? to Guest Blogger Christine
What has your experience with social media been like?
Guest Blogger: Christine, 30-something, Office Manager
I have been actively involved in social media for four years now; back then it was just called “Message Boards” though. Now I have gotten involved in my own blog- Christine’s Creations, Facebook, LinkedIn and even my own stream on Flickr - it’s not just for photos!
I use Facebook and LinkedIn to catch up with old friends and colleagues, but why does a boring Office Manager, mother of two, need her own blog you ask? Well about 12 years ago I learned to quilt – something I had always wanted to know how to do – and now it is my passion. Having my own blog allows me to share my projects, goals and ideas with other quilters from around the country and the world. Not only do we exchange ideas and motivation we physically exchange quilts. Most recently I sent one of my quilts to The Netherlands – without social media that would have never been possible.
Last fall I was looking for something new to do and I stumbled onto tatting. I’d be willing to bet that almost everybody who is reading this doesn’t even know what that is, or maybe it was something your grandmother did. It’s an old form a needlework that has been given new life through social media. I’d say right now there are hundreds of blogs dedicated to tatting - not bad for something most people have never heard of. This piece was done by me from a pattern designed by a woman who lives in Malaysia and done in a thread, hand dyed by a woman in Wisconsin. Both women I “met” through their blogs.
So how did I learn how to tat? Did I sit at my grandmother’s knee and watch her for hours – nope. Did I head to my local library and check out every book I could find on tatting – nope (there aren’t very many anyway). Did I sign up for a class at my local tatting store – they don’t even exist. I sat in front of my laptop and watched videos on YouTube!! That is social media at work. I was able to learn a completely new skill in the comfort of my own home in my PJ’s and bunny slippers. That is the same way I pay all my bills, balance my checkbook, buy concert tickets and even adopt a puppy (or two!).
And it’s not only other people with my same interests that I’m connecting to, it’s companies too. There are many quilt related business, designers and Mom and Pop shops that have blogs that I follow. They announce new lines and patterns, sales, giveaways, everything that will drive business to their website and I have to admit it works for me. I’ll see something new on a blog and click right to the website and buy it, again, from the comfort of my own home.
Social media for me is not only about expressing my creativity, it’s about connecting to people and companies both right in my own back yard to around the world. Seeing how far everything has come since I was a kid, it makes me wonder how far we’ll be when my kids are my age.