Questions and Answers With the Chicks

It’s time for a little Q & A session here with the Crafting Chicks! If there’s anything you want to know from or about us, now is the time to ask! We know you have questions, because we get some great emails sent our way and we have a hard time getting them answered. Want to know what our favorite fonts are? Questions about past projects? Cameras? Software? Favorite books? Gardening questions?  The sky’s the limit. Just leave your question in the comments and we’ll respond there as well. Remember there are 5 of us, so if you get bombarded with opinions we apologize in advance!

ETA: We will reply to your questions within the comments section, so be sure to check back for all of our answers, or you can check the box to receive comment responses by email. :)

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Comments

    • Kirsten says

      This is Kirsten speaking….the others will answer as well, but I have a Cannon 5D Mark II. I LOVE LOVE it. It’s crisp, 21megapixel, and full-frame. I am also a professional photographer so that my was good excuse to splurge on that baby. It’s so worth it…but the 60D is also a great camera, a step up from the Rebel series, which is also good. It just depends what features you are looking for. Also, the 50mm 1.4 or 1.8 lens makes it good too. You can’t go wrong with that lens. :)

      • says

        I use a Canon Rebel XTi that I’ve had for about 4 1/2 years. I’ve been very happy with it but am honestly ready for an upgrade. :) I’m wanting to get the Canon 7D but don’t have the pennies for it quite yet!!! My favorite inexpensive lens is definitely the Canon 50mm 1.8. It is how I get the blurry background with the subject staying in focus.

        • says

          I’m still using my trusty Sony H2. It is 5 years old and still does everything I need it to! It’s a point and shoot with the option to shoot in manual, which I try to do most of the time. One of these days I’ll upgrade, but for now I’m happy with what I have!

  1. Kim says

    I don’t have a blog yet, but really enjoy your site and your wonderful ideas! I am wondering how the projects that I believe Kirsten has done (Mod-Podge Notebooks and Photos On Canvas) are done with the photos and mod podge. I tried the photos on canvas and using the mod podge and I couldn’t get my photo to stay on the canvas and it got all sticky and it was just a really bad mess. So, I am wondering if you use an actual real photo or a color copy of one. I love the ideas with this and so want to make one to look good just like yours! Thanks so much! Keep up all yall’s awesome and wonderful work and ideas!

    • Kirsten says

      It’s Kirsten again….I think the trick with Mod Podge is to use a **thin** layer on the canvas where the picture is going to go, then put the picture down. The more you put on, the more it will probably bow or not stay on. After that’s dry, just apply a thin layer over the top. Sometimes canvases are hard, but it’s definitely doable. Harder surfaces are better for sure. Maybe in the near future we will do a video on it…maybe ;). Good luck with that.

      • says

        Another trick is putting a thin layer on the canvas but also a thin layer on the back of the photo you are placing on the canvas. Then when it’s all dry do a thin layer on top of everything. The key is thin layers of Mod Podge.

        Also, I have found that color copies of photos tend to bleed or smudge (at least whenever I’ve tried using that). I usually go with an actual photo or scrapbook paper or even fabric works!

  2. Teresa says

    Hello Chicks! So I’ve been considering getting a nice camera to take some really great photos digitally… do you have any that you recommend?

    • Kirsten says

      This is Kirsten….it depends what your budget is and what you want to do with it….if it’s below $1,000, the Rebel series Cannons, if it’s below $1,300, the 60D Cannon, if it’s below $3,000 the 5D Mark II. You can start with a more inexpensive one, the work your way up if you love it or start taking photos professionally. I started, 10 years ago with a Rebel, then a 10D, and now a 5D Mark II. What do you y’all think other chicks?

      • says

        See my response in a previous comment, but I really love Canon like Kirsten. The Rebel series is a great place to start and are the least expensive of the line.

  3. Lara says

    You have such a wide variety of crafts that you share with us, Thank you! What tools, products or supplies are must for you to keep on hand? You know the things you always reach for when you are making your projects. TIA

    • says

      The thing about crafting is you never know what you’re going to need! The most random things at the most random times come in handy. I always keep extra ink for the printer and matte photo paper on hand. Love the double sided matte paper and use it for most things because it prints so much crisper than cardstock but doesn’t look like a photo. Paint, a variety of scrapbook paper, a glue gun, E6000, Silhouette SD and fabric also come in really handy :)

      • Kirsten says

        I like to collect random things when I find them at thrift stores or on sales (frames, plates, trinkets, ribbon, fabric) it’s almost more fun to create when you have to use things on hand. Oh canvases are always a must as well as different colors of point and sandpaper. Like Nik, I love the E6000 glue that works best for glass, metals, plastics, and resins (plates). PHOTOSHOP & LIGHTROOM and a fast computer are musts for my crafting since most everything we do includes print-outs and Photoshop. On my lists of wants, I want an industrial printer so I don’t have to go to Costco so much ;). Those are pricey little beasts, so that will have to wait!

  4. Ruthie says

    Do you use photoshop on your photos? If so, what, if any, actions do you use to get your “look”? That is, if you’re willing to share any of them, I guess. I’m just starting to look into this so I’m new to the whole arena. A photographer friend of mine suggested looking for free Photoshop applications and then tweaking them to create the look I want.

    • Kirsten says

      I use Photoshop and I also use LIghtroom a whole bunch and shoot with my camera in manual mode so I can get the look I want in-camera. My last camera wouldn’t produce the colors I wanted, but my newer one does. As for actions, I love the Pioneer Women actions, the “fresh and colorful” one particularly. When I’m shooting pics professionally with people in them (non craft shoots), I usually use one called “Powderoom” that smooths the skin. You will love Pioneer Woman’s action, just google that and they will show up, and best of all, they are FREE.

      • Ruthie says

        Thanks! My photographer friend mentioned Lightroom and Pioneer Woman, too, so I will definitely check those out once I get up and running. Most of my photography training was old school B&W with a dark room so I have a lot to learn with the digital stuff.

  5. Liz says

    Great timing! What suggestions do you have for wedding decorations? My daughter’s reception this summer will be in a church building cultural hall because it is too hot to have an outdoor reception. Any ideas for cost effective decorating? Centerpiece ideas?

    (We have lots of ideas in the planning stages, but nothing is “finished”, so we welcome suggestions!)

    • Kirsten says

      I think regardless, if you can find a way to get a huge bunch of white christmas lights and string them across the gym back and forth, that’s always magical. As for anything else, it depends what colors you are using and if you are using a theme. :) What colors? What are you doing so far?

  6. Katie J says

    What ever happened to Jenny (I think that was her name). I’ve followed for a while and I thought there were 6 of you.

    • Kirsten says

      Yes it was six of us until a couple of months ago ;). Jen made a courageous decision to focus more time on her family and other things. She has six kids and a photography business, things like doing a blog and website are time-consuming and it really has to be a great fit for you and for your family, which is our first priority here. She’s does it all, she’s amazing :).

  7. says

    I do digital projects in photo shop mostly just for fun and for my blog header, etc. This past week I made a baby shower invitation for my sister’s baby shower and had such a hard time finding a place to print my own design for a good price and at a good quality. After craziness at Costco, I decided to just have them printed at Staples on 11×17 cardstock and just cut them out. The problem is, the quality isn’t as good as I would like. The words look too pixelated even though I saved the project at the highest quality. Does anyone have a favorite printing place and what is the best way to save a project so it will print out crisp and smooth?

    • says

      If I have a lot of time I use an online print place. But because I usually wait until the last minute, I use a local printer often. We have one just a few blocks away and by the time I figure in shipping, their price is very close to an online printer, and they are great to work with. Be sure you set your resolution to 300 pixels per inch to get the best quality print! You’ll find that under Image>Image Size. 72 px is web resolution and 300 px is print resolution.

  8. says

    How did you all meet? How do you determine who does what? Like who does more paper crafting? Sewing? Or food? Or do you all just do them all? Do you find it hard to share a blog or is it less stressful because there are several of you who can share the load? Do you ever come up with the same idea at the same time?

    • says

      Although we’ve been blogging together for 3 years, we didn’t all meet each other until last year! That’s the beauty of the internet I suppose. Brooke and Kirsten are cousins, Kirsten and Jamie were neighbors, Jamie and Becky’s husbands worked together, and I was college roommates with Jamie. Becky and Jamie had the idea to start a craft idea sharing blog and invited the rest of us to join them. No,we don’t have assigned craft areas-but we do split up the responsibilities of the blog. We think sharing a blog helps lighten the load, but we’ll admit getting 5 minds to agree can sometimes be difficult :)

  9. Karen says

    Could you share your secrets to “getting it all done”? Maybe a glimpse at your daily/weekly schedule and/or your best time management tips?

  10. says

    Oh Karen..we all still figuring it all out. :)
    We have a schedule of when we are suppose to post and also take turns with other things like giveaways, guest posts, and almost anything else we have going on. A couple of us focus on the back-end type stuff like emails and such. While Brooke does tons to keep out site looking lovely and clean. Then others work with sponsors and marketing type stuff. It all comes together but we are still learning and growing.
    As far as life goes, we are still learning how to balance it all. Needless to say, my house is never as clean as I would like, but dinner is usually made and my girls play well with each other. I do a lot at nap-time and try to spend as much time with my family as I can. I think having a schedule of posting and duties really helps us not have to take too much time away from our families.
    Hope that answers your question.

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