Tuesday, 17 September 2013

#CraftBlogClub - What Makes a Good Craft Tutorial?

Well, here's to another storming #CraftBlogClub session this evening!  I had another great evening hosting this wonderful Twitter chat, even though I had to balance baby's bedtime duty, with retweets and interesting conversations!  I aim to reply to everyone's messages as soon as possible - please bear with me!

So for this week's #CraftBlogClub, I chose a topic that I felt would really help newbie and experienced bloggers alike; What Makes a Good Craft Tutorial?  As usual, we had some fantastic feedback and opinions from twitter chat regulars and new additions to our crafty hub.  It was lovely to see some new tweeters amongst you tonight - I think #CraftBlogClub is taking Twitterland by storm and I've got lots of exciting future plans for it!

So here are a few pointers for creating a good crafty tutorial;
1. PHOTOS PHOTOS PHOTOS - the overwhelming 'must-have' for a good tutorial, is a great set of clear photographs, to accompany the text.  Clarity and good shots are for capturing works in progress and allowing the reader to follow easily.
2. Aim to explain - but don't patronise - the last thing anybody wants to feel, is as if they are back at school.  A blog, in general, needs to have a friendly and approachable tone and a tutorial is no different.  Encourage your readers through your words, don't make them feel small or lack in confidence.
3. Assuming a level of ability - this is a really sticky subject, we all want to inspire and, as someone who loves a challenge, I love really pushing myself with projects.  On the other hand, as craft bloggers, we don't want to alienate our readers with difficult projects.  The key is to find a balance of abilities in your tutorials and, hopefully, inspire your readers to try their hand at harder projects as and when.  I feel this really ties in with the tone of your tutorial - and I've managed to coin the phrase; 'if you've got the know-how, get the show-how'!!
4. Choose Readily Available Materials - to be honest, I wouldn't be likely to partake in a project that specified the need for 'yarn, freshly drawn from mountain-side alpacas in Springtime'.  In this modern age, we are lucky to have the likes of eBay at our fingertips; but ensuring that your materials and fabrics are relatively easy to get hold of, will encourage more readers to give your tutorial a try!
5. Be fresh and innovative with your ideas - I don't think there is anything wrong with classic projects, they can be great when trawling through the internet for new ideas.  But to keep your readers interested, your tutorials need to be fresh and fun!  Don't be afraid to stand out!
6. Try a video tutorial - I watch a shameless amount of YouTube videos - from tutorials to music videos and leftfield interviews.  Video and vlogging are great ways to bring a three-dimensional perspective to you and your blog.  If you are brave enough to step in front of the camera, it's a great way to bring your character and personality to life and connect with readers who might want something more visual to work with.
7. Learn from your mistakes (and include them) - as with last week, lots of people agreed that a level of showing project mistakes was great for tutorials.  Not only can you showcase how you tackled and resolved the problem creatively, you are touching upon that human side of the blogger that so many readers like to see.  Be careful though, don't give too much away, you are a pro at what you do!

There were some really interesting tweets tonight and I could go on - but I think these points cover most of tonight's conversation and I hope it's left you all feeling inspired about your next tutorial project!

Got it Covered???
Don't forget.....We have an end of the month deadline for September's #CraftBlogClub challenge.  Last week's post about this is HERE.  This month's challenge is to cover a notebook!  I've had some great ideas from people already and I CANNOT WAIT TO SEE THE RESULTS!

Also guys, there were quite a few tweets about challenge ideas this evening - if you have ideas, please drop them in an email to me at missemmaberry@gmail.com - I'm always popping down plans for #CraftBlogClub and I do suffer from a horrible mixture of Sieve/Baby Brain - so I would LOVE to hear from you!

Until next week - STAY CRAFTY!

E x

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