Hello everyone! Hope you all had a delightful Christmas and enjoyed with your family and friends. Today, in ‘Crafter in the Spotlight’ I bring you the inspiring story of an ardent crafter Monika Shukla who holds a Ph.D. in Biotechnology but enjoys crafting equally as much!
Monika loves gifting handmade cards, albums and other creative knickknacks to her family and friends because she feels handcrafted gifts are always special. Crafts and painting has been Monika’s hobby since childhood. She likes scrapbooking, card making, mixed media arts, home décor items and 3D projects. She is extremely fond of stamping, painting and stencil and likes to include them in her projects.
Read along to find more about Monika’s journey. How did she get into crafting, what inspires her, what are her tips for fellow crafters, her favourite quote, how would she contribute to the crafting world if she had magical powers? Also, catch glimpses of a step-by-step project by Monika. Don’t forget to shower your love on Monika in the comments section!
Rashmi Closepet MD Itsy Bitsy : Tell us a bit about yourself & your background?
First of all, I am so thankful to Itsy Bitsy for featuring my story on their wonderful crafty place. I am so happy and honoured to be the “Crafter in the Spotlight”.
Monika Shukla : I am Monika Shukla, born and raised in Etawah, Uttar Pradesh. I am a proud holder of a Doctoral degree (Ph.D. in Biotechnology) and have also worked as a researcher in India’s top most Institution ‘Indian Agricultural Research Institute’, New Delhi. My husband is a fabulous and a very patient man who understands my love for art and craft very well. I started crafting in 2017, as my passion and profession. I feel excited when making art pieces which bring me satisfaction and a different level of happiness from my home-based craft studio. Besides crafting, I love traveling, listening music, and blogging. My world revolves around my 3 years old son and my caring husband. They bring me joy and new ideas for my projects. I recently moved to Abu Dhabi with my family and am looking forward to visit some amazing places all around the UAE.
RC: How did you get into crafting?
MK: I absolutely love to gift handcrafted cards, albums and something creative to my family, friends and relatives. It always makes everyone feel so special when you gift anything that’s handmade. The smile on the receivers face makes me so happy. I feel I am more creative in scrapbooking, mixed media arts, home décor items and 3D projects. Crafting and painting have been my hobby since I was a child. My mother inspired me always with her artistic acumen. In my childhood, I used to make handmade cards, DIY crafts, paintings, soft toys, recycle items and embroidery. Later I realized my affection for painting, stamping, using water colour, acrylic and stencil during my certification from prestigious IGD Bombay Art. So now I have moved on to card making, scrapbooking, mixed media and more.
RC: What is your favourite type of craft?
MK: I always love to make scrapbook layouts for my cute little boy and it helps me to preserve his childhood memories. I put my heart into creating something unique each time. I would love to try all forms….but till now my favourite are Mixed Media art, Up-Cycling and Scrapbooking. Nowadays, I love to use Mixed Media techniques in almost every handcrafted project.
RC: What are your favourite products at Itsy Bitsy?
MK: My all time favorites are Little Birdie handmade flowers, thin cut dies, Mixed Media Paste, Color Splash sprays, Chalk paints and Chipboards.
RC: If you had magical powers, how would you contribute to the Crafting world?
MK : If I had magical powers, I would love to share my art and craft skills for free to spread awareness about art and crafts. In my views, art therapy works as a stress buster and encourages self-expression through painting, drawing, crafting and more.
RC: What are your prized possessions in your craft stash from Itsy Bitsy?
MK : Little Birdie handmade flowers, Mixed Media Paste 2 in 1 Modeling Paste, Color Splash Sprays, Chipboards and Clear stamps.
RC: How would you describe your style of crafting?
MK : I do not restrict myself to a certain style. For me art has always been about exploring new things. I enjoy making handmade albums, scrapbooks layouts, cards, canvas, art-journals and other arts. I love experimenting with new styles when it comes to crafting. I always look forward to create something from my heart and try not to repeat myself. Up-cycling and designing home decor art pieces from any type scrap material, shabby chic style and mixed media have always been my strength. I always look for new inspirations and try to explore beyond my boundaries.
RC: How do you organize your time for crafting?
MK : I usually craft during afternoons and late nights, but I am always charged up to get my fingers dirty and have some crafty fun.
RC: What are your tips for people who want to craft?
MK: I want to add some beautiful lines from my so favourite and Mixed Media inspiration Keren Tamir. She is truly an amazing artist and kind soul. I am sure these beautiful lines will boost you up each day for a great success and to fulfill your crafty dreams.
“For those of you who have your own crafty dreams, I just want to bless you with love and let you know to continue on and never give up!! Dreams do come true!! Hard work, passion and dedication always pay off at the end!! Your journey might have ups and downs but keep on following your dreams!”
Lastly, be inspired and learn from our fellow crafters around the world. It always helps you to learn new tips and techniques which will enhance your creative skills as well. It’s great to be influenced by your fellow crafters or team mates, but while creating don’t forget to add some “TADKA” or your own style.
RC: What’s your all -time favourite quote?
MK: “Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass, but learning to dance in the rain”.
Here is a Step by Step project by Monika
I am going to share, how to alter waste plastic material into gorgeous Mixed Media Art piece. So let’s get started.
- I have used two big plastic lids as bases and applied Little Birdie- Mixed Media Paste 2 in 1 (White) with the help of a medium size brush. Dried them completely.
I arranged loads of Craft Essentials- Sea shells using hot glue on both lids, also added some Sisal Fibre (Natural) in between the shells randomly.
After that, I made a mixure of Texture Sand and Mixed Media Stones with Mixed Media Paste 2 in 1 and applied this paste onto sea shells partially. Then dried it completely.
Next, started adding colours! I used different shades of Little Birdie Color Splash- Lemon Zing, Tangerine and Mocha along with Gold Alcohol Splash- Citron Breeze. For blue, I used a spray. I dried everything completely and for finishing, I gently brushed some Pearlised Metallic Paints Azure Sky and Mint.
When everything was dry, I then added some paper dolls and sentiments to complete my Mixed Media Art pieces.
Here are more pictures of the finished project:
I hope you will like it.
Here are a couple of Monika’s other awesome creations:
Many congrats Monika for being the CRAFTER IN THE SPOTLIGHT – ITSY BITSY!!
You will receive Rs.500/- Itsy Bitsy gift voucher & a Crafter in the Spotlight badge, which can be proudly displayed on the side bar of your blog and other platforms. Looking forward to many more creations, Happy Crafting!