The summer before sixth grade, I moved to a new town and a new school. Jennifer was one of my very first friends there. At the time, I had a spiral curl perm (oh my) and a purple Mickey Mouse sweatshirt. Jennifer had short hair, glasses and a denim jacket that I loved. We were friends for so many years and have so many memories, we'd be here forever if I listed them all!
We lost touch for awhile in our 20's and early 30's. One day in 2006 (I think) Jen called me up, out of the blue, and we chatted for about an hour. We talked about our lives and what all was going on, and had this conversation, which still both thrills and amazes me:
Me:...and then I'm going to Las Vegas for a few days.
Her: Oh really, what for?
Me: Listen, please don't think I'm a total nutjob, but I'm going to a Harry Potter convention.
Her: Is it Lumos? Because I'm going too!
Is that CRAZY, or what? We did both go to the con, we met up and hugged, we re-connected via LJ and here we are, years later! The internet is amazing.
ANYWAY. I still haven't gotten to the inspiring part!
ofenjen is incredibly creative and talented. When we were in high school, she had this room, it literally was wallpapered with cool things, even the ceiling. No matter how hard I tried, I never could make my room look like hers. She also had this amazing denim jacket that she put studs and gems all over. (This was mid-80's y'all, WELL before the age of bedazzlers. If I remember correctly, she did all this with a hammer.) I still love that jacket!
Jennifer does crafts and makes things. I'm pretty sure there's nothing she can't create from her own two hands. She had an idea for a way to market her talents, but TPTB told her no. So, she twisted the idea and tried again. And twisted and twisted and twisted....and now she has made this amazing name for herself.
She teaches classes. She does these super cool ttmt video blogs every week. She creates patterns. Honestly, I don't understand 75 percent of her crafty terminology, but I know that she constantly is busy and constantly is pushing her talents out into the world. I respect Jennifer for many reasons, but that one? That one makes me in AWE of her.
Her website is here: http://sewhooked.org/ (She has patterns both for sale and for free -- check it out! I see links for quilting, crochet, crafts, paper piecing...)
Her craft blog is here: http://blog.sewhooked.org/ (I still covet that marble backsplash, even after all these years!)
She also runs hp_paperpiecing, twilight_crafts and paperpieced, among others.
Are you feeling inspired yet? Go check this stuff out!!
Besides her creativity, incredible talents, drive, strength, and kindness, one of the other best things about ofenjen is her willingness to share. She makes blankets for the Linus Foundation, she gives away patterns she's created for free, she arranges crafty swaps, and she's always working on projects for friends.
Recently, she sent me this AWESOME rainbow-knit hat. When I emailed her to say thank you, she responded with this: I love to share...and happy making is my favorite craft!
How can you not find THAT inspiring?