Friday, 14 December 2007

Interactive in my kitchen

I have been spending a lot of time this autumn in my kitchen, on my own while the house is empty, working on my mammoth Willowcrest dollshouse project. It could be a rather lonely affair, but in fact I have been keeping company with people from all over the world as I listen to their podcasts. Quite tedious tasks like painting 50 strips of wood, or sanding down 12 sets of window frames, pass quite enjoyably as I listen to friends in San Francisco discuss their yarn stash, or an Australian 'bloke' talking about his yarn dying experiments.

I enjoy the content of course, but as much as anything, it is delightful to listen to people who feel as passionately about their chosen pursuits as I do about mine. I don't really have that experience in my 'real' life. I don't have any close friends of my age who do any crafts at all, and although I have several older friends who do make things (the two I see regularly, who like to sew and dabble in dollshouses, are c. 65 and 85 years old respectively), it's not the same. So turning on the computer is like inviting a few talkative friends over to chat energetically with each other, while I sit quietly and work and enjoy listening. So here are a few of the online shows I listen to regularly:

Quilting- I don't know why, but there are virtually no quilting podcasts, which seems strange when there are hundreds of podcasts for knitters. Here are a couple I like.

Annie's Quilting Stash - A pattern designer and teacher, Annie seems to know a lot of people in the quilting world and does a lot of interviews and location visits. She is so enthusiastic about things, and asks some good interview questions. She also visits a lot of trade and quilting shows and reviews them.

Alex Anderson Quilt Connection - As the former host of Simply Quilts, Alex delivers a professional product, although she isn't podcasting as often now that she is co-hosting the online Quilt Show. A mixture of 'blog'-type catch-ups on her own life, and interviews with other notables in the quilting world.

Quilters News Network (QNN TV) - this isn't a podcast at all, but a site full of video-on-demand quilting shows. Recently they have moved to a subscription basis, but it is only $24 for a year so just a few dollars a month. This is well worth it to me, as we have no quilting programmes on TV here in the UK. So I really enjoy watching, or even just listening to, shows such as Quilt in a Day, Fons & Porter, Sewing with Nancy etc.

Knitting - the knitting world has just exploded with dozens, if not hundreds, of podcasts. Here are a few that I have tried and enjoyed:

Knit Picks Podcast - This podcast is so soothing and confidence-inspiring, like listening to a trusted newscaster who loves knitting. Professionally done and regularly published, combining a technical topic with book reviews, and with minimal 'advertising' despite the connection with the Knit Picks shop. I really like this one.

Lime 'n Violet - Although nominally about knitting, this fast-moving and possibly anarchic podcast is a conversation between two younger knitters which can veer wildly off the rails in many directions.

Stash & Burn - Again a conversation between two younger knitters, but calmer, and it makes me a bit jealous because I wish I had a friend like that who was as interested in craft things as I am. Jenny & Nicole have spent the year trying not to add to their yarn stash, with varying degrees of success. Much more on topic about knitting than Lime 'n Violet.

Sticks and String - A podcast by an Australian bloke who knits. Nuff said.

If you listen to a podcast that you think I might like - leave me a comment! My kitchen will thank you.


Sue Ann said...

Just thought you might want to know about and, two networks that are chalk full of video that is FREE for the viewers. Check it out! We would love to have you. Coming up soon is also for scrapbooking and for other crafts such as beading and painting.

Kieny said...

There is also a podcast about quilting with the name: Driven to quilt. It's from an American lady living in Germany. You can find it on iTunes.

Do you have problems too with downloading Annie Smith's podcasts? It was all right a few months ago but now I can't download any of her older podcasts. I wrote her an email but she doesn't answers back.

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