Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Review Of 1st Episode Of TLC's Craft Wars

After the long and exciting wait for TLC's Craft Wars to air I have to say that I loved it. For those who missed it or for those of you who are not able to watch Craft Wars because it does not air in your area I will review each weekly show starting with this first episode.

First I want to start off with Tori Spelling. I thought she was an amazing host and I love her style all around. She is an avid crafter herself and has her own line of craft supplies. So when I heard that Tori Spelling was the host I really thought that she was the perfect choice.

The panel of judges are experts in crafting.
They are
Erica Domesek author of P.S I Made This,
Stephen Brown owner of Glitterville Studios and
Jo Pearson creative expert of Michaels.

The competitors are Cheryl Burchett from Knoxville, Tn. Cheryl is a high school art teacher. Cheryl wanted to win the whole show and said she was going all out. Traci Remley from Littleton, Co is a mom who got into crafting because she could not afford to buy all the pretty things she wanted after becoming pregnant so she decided to make things herself. Christy Tomlinson of Shelly, Id started crafting 18 years ago. Christy says crafting is not just a hobby but also a way she makes money. She loves the messy kind of artsy look.
Each of the crafters were able to bring along one person of their choice to assist them. Two of them brought their husbands and Traci brought her dad.
This show reminds me of a cross between Project Runway and the Martha Stewart show only it is all crafts. Each week the hour long Craft Wars show has 3 different crafters. The beginning of the show the crafters have a timed craft challenge called the Pop Craft Challenge. The Pop Craft Challenge will narrow the 3 contestants down to 2. This is where it really matters because in order for the judges to decide which crafter will win the $10,000 prize, the 2 contestants will compete in a much larger master craft challenge where they have to craft and create a much larger craft project using themed materials.
For the 1st Pop Craft Challenge the crafters had 1 hour to create a duffle bag out of athletic gear. The supplies they had to use were footballs, baseballs and many other types of balls, cheerleading outfits, pom poms, tennis rackets, ballet slippers, karate belts and many other types of athletic gear.
The crafters also were able to utilize the enormous craft closet provided by Michaels. This craft closet is a crafters dream come true. It has every type of craft supply and tool you can think of. All I know is that I would love to be able to dive in this huge craft closet and just create and craft. If that was not enough there is also a wood working shop that they are able to use.
This is really a crafters dream!
All 3 contestants used cheerleading outfits as part of their duffle bags. They also were able to pick out fabric that was in the craft closet.
Tracy used a cheerleading outfit, karate belts and a tennis racket as the bottom of her duffle bag. She had her dad cut off the handle and she attached it as the bottom of her bag. She thought it would be great to use as a vent for stinky athletic gear. The judges had different opinions as judges normally do. Stephen, one of the judges was not really impressed by the way she attached it to the bottom.
She used hot glue to attach it to the bag instead of sewing it. Jo wished that the tennis racket could be removed so that it could be thrown in the washing machine. But she felt that a teen or tween would love it. Erica, the last judge said "Rah Rah Siss Boom Blah" as her description of the bag. I think that sums up how she felt about this duffle bag.
Christy used beautiful blue chevron fabric, ballet slippers and a cheerleading outfit for her bag. She had her husband drill holes in 3 balls and threaded them through the handle. She also cut up a football and used parts that she painted blue to match her bag. It really looked beautiful and was a great detail. Of course the judges had different opinions about the balls and ballet slippers she used as pockets on each end of her duffle bag. The ballet slippers were just attached and not closed or made to look like a pocket. The judges thought it was a beautiful bag, a little too much going on but all in all they loved it.
 Cheryl used beautiful fabric from the craft closet as well, karate belts, footballs that were cut up and sewn in the bottom corners of the bag and a zipper. The judges loved the look but not the construction of it. She was unable to finish one half of the bag. They felt it was very stylish but wished it was fully finished. Cheryl had some trouble and was not able to finish her duffle bag. Before she used the sewing machine she used spray adhesive to hold some stripes and the sewing machine was not able to sew through that adhesive. I think she might have broken her sewing machine because of the adhesive.
I am not completely sure about that though!
 Remember the crafters only had 1 hour to finish this duffle bag
and that is not much time.
I have spent more then 1 hour on cards before.
Surprisingly even though Cheryl's bag was not finished the judges felt that her bag was better then a poorly constructed bag that Traci made so Traci was eliminated and Cheryl was sent to the next round. I will say that I was so nervous for them and I was not even on the show. 1 hour to make a duffle bag out of materials you normally would not use is quite a challenge
but they did really well.
 Next comes the big Master Craft Challenge. Tori's kids Liam and Stella come out saying "mom mom mom mom I got school supplies for you". Liam and Stella were carrying backpacks filled with school supplies. Tori took out the school supplies and says that it is  school supplies left over from the school year but it was not nearly enough for this challenge. A huge garage door opens and out comes cart fulls of school supplies. For this challenge they have 5 hours to create a child’s play house. Christy and Cheryl each get 4 craft helpers to help them build and create a child play house.

Christy wanted to make a school bus play house. She took all kinds of different yellow fabric and mod podged the entire bus. She also used composition notebooks on the doors of the bus and mod podged notebook paper on the inside of the school bus. Christy used chalk board paint and painted on the inside and outside in many places so that every wall was interactive for the kids. Christy had a huge apple shape cut out of wood and then added cork over the entire surface and painted it red so that it was an apple shape cork board. Really cute! She also took pink erasers and used them as door handles on the bus doors. It is almost impossible for me to tell you everything she added on her school bus play house. Even though Christy finished the entire bus the judges felt it was way too much going on especially with the scallop boarder that was added on the outside of the bus. The judges did not like that since there are no scallops on real school buses. Christy said she likes to add doodles and scallops everywhere. The judges felt it took away from the bus and there was no rhyme or reason for all the doodles. They wished there was continuity throughout her school bus.
Overall I felt she did a really great job and it was a huge
project to finish in 5 hours.
Cheryl wanted to make a classic little red school house. It makes sense since she is a teacher. Cheryl was very creative and made window shutters made out of rulers, window flower boxes made out of wood and she glued pencils over the front and added paper flowers with pencils as the stems. She added adorable curtains and made 4 huge pencils that looked like number 2 pencils complete with painted pink erasers on each of them. Cheryl's husband had some issues with the framing of their school house and for a minute it looked like her house was not going to be finished just like her duffle bag. Her husband corrected the problem and the school house frame went up and it started to come together. She painted the whole school house red and added other school type touches like a chalk board on the outside of the house. You could see a boarder of the alphabet across the rooftop of the porch which looked adorable.  Cheryl grabbed a ton of composition notebooks and took the covers off and stapled them on the roof and it looked amazing.
Over all it was a very very cute school house that any child would love to play in. She was not able to finish the floor and the judges said that there was nothing inside for the kids to play with unlike in Christy's school bus. So who would the judges pick as the winner? It was a tough call and I really am not sure who I
would have picked myself.
So the bottom line is who won the $10,000?
The winner of the first episode of TLC's Craft Wars and the $10,000 grand prize was.....Cheryl.
I was surprised that the judges did not eliminate Cheryl for not finishing her duffle bag on the Pop Craft Challenge and especially since the inside of her school house was not completed I was not sure she could win but the judges liked the outside of her school house better then the whole school bus that Christy made. Overall I really liked the show and I can't wait for next week.
I would love to know what you thought about the show and if you felt the judges made the right choice picking Cheryl as the winner. Next week after I watch the show I will do another review and to
be honest I can't wait to see what happens next!
If you love crafting I would say to make sure you catch
TLC's Craft Wars each Tuesday at 10 pm EST!
Until then Big Cricut Hugs to you all!!