If you love handmade crafts, then you no doubt know about One Pretty Thing, a blog with round-ups from creative ideas all over the internet in one place! From Mother’s Day and Knitting round-ups, to getting advice about your craft business, you’ll find the most wonderful ideas and inspiration at One Pretty Thing.

I’ve gotten to know Rachel, the brain behind One Pretty Thing through blogging and emailing, but there was so much more I wanted to know about her. I’m sure if you’re a fan, you do too! For one thing…. what does she look like?? I don’t know about you, but all I’ve seen is her little cat Lil’ B. Apparently he loves getting emails;-)

I made sure Rachel sent a photo, so the mystery could be solved!! What a delight to put a face to all of her lovely comments and emails. With Lil’ B in hand and sitting at her computer, she looks exactly how I imagined!

I hope you are inspired by Rachel’s interview and enjoy getting some behind the scenes scoop about one of my favorite blogs.

When did you start One Pretty Thing and what inspired you?

I started One Pretty Thing a year and a half ago. One afternoon I was browsing around the internet and I stumbled on a craft blog.  I was instantly smitten and wanted to create my own space where I could share what I was making and write up my own tutorials.  Whenever I try a project I read and learn as much about it as I can, so when I did a tutorial I included as many relevant links as I could find. For example, if I made a terrarium, I included a list of all the other terrarium tutorials I could find, plus terrarium decorating links, supply links, etc. I only blogged like this for about a week when I realized I was spending an insane amount of time tracking down all these other tutorials. I decided to begin blogging The Daily DIY- a list off all the tutorials I found each day. People loved it instantly. I switched gears in a hurry and spent all of my time working on those link lists which became the Roundups I now post.

I’m amazed by all the things you find. Sometimes you even have blog round-ups 2-3 times a day and you leave comments everywhere. How much time do you spend online? About how many email submissions do you get per day?

I spent a lot of time online- around ten hours a day! I spend a few hours answering email, a few working on Roundups and commenting on projects. The rest of my time I spend working on maintenance and new features for the future. This week there will be quite a few fourteen hour days while I finish up a slight redesign. It’s a huge amount of work but I love it!  As far as email goes, I usually I get anywhere from forty to sixty emails a day, and the bulk of those are submissions. I wish that I could respond to each and every email but right now I just can’t. I do read every one though!

Are you an artist or crafter? What else do you do besides One Pretty Thing?

I’m a huge crafter and DIY fiend! I love to paint, sew, knit, crochet, paper craft… you name it! I’ll try anything and I usually have around five projects going at once. I try to spend a little time every day working on a craft project. I actually have it as an item on my daily to-do list, otherwise site activities would take over my free time. I never want the website to get in the way of the whole reason I started the site- my love of DIY and crafting!

Your blog is very popular, what are some things you had no idea about before now? Things you wish someone would have told you about blogging when you first started out?

Most of what I know now I’m really happy to have struggled through myself. I place so much value in the trial and error process. What works for one person or blog won’t work for another, so I read as much as I can, experiment and keep good notes. I’ve always wanted to do a behind the scenes blog and share my process with others. It’s another project on my list!

That being said, something that I am working on currently and wish I knew more about is monetizing my site and selling ads. For me it’s a must because my hosting bill gets bigger every few months. I love that 15,000 people a day come to my blog but wow, hosting that is an expensive hobby. I’ve learned so much but it would be nice to snap my fingers and know the right way to go about covering my costs. When I have time I read sites like ProBlogger and learn as much as I can about that area.

I also wish someone had told me what a huge amount of time blogging takes up! I would suggest that a new blogger pick an amount of time each week that they’re willing to devote to their blog and stick with it. There is so much inspiration out there and people are inclined to want to do it all. It’s tough not to compare your site and content to that of others but if you’re doing your best with the amount of time you have it really helps you feel good about what you’ve created. Picking a set amount of time also helps blogging to not interfere with your family and home life. That being said, I’m the girl who is willing to devote fourteen hours a day to her site, so take that with a grain of salt.

What is the MOST fun thing that has happened since starting One Pretty Thing?

I have met some of the most FUN people through the website! I’ve connected with people both locally and at out of town events through One Pretty Thing and the associated Twitter account. We’ve bonded over a shared love of DIY and handmade. Having friends come to me for wedding, decor and gift ideas has also been a really fun aspect of the site. I’ve been to weddings and parties and completely recognized the DIY projects that I sent to certain people. “Hey! That’s Crafter Girl’s tree stump card box project!” I love seeing that my site actually helps people!

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What are three of your most favorite projects or posts?

This is hard! I usually look in depth at around forty projects a day so… wow. Tough choice. Projects I return to again and again are those that make great gifts. I have gotten a wonderful response from:

The Margaret sling bag from Oh, Fransson!

The Black Apple doll from Emily of the Black Apple

Rick Rack napkins from The Purl Bee

I revisit The Handmade Gift Guide again and again so those are always my favorite Roundups!

What’s in store for One Pretty Thing? Any big plans you can give us scoop on?

I have so many fun things I’m working on for the site, some which have been in the works for the past year! I have a slight redesign coming up very soon. It won’t look that different to readers but it’s going to allow me to add all sorts of fun things- like a new faq, a new look for the Handmade Gift Guide and built in bookmarks! I want people to be able to mark the projects they like and create their own custom Roundups of projects. This is a must for me since my bookmarks are out of control.

I imagine I’ll be creating a personal Gift Roundup, a Decor Roundup and more. It will definitely be a fun and useful feature. I’m also planning on making a separate page for Wedding and Kid’s DIY projects. I don’t plan on taking those Roundups off the main One Pretty Thing site, but this way I can add even more tutorials and DIY inspiration without wedding or kid’s projects taking over. I can’t wait for that. With so many friends getting married this year I’ve been bookmarking like mad, so it will be great to have an official outlet. I’m also working on a really simple two field submission form that will easily allow everyone to submit their projects in just a few seconds. So many ideas and so little time! If anyone has a link to a great time machine tutorial, let me know.

Thanks so much for the wonderful interview Rachel!! It was a joy getting to know you better. Good luck with all of your upcoming projects. I’m sure they will be fantastic! -Amy

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26 Comments

  1. Rachel – it’s so wonderful learning more about you and matching a face to your name! We can’t thank you enough for the support you’ve given to our blog. We appreciate it so much.

  2. I {heart} Rachel and One Pretty Thing. LOVED seeing the picture of the woman behind the curtain & getting to know her better!

    Thanks Amy & Rachel!

  3. Thank you for sharing more about Rachel, she has been so kind, sharing a number of my projects and bringing new readers to my blog, Childhood 101. Wishing you all the best for your future plans, Rachel, may many blessings come your way in return for your hard work and how much you give to others.
    Christie
    .-= Christie – Childhood 101´s last blog ..Nature Kids: Our Backyard Nature Play =-.

  4. K, that was fun seeing Rachel’s photo because I often wondered what she looked like. She is “one pretty thing”…I mean gal! Thanks for the fun interview!

  5. This was a wonderful interview of one of my favorite people on the web. Rachel is totally inspiring, supportive and always, always gracious! She has contributed to the success of so many blogs, including my own. Thanks for this insightful look into her world.
    .-= maya*made´s last blog ..fix-it friday #5 =-.

  6. Oh, I love One Pretty Thing. And I love the idea about bookmarks, cause mine are out of control, too. Thanks for the interview about Rachel!

  7. I absolutely love One Pretty Thing! Thank you so much Rachel for taking the time to keep all us crazy crafty gals in the know with the many cool and clever tutorials out there.

    I am predominantly a stamper/cardmaker. I visit your site for inspiration some day I hope to crossover more into other crafts besides just papercrafting.

    Smiles!
    .-= Nancy Grant´s last blog ..The Day Before May =-.

  8. Thank you so much for having me Amy, this was an absolute blast! And all these warm and fuzzy comments have totally made my (and Lil B’s!) day! You readers are the best!
    .-= Rachel´s last blog ..Bridal Shower Roundup =-.

  9. It’s SO great to see you, Rachel!!

    Don’t you just wanna hug this woman? And she is “the woman” if you ask me. Everyone knows One Pretty Thing. Many thanks for her willingness to feature my few things so far.

    If she doesn’t make a mint from her site, she certainly should.

    Thank you so much for allowing us this interview. I love it!
    .-= Julie @ Practically Spent´s last blog ..The Food Revolution =-.

  10. Rachel is one of my very most favorite people! She has driven literally thousands of people to my blog via her round-ups (yee haw!!!).

    I have loved getting to know her personally and am so thankful for everything she does for all us crafters out there!

    I head to OPT when I need an extra big dose of inspiration! It’s a sure fire way to get the craft wheels turning again if you get stuck!
    .-= LollyChops´s last blog ..The "thanks for the skirts MomChops" felt flower wreath… =-.

  11. Great job on the interview! I credit Rachel for helping me really grow my blog – she is awesome! It is so wonderful to be able to put a face with a name. Now when we are emailing, I will actually be able to visualize who I am talking with.

    Thanks for doing this interview – great job!!

    Lindsay

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