Getting Crafty with Grace Bonney of Design*Sponge!
Last night, the West Elm store in Fenway played host to Grace Bonney and her team from Design*Sponge as they made their second stop on a nationwide book tour for the newly published Design*Sponge at Home.
The event kicked off at 6pm with a craft workshop. Tables were set up in the back of the store for 25 guests. I was lucky enough to snag two tickets, so my husband and I got to play! We were the only two boys there, but whatevs. Grace said we looked cute. She taught the lesson herself based on the “Freezer Paper Monogrammed Handkerchief” DIY Project featured in the new book (page 220). Instead of hankies, participants each got to select a linen napkin on which to work their craft-magic. Grace and West Elm provided the napkins, as well as all of the other supplies: freezer paper with pre-printed designs, x-acto knives, fabric paint, brushes, etc.
I knew exactly what I wanted to do, so I got to work right away! Step one: Cut out design from the freezer paper to use as a stencil.
Step two: Decide where on the napkin you want your design, and then adhere the stencil by pressing it (shiny side down) with a hot iron. Step three: Paint over the stencil with a foam brush and using a stippling technique (Grace said this works best).
Step four: You may need to apply a few coats of the fabric paint to achieve your preferred color saturation, but once you’re done you can peel off the stencil to reveal your masterpiece!!!
It was a lot of fun. Grace was very sweet, making the rounds to each table, checking on everyone’s progress, and serving pink lemonade and sparking water. There was also an assortment of delicious cupcakes to enjoy while finishing up your craft project.
Grace then did a mini-signing for those of us who participated in the workshop. I finally got my hands on the Design*Sponge at Home book. It really is quite stunning. I was even able to steal a few moments and chat with Grace about Ampersand while we were having our picture taken. Swoon!!!
Afterwards, as the formal book signing got underway, there was plenty of time to mingle, peruse the merchandise, and goof around in the makeshift photo booth in the front of the store (photos to follow!). By the way, has anyone else noticed that West Elm has stepped up their design game? I feel like their look used to be very one note, and flipping through a catalog left me kinda bored. However, their recent stuff has been really nice in design, style, and colors.
All in all, it was a great night. I was able to get my craft on, hang out with pretty girls, and go shopping—life is good!