September DIY + Business Book Club + Giveaway – 2015

September DIY and Business Book Club from Dear Handmade LifeI was talking to a friend today and when she mentioned that she might be moving away from the West Coast one of the reasons she cited was that she really missed living somewhere where there are seasons. Even though I’ve never lived out of California I still appreciate the seasons. Maybe I don’t spend my winters shoveling snow from my driveway or my falls watching the landscape turn bright yellow and orange as the leaves change but I still feel like I have some sense of the seasons in California.

The hardest season for me to let go of is the summer. There’s something about the summer that makes my guilty feelings about relaxing and not checking things off my to-do list lessen (a bit). There’s this urgency to appreciate the hot weather while it’s here and afternoons spent reading or working in my sketchbook at the river, beach or poolside feel important. Sure I could sit in my living room and read but for some reason when I do it outside, near a body of water it feels better and somehow more substantial.

Now, with summer coming to an end (BOOOO!!!) and fall just around the corner I’m working hard to bring a bit of reading, relaxing and making time into my fall routine. I need to start thinking of every season the way I think about summer. I need to bring that urgency of the summer to every season because (like summer) none of the seasons last forever.

This fall I’m making a serious effort not just to read BUT also to make. Since I can’t commit to a #yearofmaking project like some of my friends have I’ve signed up for a pottery class at my local arts center. Sadly, this is the third time I’ve signed up for a pottery class. The first two times I went to a few sessions before my long to-do list of work commitments got the best of me and I traded pottery night for getting a few more work-related things done. This fall I refuse to let that happen!

If (like me) you can’t commit to a whole #yearofmaking then join me in a #fallofmaking! Pick a frequency that fits your schedule and that you think you can stick with without beating yourself for not making something. If you’re ambitious feel free to commit to something once a day but if like me you know you just won’t be able to do that, commit to once a week or even once a month. It doesn’t just have to be something crafty. Any kind of making will do… making a cake or dinner for your family, planting a flower, doing a craft, making an amazing margarita or even making a moment (committing to be present and watching a sunset or appreciating a ladybug that landed on your keyboard as your are typing-which just happened to me).

The purpose of this is to enjoy making… NOT to have it be a chore.

To get you started with your #fallofmaking we have five awesome books to share in the Dear Handmade Life DIY + Business Book Club this month. To make it even better we’re giving four of these books away.

-Nicole S.

To enter the contest:

If you want to win four of these books: The Paper Playhouse by Katrina Rodabaugh, The Sweater Shop by Crispina ffrench, Knit It by Lisa Leapman, and Gertie Sews Vintage Casual by Gretchen Hirsch, just leave a comment on this post telling us about what you want to make this fall. Post your comment by September 10th at midnight to be entered to win. Make sure to include your email address so we can get your address and ship you some lovely things to read.

The contest is now closed. Congrats to Maria E!!!

June DIY and business book club on Dear Handmade Life IMG_3802 IMG_3795 June DIY and business book club on Dear Handmade Life


  1. As a librarian that’s last day of work is September 30, I plan to make everything I haven’t had time to the last 9 years. Especially excited to learn how to loom weave and doing book art projects.

  2. I plan to finally create new clothes out of all the sweaters & old wool socks I’ve been saving – I’ve got my eyes on “the sweater chop shop”! ? ?

  3. I want to make clothing and purses using different cultural outfits especially vintage! Also want to make furniture using vintage items. I am doing a lot of wood carving as well and would like to do things with wood and paper!

  4. I’m planning to make time for selfish sewing this fall. At least one dress- it could be a rectangular smock for all I care. I just want to sit and see for myself.

  5. Making hoodies + hand warmers out of recycled cashmere + soft wool sweaters. Trying out a new dress pattern is a Fall tradition of mine and will sew a versatile navy knit dress that will pair well with some of my vintage cashmere sweater finds. A huge goal is to learn Photoshop and other fun stuff on

  6. This fall I want to finish some embroidery pieces I’ve been working on and make some handbound books to give as Christmas gifts. I also want to make myself a couple of comfy warm skirts for winter!

  7. This fall I plan to make time to finish an online art class I started in July!!! I have really enjoyed the lessons when I get the chance to work on them but have neglected to make “my time” a priority. So this fall I will be painting. 🙂

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