Crafter Profile: A college student and her crafty business

This week, I’ve decided to do something a little different. Instead of the normal how-to, I’ll be profiling one of my dear friends who runs her own crafting business. Kailee Yarbrough, 21-year-old elementary education major from Kingston Springs, Tenn., started her own business right in her dorm room. Sew Kreative Embroidery was founded by Kailee during her sophomore year at Lipscomb.

Her love of all things crafty began at a young age. Kailee began sewing in the third grade. She and one of her friends would buy fabric and hand-stitch pillows together. In middle school, she got her first sewing machine after attending a 4-H sewing class. From then on, she made clothing, quilts and numerous other projects. She liked experimenting with her sewing, always seeking out new things to try, which led her to monogramming.

“A monogram is typically someone’s personalized initials, Kailee said. “Embroidery is the actual stitching of patterns or designs.” Kailee has placed her monograms onto all sorts of mediums. She does T-shirts, sweatshirts, blankets, shorts, tank tops, onesies and kids apparel, bags, rain jackets and towels. In the future, she will have the capability to produce monogrammed vinyl stickers. “The blankets are probably some of my favorite things to do,” she said.

All of her work is displayed on her  Facebook and Instagram accounts in order to show future clients what she can do, and to show off the work she’s done for previous customers. Most of her business comes from word of mouth through her friends and family and through the Greek organizations on Lipscomb’s campus.

She hopes to continue Sew Kreative Embroidery beyond college but doesn’t plan to open up a physical shop any time soon. She would love to keep monogramming as something to do on the side while also pursuing her other passion of teaching.

The process of making a monogram is much more complicated than I originally thought. Kailee took the time to show me a few of the basics. It all begins on the computer where she chooses the font and size of the letters. Then, she inserts a USB and transfers the image of the three letters. The USB then goes into her monogram machine. The medium that is being monogrammed is pinned to the hoop, which is two oval-shaped pieces that snap together and hold the fabric in place. The hoop is then placed under the machine and lined up to be straight.

Once everything is ready, the machine can be turned on and starts to work its magic. The machine then tells her how long the process will take. Usually, she keeps a close eye on everything while it is going just to make sure that everything is working properly. Once it is done, she just unpins everything and has a beautiful new monogram!

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Did you like a profile instead of the normal tutorial? Do you have any questions for Kailee? Respond in the comments below!

How to make a unique yet simple wreath replacement

Today we will be taking a basic wooden letter and making it something special. These letters are available at most major craft stores for very little money, especially if you take advantage of the weekly coupons offered by these retailers. These letters are basic and boring, but they have the potential to be very chic. These look amazing on front doors as a summer alternative to a heavy wreath. They can be decorated to match any existing color scheme and the possibilities for personal flair are endless!

For this project you will need the wooden letter, acrylic craft paint in the color of your choosing, brushes, a ruler, a pencil, ribbon, hot glue and a paint pallet. This list seems long, I know, but it is actually a simple process.

The first step is to plan out what you’ll be doing. This project is completely customizable to your personal tastes. For my project, I decided to duplicate this chevron pattern. To do this on a shape that wasn’t perfectly rectangular, I made the squares for the chevron as if it was normal. I had to use my ruler to imagine where a line would be so I could get an appropriate angle sometimes, but other than that, it was the same as my previous chevron patterns that I made on canvases.

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Once you have drawn your boxes and lines and erased all the unnecessary parts, you can use your acrylic paint (one of your crafting essentials) to paint on your design. Remember to use multiple coats to achieve a rich-looking finish. Once your paint has dried, you can spray a clear sealant over the whole thing to make it more durable to weather conditions, or if this will be placed indoors you are done.

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Following painting, you simply need to cut your ribbon piece as long as you’d like. Think about how much of the ribbon you want to be able to see and how low you’d like your letter to hang. Once you’ve determined the length, cut your ribbon to the desired length and hot glue it or staple it with a staple gun onto the back of the letter.

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Now you have a special looking monogram that is uniquely yours! I hope you’ve enjoyed this project! What variations can you think of trying out? Would you rather do a letter for your first or last name? Let me know in the comments below!

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