Wow – you guys had some great questions about what goes on behind the scenes when we’re producing an issue of Creative Spaces! It was so much fun to read all the comments from that blog hop post and remember all the steps along the way in our journey to get this latest volume out the door.
As promised, I’m going to to take a stab at answering the questions you asked. But there were so many that I’ll break this into a few posts over the next couple of days. Today I’ll start by tackling the one that was by far the most popular question:
“How do you choose the spaces to feature in the issue?”
The answer to this one goes along with another question about how many we choose. Each issue is 132 pages, and we include about 25 spaces per issue. To choose the ones we publish, we use a somewhat organic process. Some spaces are emailed to us, and others we find on blogs or pinned on Pinterest (we also added an always-open call for spaces on our submission tab of the website). We ultimately select spaces to create a collection that reflects a variety of storage solutions, design styles, room sizes, and color schemes. And while they’re functional for sure, they’re also well-designed and aesthetically pleasing, so that’s a major factor we consider. Insider secret: since crafters and DIYers use a lot of storage options from IKEA, we see them frequently in the rooms that are submitted. We tend to select the ones that either re-purpose an IKEA item or integrate it in a clever and unexpected way.
“How long does the issue take from initial planning to newsstand?”
Normally, our special issues are about 6 or 7 months start to finish. But Creative Spaces is unique, and planning for the next issue can sometimes start before the current one is even complete. It can be up to 18 months from start to finish. And now that we’re offering Creative Spaces digitally in our iTunes app and through Zinio, there are many more elements of the planning involved with making an interactive digital version.
“What is your favorite part of the creative process? What was it like working with all these crafters and DIYers?”
Ah, two really great questions! Personally, my favorite part of the process is taking that first detailed look at all the professional photographs after they come in and noticing things that may not have been included in the preview shots. My other favorite part is working with the group of room owners and getting to know them as friends. Although I didn’t get to meet all of them in person, we had some spirited (and sometimes downright hilarious) email exchanges as arrangements were made.
“Which space surprised you the most and why? Which space style most closely matches your own and how? Did you go and remodel your own space after seeing the ones in this issue?”
I think the space that surprised me the most is Haeley Giambalvo’s space (which appeared on the cover). I’m not a huge fan of pink, but with her touches of black and metallic gold it’s the perfect blend of feminine, sophisticated, and fun and I really love how it looks. The space that is closest to my own is probably Lia Griffith’s. Hers has far more style than mine, but we both have a love of rustic, practical, and white walls. I don’t think I’ll be remodeling mine in the near future, but it could definitely use a major purge and straighten sometime soon!
“Was there anything new you hadn’t seen before? What was your overall favorite idea? Did any particular room just blow you away?”
Jennifer McGuire’s space totally blew me away, and included so many clever storage and organization solutions I hadn’t seen before. My favorite idea in her space is the way she stores her embossing powders and jars of glitter: she flips the jars upside down so the color can be readily seen through the bottom. And check this out: she uses plastic spoons with cord organizer clips under the lid of larger snap-seal containers that store her most often used colors. Someone asked if she’s just as delightful in person as she is on her blog, and that’s a resounding YES! Jennifer was a Paper Crafts Go-to Gal for two years and since then I’ve been lucky enough to call her a friend, too. She’s one amazing and talented human being.
Stay tuned for the next installments of Creative Spaces Behind the Scenes Q&A. Believe it or not, we still have lots of topics to cover:
- Storage ideas for small embellishments, washi tape, paper/cardstock, and scraps
- Organization tips for starting the space planning process, portable options, handing out of sight/out of mind, and keeping things tidy
- What it was like during the photo shoots, including secrets of lighting and staging the shots and how many photographers traveled how many miles to get all the photos
- General averages on the rooms – size, cabinets, shared or exclusive space
- Top 5 things YOU can implement right now