Sunday, 8 September 2013

Review of iMake Magazine Issue 1

I have long been a fan of Martine's iMake blog and podcasts so when she announced that her new venture was a magazine I couldn't wait to see what she came up with. I've been lucky enough to review the magazine this week and thoroughly enjoyable it is too. 

I think I first met Guernsey based Martine at Knit Nation in London several years ago. I then listened to her podcast a few days later to hear her talking excitedly with followers of the show about their gorgeous yarn and fluffy (pom pom) purchases.  It was like taking part in a crafty conversation with knitting group friends who perfectly understand the need to purchase that beautiful ball of yarn you just had to have - needless to say I loved it. I then had the pleasure of meeting Martine and the lovely Kate (it's a show rule that this is her pre-fix) over a year ago when they visited Toft Alpacas where I was working at the time.  The podcast following this visit was a great listen, okay so I might be a tiny bit biased as they were both very complimentary, but have a listen.  So I've been a fan of the podcast for a while and I regularly indulge in a listen whilst having some lunch at my kitchen table with a cup of Earl Grey.

Front cover of iMake Magazine issue 1Now to the magazine.  Of course it combines Martine's inimitable style found on her blog and in the podcast, featuring friends of both, including the lovely Kate and foody Charles, brought to life in a longer, content rich format. The design is fun, informal and classic, mirroring the look of the blog and inviting creative types to enjoy a good read with more than a side portion of inspiration. An article on foraging for example by fellow Guernsey dweller Jen Merrit, must be the first I've read on the subject.  Whether I'll be brave enough to pick nettles and use them instead of spinach the jury is out, who knows, it would certainly be one way to clear up the garden!
See the how to on making retro looking bowls from old records.
Record Bowls, photo courtesy of iMake blog.
Along with a delicious pesto recipe (that I plan on making this afternoon) and a how to on making bowls from old records, there is Today's List featuring 10 external websites and how to pages on various creative things to try your hand at - Tunisian crochet and writing a song for example, not the usual suggestions to be found in a craft magazine.

The magazine balances smaller lifestyle pieces with indepth articles. One such article about rare breed sheep by Clare Devine (who also designed the layout of the magazine for Martine) struck a particular cord with me.  My experience of yarn from animal to ball of yarn is mainly with alpaca. So although I have seen and been intrigued by the seaweed eating North Ronadlsay sheep for example, I'm quite a novice when it comes to the rare breeds we have here in the UK.  The article has certainly made me want to get out there to discover and support UK breeds and check out the work of Nude Ewe, of whom I'd never heard. In fact I've been inspired to make contact again with a lady just outside of this very village about her co-operative of rare breed sheep owners. I'd nearly forgotten there is potential for local craft materials right on my own door step, thanks to this article I can't wait to learn more.
Chewing over the seaweed with some North Ronadlsay sheep
North Ronadlsy sheep, photo courtesy of
I also enjoyed the piece by Kate Ellis about her new volunteer position with P/Hop who raise money and awareness for Medecin Sans Frontieres/Doctors without Borders.  Martine's piece about starting your own podcast is very informative, she's pretty whizzy technically so I wouldn't have thought it was something I could do easily, but it's made me consider the possibility of podcasting in the future.  For me I think Audioboo's could be very useful to accompany 'how-to's' for example.  Lastly I will leave it to you to buy the magazine and discover the topic of Jo Milmine's Golden Toilet article!

I did think that some of the articles could have been balanced with a few more photographs, particularly as the photos that are used are of such a high quality.  Martine tells me that future issues will have even more photographs, this was down to a small teething issue with embedding photos that is all fixed now.

So there you are, iMake issue 1 is available on Etsy for a mere snip and I highy recommend it. Click here for links to purchase and sign up to be notified when new issues are released. Supporting this issue means that not only are you supporting a fellow creative maker who has more than enough ideas and inspiration to go around, you are also ensuring issue 2 sees the light, so go on, you know it makes sense...!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Carrie, thanks SO much for such a lovely review. I am thrilled that you like the mag and I can't wait to get going on issue 2 :) thanks again! Martine