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CraftSanity Podcast Episode 101: A Chat with MixTape Editor & Publisher, Justine Telfer

On this episode of CraftSanity you’re going to hear a conversation with Justine Telfer, editor and publisher of the Melbourne, Australia-based zine, MixTape. I love this self-published craft zine because it’s put together with passion and offers interesting commentary on the world of art and craft.

Mixtape started publishing in 2007 and is all about “making time for the small things.” It’s mission is to document the “collision of craft, eco-cool and pop culture kitsch.” Three hundred copies of the first issue were photocopied and sold out. The demand forced the purchase of a home laser jet printer. Now the 1,500 copies are printed professionally in full-color and shipped to subscribers around the world.

Justine, 36, shares the story of how she started MixTape with a friend and continues to grow the publication on her own two years later. This podcast was especially fun for me since making a zine of my own is on my to-do list.

If you want to contribute to MixTape, find out how to subscribe and check out the submission guidelines for issue 11. The theme is “Thinking Outside the Square.”

Win a Copy of MixTape! Leave a comment below this telling us how you make time for the small things and get in the random drawing to win one of five copies of MixTape!

A special thanks to episode 101 sponsors, Missy Kulik and Buttontree Lane!
Missy Kulik makes comics, zines, and other handmade goodies. Check out her website at and Shop Sugar Cookie at and her blog at

Using unique Australian screenprinted fabrics and cute Japanese prints, Buttontree Lane makes quilted pouches perfect for crafters, knitters and crocheters and woodland-inspired needlebooks to ensure that you’ll never lose your sewing needles again. Shop The Canberra Australia-based, and visit

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Comment from Kitty
Time: July 26, 2009, 10:33 pm

It depends on what I’m busy with and what gets in the way of crafting, but I mostly make time by including my kids in the crafts.
Bye, Kitty

Comment from linda
Time: July 27, 2009, 3:41 am

Thanks for a great podcast – very inspiring! All the best to Justine with MixTape as well.

I make time for the little things very consciously…we all have to stop sometimes and just take deep breaths. Don’t miss the beauty all around you, stop and really soak it in and use any spare moment to scribble down a great idea, a random musing or a quick sketch. That’s how I do it. Those little things can lead to great big things in the future.

Comment from Turtle
Time: July 27, 2009, 10:53 am

We schedule our time for the little things with eachother through modern technology…. by texting! Hubby, daughter her boyfriend & best friend and i all keep in touch throughout the day by texting eachother and can make plans this way. Then when evening comes we can all get together for a quick meal off the grill, a round of croquet , darts, or even to watch a movie at home. We are always aware of where everyone is and how they’re doing. sometimes modern technology is a good thing!

Comment from Kirsty Hall
Time: July 27, 2009, 4:35 pm

When my son was little, I used to make time for the little things by working on the edges of the day and doing things like photography that could be picked up and put down fairly easily. Even though he’s a teenager now, I find that I still tend to do this a lot – I think I trained myself to grab any creative time that I could! I often multitask too. For example, whilst I listened to this podcast I was sewing sequins on an apron. It’s the current art piece that I’m working on and it’s mostly been done whilst listening to creative podcasts, I find it hugely satisfying that I’m doubling up my time.

Comment from Cindy Olson
Time: July 27, 2009, 6:38 pm

I really enjoyed your interview with Justine Telfer. I make time for the small things by just working on things when I am doing something else. For example, I do needwork and crochet or cut out patterns when I am watching TV. I donate one portion of my day to do some aspect of my current project – even if it is to sew buttons on something. It makes me feel good to cross these off my list. As a craft addict I like, love everything and it is easy to get overwhelmed so I almost have to schedule little bits in for every day.

Comment from Patty
Time: July 27, 2009, 8:47 pm

Love your podcast, love this specific one especially:)

I find that I make time for the little things all of the time. Whether its riding on the train or subway to work, stopping to sit for a few to get a cup of coffee, enjoying my break from work during the day, I savor it all. I fill it with brainstorming, and reading, music and daydreaming. Its important to make as much time as you can, and I think I have succeeded in that:)

Comment from Beth
Time: July 27, 2009, 10:25 pm

Australia is full of creative crafters! I make time for the things I enjoy by putting the kids to bed early.

Comment from Kari
Time: July 28, 2009, 6:56 am

I’m still trying to figure out how to make time for the small things.
So far what works best is ignoring emails and phone calls so I can craft during my 13 month old son’s nap times.
I’m excited to start crafting with him ASAP.
Cannot wait to check out Mix Tape!

Comment from Lucie
Time: July 28, 2009, 8:26 am

Thank you for introducing this zine! I can’t wait to check it out.

I make time for the little things by making lists of what I want to do and planning ahead!

Comment from sherri
Time: July 28, 2009, 12:36 pm

I stop what I’m doing take a deep breath and I crochet. While I crochet I pray
/meditate on loved ones and issues of the day. I try and do one good deed a day more if I can. I try and care for people everyday too! I love your podcast and always look forward to hearing what you have to say. Keep up the great work!

Comment from Lucie D
Time: July 28, 2009, 2:34 pm

Many, many years ago I read an article which encouraged everyone to do 10 things they enjoyed every day — I have always remembered that and am conscious of doing those ten things every day — 10 small things which give me great enjoyment.

Comment from Emily D
Time: July 28, 2009, 9:56 pm

I would love to get my hands on a copy of MixTape!
I always make time for the little things because it is those little things that make life a little less stressful. I love that morning drive to work where I can play the music really loud and sip my coffee and at lunch time I usually listen to a podcast or read. By the time I get home from work I always have some type of crafty project going on and I love doing just about anything so I can learn new techniques. Being new to Portland, I spend the weekends exploring the city. Just last weekend I went to the International Rose Garden to see them in bloom and the scent of roses is everywhere! So enjoyable.
Thank you for such wonderful podcasts and for this opportunity!

Comment from JayeL
Time: July 28, 2009, 10:34 pm

What I tell myself is “a seam a day; the quilt gets done that way”. The bonus is that sewing makes me a much nicer person to be around! I also keep a couple of hand projects around so I can grab them and work on something when I have a few minutes or am waiting, as well. I have several projects going at a time, but I make progress and don’t get bored.

Thanks for your hard work, Jennifer. Hope your new work schedule is working out for you!

Comment from Frances
Time: July 29, 2009, 7:23 am

When something comes to mind I finish what I am doing and then move on to the next creative moment. I focus on what flows through me and trust in the guidance of my inner voice. It helps too that I have set up different and various stations around my creative space given solely to the purpose of one craft. Organization is key to the flow of creativity!

Comment from Beth
Time: July 29, 2009, 10:56 am

I make time for the small things by ignoring household chores. I know it’s probably not the best way to make time for the small things but it keeps me happy : )

Comment from Thien-Kim
Time: July 29, 2009, 1:01 pm

OMG! I haven’t even listened to the entire podcast and I’m inspired to write a zine! I try to sneak in a bit of crafting after the kiddo is in bed.

Comment from Laura
Time: July 29, 2009, 1:05 pm

I make time for little things when my 7 month old daughter, Violet, is napping. Then, if she wakes up mid-project, I just drag her along. Lately, she’s fond of trying to eat my paper for projects. Naughty!

I would LOVE an issue of Mix Tape. I particularly want to see articles of sewing. Thanks!

Comment from Lissy
Time: July 29, 2009, 1:49 pm

One way I make time for crafting and the things I love is by working a job that pays less but which demands fewer hours. Many of the folks I went to law school with work insane amounts of hours and have no life outside of work. On the other hand, they’re probably earning twice or three times (or more) than I make. I work for a non-profit organization that pays not a bunch but enough, and whose mission I am passionate about. I have to say another way I have more time than other folks I know is that I don’t have children. My hat it SO off to parents. You all are heroes and you have my respect for the sacrifices and contribution to society you make. I would love to be chosen to receive a copy of Mixtape. The name brings me back to the 80s, my favorite decades.

Comment from woolpets
Time: July 29, 2009, 4:31 pm

Loved the interview! I’ve seen mixed tape around and I’d love to have a copy. Making time for the small things is essential. Each morning, I go for a walk with my dogs and think about what small thing I can do that will bring beauty to the world. Even if that is something as simple as saying ‘thank you’ to the bus driver as I get off the bus, or making a phone call to say hi to a friend, or noticing the beauty in something simple like a leaf or stone. Everything can be remarkable in its own, small way.

Comment from Elizabeth
Time: July 30, 2009, 8:12 am

Jennifer, I know I say this every. time…but, another great interview!! Seriously. I love these podcasts. I haven’t been able to listen to them for awhile, but I am catching up now while working on hand-tying my first quilt! :) I’ve not seen a Mix-tape yet, and am so happy to be reminded of the PDFs on Etsy. I plan to catch up on them also and get a subscription.

I’ve always made time for the little things at night, as I am a night person. But the longer I stay home and take care of my kids, the more I realize that I am happiest when I go back and forth between my routine household jobs and my creative endeavours. I tend to get the chores done more quickly, as I am excited to get to crafting, and I tend to go back to the chores after crafting, actually enjoying (a bit) the monotony of something like laundry-folding because I can then process the creative burst I just had. I guess it boils down to making my day a lot more interesting and less boring.

Jennifer, congratulations again on your job transition! And Justine, it was so lovely to hear your story.

Comment from KellyV
Time: July 30, 2009, 9:11 am

I quilt (my small thing) before work most every day. I get up about 45 minutes earlier than I absolutely would have to and get ready for work. Then, the magical time begins. Being in this creative, productive place makes me a better speech therapist, lends me patience during the day, and even in this little bit of time, I do get quilts made.

Comment from JenAus0524
Time: July 30, 2009, 9:27 am

Thanks for another great interview. Justine is a great example of following your passion.

I make time for creative pursuits by having projects accessible. I scrapbook and keep my current pics and my trimmer on a shelf in the kitchen so I can get a little cropping done while I’m on the phone, etc. I also am an avid knitter and make sure I always have a project handy in the car, my bag, etc. I can get a few rows in while waiting in line, stuck in traffic, etc. I even pull my knitting out after work before I leave the parking lot to drive home. It helps me unwind for a few minutes and leave work at work before I focus on my home and family. I found a knitting group and carving out that time each week to sit, socialize and knit is a gift to myself.

Lastly, I keep a small notebook in my purse so I can write down ideas that I come up with, a story, design or color combination that I’d like to expand upon later.

Comment from Trish Goodfield
Time: July 30, 2009, 4:24 pm

I Recently wrote an article on Justine for ‘The Crafter’s Way”. I love her enthusiasm and passion for Mixtape. Its a great forum for artists and crafters.

Comment from Fanie!
Time: July 31, 2009, 12:23 pm

Hello Jennifer,

Thank you for this Podcast, it was very, very interesting and inspiring. I’ve heard a little about MixTape on and off, but hearing about the lady behind it made me want to check it out even more.

As for the question, I would say you need to -take- the time for little things. :-)
If you’re very busy, choose a date and write it on your agenda as if it was appointment with the dentist.
You can always organize a little “Crafternoon” with friends, as well.

Comment from Renee
Time: July 31, 2009, 3:18 pm

Now that I’m laid off from work I have lots of time for the little things and the big things! However, when I was working full time I had to make it a consious effort to make time for the small stuff that keeps me sane! I would weekly plan out our evening calendar and alway schedule some me time to sew, read, surf the internet, or whatever!

Comment from Nancy
Time: August 1, 2009, 6:39 am

Hi Jennifer. Thank you so much for your podcasts. They are very inspiring and enjoyable to listen to and they certainly make housework more pleasurable! (I listened to your interview with Justine whilst cleaning the bathroom and got through it in no time!). Thanks to Justine too. I have seen ads for Mixtape – now I’m eager to read one.

I make time for the little things by noticing the birds that fly overhead on a sunny day while hanging the washing in the backyard, enjoying a deep conversation with my son as we go for a brisk walk around the neighbourhood, listening to music with my daughter that we both enjoy in the car on the way to work/school and taking half an hour or so to quietly read or crochet when the house is quiet and still. These are a few ‘little’ things that perhaps in our hearts we truly know are the ‘big’ things.

Comment from Shari Elias
Time: August 1, 2009, 5:47 pm

Hi Jenifer, I enjoy listening to your podcasts and have been doing so for about a year. I hope to one day listen to the earlier ones. I am a knitter, but I am amazed by all the different crafts that people are into.

I am in a temporay cubicle at work, and I make to just to look and bury myself in the trees that are moving from side to side and up down. To look only for a moment relaxes and then it is back to work.

Comment from Sherri D
Time: August 2, 2009, 5:32 am

I make time for the little things by committing to do something craft related each day. I find if I write it down on my blog the day before, then I have a better chance of getting to it the next day. The biggest hurdle I have in making time for anything is me! So I mentally have to give myself permission to take time for the little things. :)

Comment from nicole
Time: August 2, 2009, 11:39 am

I make time for the small stuff by taking advantage of those moments when I am between or waiting. As a bus commuter I take the time in transit to pull out my knitting, listen to a podcast, or even have a conversation with a stranger. These small things center me and make my days feel complete.

Thanks for an amazing podcast!

Comment from sam ls
Time: August 2, 2009, 3:57 pm

I make time for the small things by always carrying them with me if they are some sort of portable craft like knitting or crochet, and by making sure I don’t over schedule so I can enjoy the non-portable small things like petting my cats or watering the garden. With the portable things I just pull them out and work on them if I am not doing anything important (i.e. waiting for the bus, during classes, in the car etc).

Comment from Missy K
Time: August 2, 2009, 5:22 pm

I make time for the little things by staying up late! I know it is not the best idea, but sometimes it is the only way to get crafting done!

Comment from kelli
Time: August 2, 2009, 9:04 pm

I try to carry a project with me so that I can work during meetings/lectures. I also carry my ipod so I can listen to my favorite podcasts during long waits. I’ve also learned to say “no” to some commitments so I have time to do things that I would like to do.

Comment from kelli
Time: August 2, 2009, 9:05 pm

I try to carry a project with me so that I can work during meetings/lectures. I also carry my ipod so I can listen to my favorite podcasts during long waits. I’ve also learned to say “no” to some commitments so I have time to do things that I would like to do.

I’ve never seen mixtape and I’d love to read a copy!

Comment from Nancy Hildebrant
Time: August 3, 2009, 1:19 pm

I was happy to hear from Justine about this ‘zine, and would love to take a look at it.
I make time for the small things by not wasting time worrying about the big things. I do what I can about what I can control, and don’t sweat the rest. Finally, at 54, I can usually tell the difference.
Thanks, Jennifer and Justine, for a thought-provoking podcast.

Comment from Kathleen Fisher
Time: August 5, 2009, 5:45 am

First, let me say “congratulations” on your first Aussie episode — I’ve been waiting for this moment for a while and am so excited!

I make small craft items at a weekly craft group one of my friends started. In between all the coffee and chocolate we consume, there’s only time to think big, not actually make big things!

Comment from jmbmommy
Time: August 6, 2009, 10:20 pm

Time for the “small things”… There is no time for large or small things really when you are at home with kids SO you make time for them as you can. I had to make some ATCs for an exchange the other day and so I told my boys that it was “Craft time” and then I let them use some of my “forbidden to them” supplies and we had a great time of it. Thanks for the great work!

Comment from T2
Time: August 10, 2009, 4:23 pm

Before this show, I had no idea what a zine was. I associated it with those neon handmade posters that are on every tackable surface on college campuses. Thanks for showing me just how wrong I was and what I’ve been missing out on.

Comment from Erin
Time: August 25, 2009, 11:12 am

I work full-time so I have to plan time for sewing, knitting, or projects with my children.

Thanks for the giveaway. I have read good things about this zine!

Pingback from tortagialla the blog – art prints – designs – creations » Inspiration from Zines and Podcasts
Time: September 19, 2009, 2:34 am

[…] I had won a hard copy after listening to the interview of editor/publisher, Justine Telfer, on a CraftSanity podcast.  I really like MixTape because it provides articles pertaining to the craft community with some […]

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