, air dry clay, polymer clay, oil colours, acrylic colours, clay modelling tools, paint brushes

Photo frame made with MDF base, guitar magnet, handmade flower, polymer clay, colours, jute sheets, twine, glass liner for message and more.

Nameplate made with MDF base, air dry clay, polymer clay, oil colours, acrylic colours, clay modelling tools, paint brushes.

Baby photo frame made with handmade yellow sheet, baby clay embellishments, polymer clay, clay modelling tools, paint brushes.

Many congrats Akanksha for being the CRAFTER IN THE SPOTLIGHT – ITSY BITSY!!

You will receive Rs.500/- Itsy Bitsy gift voucher 😊😊 & a Crafter in the Spotlight badge, which can be proudly displayed on the side bar of your blog and other platforms. Looking forward to many more creations, Happy Crafting!