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Athena Preston

Athena Preston


Name: Athena Preston
Job Title: Senior Associate Craft Editor
Date started at company: in the craft department, November 2005, but I first worked here on the Kmart Holiday line way back in 2001
First story: Ribbon lettering for the December 2005 well openers
Hometown: Washington D.C.
Education: BFA Rhode Island School of Design, MA in the History of Decorative Arts and Design, Cooper-Hewitt Museum and Parsons School of Design
First Job: I worked at an ice-cream parlor called Thomas Sweet. I gave a lot away for free.
Astrological sign: Gemini
Personal crafting/artwork: various silkscreen, stenciling, and block-printing projects.
First craft memory: tea-dyeing white tights with my mother so they’d match the crocheted lace collar of a very special brown velvet dress. Also, around the same time- wallpapering my dollhouse
Things you collect: manufacturer’s samples of ceramic plates with handwritten notations and pattern swatches, Tove Jansson picture books, old rulers painted bright colors, paper ephemera, my co-workers’ discarded craft efforts

FAVORITE . . .
Color (Pantone): Pantone # 178
Holiday: Valentine’s day, I never tire of the palette
Pizza topping: fresh ricotta
Kind of Fabric: Prints of all sorts. Scandinavian linen and cotton, certain crazy chintzes (but certainly not others!), mill-engravings and other tiny patterns, lately nearly any fabric that combines pink and blue
Dessert: Yakimochi from Café Zaiya
Source: the library at the Cooper-Hewitt Lace Eggs

Editor's Archive

Behind the Scenes : Glitter Painting

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If you are finding yourself dazzled and awestruck by the image above  - it’s probably because it was painted in glitter! For the November issue of Living, we developed a new technique called glitter painting, based on the idea of paint-by-numbers, but using various colors of superfine glitter instead of paint. It was a new craft …

Our Library : Vintage Inspiration

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Above is a selection from our library of vintage books… always inspiring and entartaining look through! The first is an early book on paper flowers, which the crafts dept has made many varieties of over the years. I always think of Jodi when I see them. This book is really sweet and has good instructions. …

Behind the Scenes : Pumpkin Mushrooms

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Here is a behind-the-scenes look at the development of an upcoming halloween project, making mushrooms from pumpkins and squash. We are always trying to dream up new things to do with pumpkins each October, and I was casting about for a good idea – which came to me on the subway of all places. I …

Make It : Covering Books

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I’ve recently become somewhat obsessed with the idea below – which comes courtesy of our ingenius collecting editor Quy Nguyen. He has lots of beautiful and special books, and he covers them all in semi-transparent vellum. Its so nice because you can still read the text on the covers and spines of the books, but …

Make It : Leaf Printing

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A few saturdays ago I helped to teach a class as part of a free series of artist led workshops for kids at an outdoor sculpture park here in New York. It was a great project, greatly indebted to Laura’s story on leaf printing from several year’s back…We collected leaves from around the park and showed the …

Our Library : Pattern Design

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More from our library… This book, Twentieth Century Pattern Design is a great resource. I bought it when it was first published, and recently realized that it was my inroduction to a lot of design I’d never seen before. Lesley’s Jackson’s writing is really fascinating. The page above is from the section on Scandinavian designers, …

Meet : William Morris

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Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful. It may be a little silly to “introduce” our readers to William Morris, whom I’m sure many of you are familiar with, but I came across this quote the other day and was struck by how perfectly …

Meet : Some of our friends...

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Below are a few images from the new website of our friend Anna Beckman, a former editor for Martha Stewart Kids and crafts department member. A few years ago she began studying calligraphy here in New York and its been amazing to see how skilled she’s become. She’s developed some unusual styles that are derived …