We were thrilled to have Amber of Damask Love, participate in our My Life In Color blog tour (you can read all about how she uses our journal here!). As you may have seen, Amber was a finalist on the NBC show, Making It, and we were holding our breath on every episode up until the finale. Way to go Amber! Have you seen the show? What did you think? I couldn’t help but think what I would have done for each project. It got the wheels inside my head churning! What about you? Well, I was dying of curiosity so Amber was kind enough to answer some questions about the show. Read the full interview below!You described your experience on air as a journey, yet you’ve been crafting for a number of years. How did you grow as an artist during the course of a few weeks on a show?
Never could I have guessed that I’d change and grow so much from filming Making It. Before Making It, my journey was more of a businesswoman and navigating my way through the every flooded population of influencers and bloggers. I was trying to figure out where I fit and what my service I provided to my community. On Making It, I wasn’t there as a business, I was there purely as a maker which encouraged me to dive into the stories behind each project. As a blogger, I work really hard to provide projects that reflect me, but also resonate with others. To that end, I intentionally avoid overly personal projects for fear that they may lack relatability. On the show, I only job was to create meaningful projects that reflect my own personal style. The journey reminded me just how personal crafting can be and reinvigorated my fire for lifting up the maker in everyone.
Any funny behind the scenes details you’re allowed to dish on Amy or Nick? Tell us everything!
Nick and Amy are the most funny, genuine, unassumming “celebrities” you’ll ever meet. I hope that doesn’t come across as an insult. What I mean is this: the second you disregard the fact that you’re standing next to Nick Offerman and Amy Poehler, you’ll realize they are great, easy going, normal people without an ounce of ego. I know…not exactly the juicy drama you were hoping for, right?!
There were plenty of silly antics on set…remember, you only get a one hour glimpse into the two or three days that went into filming each episode. One of my favorite moments on set was after the snack stadium challenge in episode three. We’d finished with judging and were all standing around. Amy took some of the rose and poured us all a glass…and by glass, I mean a plastic cup from craft services. Amy called it “pink water” and we all gladly chugged.
There was another time when Amy brought her sons to set. It was after we finished Episode 4: the holiday porch display. Her sons were having a blast running around outside. They came into the barn in desperate need of a ninja mask. They came to the right place. With a barn full of crafters, we could whip up a ninja mask in no time. I grabbed some black felt while another member of the cast picked up some twine. In a matter of 90 seconds, they had the requisite ninja masks and were on their way.
And while we’re on the topic of funny moments, I just have to give you this exclusive tidbit about the cast antics:
What you may not realize is that during the entire filming of each episode, there are interviewers who check in on us while we’re crafting. They stop in pretty consistently, ask a few questions then quietly step away. They especially love to come interview you when you’re in the middle of an obvious screw up or having a challenging moment. Every crafter’s dream, right? All of their questions are edited out of the final episode, and you’re left with footage of the cast talking about what we’re doing, what we’re struggling with or what we are planning to do next. Well – after being interrupted a few times, you quickly devise strategies to keep the interviewers away. Billy and I came up with a pretty flawless approach: Sing licensed music. Because networks have to pay royalties on the use of licensed music, Billy and I would belt out Top 40’s tunes because we knew that footage couldn’t be used! Hilarious and sneaky, right? Sadly, the producers caught on to our scheme and regularly asked us to pipe down with the Biebs.
If you could do a project over, what would you have done differently?
When I think about this question, I can’t help but feel completely proud of my time on Making It. There is truly nothing I would do differently.
When you’re crafting on a national, primetime, competition show, there is a strong urge to create for the judges and make something that they will like. I really tried my best to NOT do this. For each project, I stayed completely true to the style of crafting I’m known for. My projects were colorful and had an element of familiarity and “doability.” Even though I got dinged by the judges for presenting projects that they’d “seen before” – I have no regrets. Even my embroidery floss God’s Eye cake topper from the finale of the show. The judges didn’t love it, but I really really did.
My goal with every Damask Love project is to inspire the maker in everyone, no matter where they fall on the spectrum of expertise. I aim to have a bit of familiarity in each project I make.
I couldn’t be prouder of the project I created on Making It and there is nothing I’d change.
Note: during the final wedding episode of Making It, Megan Mullally (Nick Offerman’s wife and Karen from Will & Grace) was in attendance. She sat off to the side, so as not to distract during filming. I really had to be on my very best behavior to not approach her and strike up conversation. That is my only regret of the entire show. I wish I would have said hello to Megan Mullally!
Which project on the show were you most excited to tackle? And on the flip side, which one were you most reluctant to get your hands on?
The circus fort and toy wagon project from Episode Two was by far my favorite…and also the project I was most nervous about. I am by no means a seamstress. My sewing skills are relegated to straight lines but with that circus tent, I had to step it up. The scalloped edge trim was a first for me and fitting a fabric tent top onto a hexagon base made of wood dowels…well…it’s not easy. Add to the equation, the cameras that catch every slip up and the interviewers who manage to check in at the most critical moment – crafting that circus tent was one of the most daunting challenges of the entire show.
Above, a picture of the paper quilt as made on the show
What’s your game plan going forward with this experience under your belt?
Making It was a huge springboard for me. I didn’t – and still don’t – consider myself to be a huge force within the community of DIY and crafting influencers, but with Making It under my belt, I feel a definite surge of confidence and credibility. My intention is to now take the momentum of Making It and build Damask Love as a noteworthy brand and resource for empowering the maker in each of us. I have some very exciting projects in the works and can’t wait to fully share with with my community of Damask Lovelies.
Thank you, Amber for the reveal. We loved hearing about the process. Read more about Amber on her blog, Damask Love, and see more of the show on Making it! (Pssst: I watched it on Hulu!)