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Media Interview with Elaine Bennett, deputy editor of PaperCrafter

Hi Elaine, can you tell us a bit more about PaperCrafter – describe a typical reader for us and how many of them are there? In such a competitive market, what makes PaperCrafter different from the other outlets in its sector?

PaperCrafter offers the complete package for keen crafters in love with all things paper. It is the only magazine that comes with a gorgeous, exclusive kit including everything the reader needs to create the beautiful card and papercraft projects shown inside the magazine, meaning they can get started straight away. We also cram in plenty of inspiring ideas, shopping pages and in-depth features. PaperCrafter has more than 30,000 readers, from beginner crafters looking to expand their stash, to experts who love the convenience and value of the kits and designer papers.

The market for arts and crafts publications is huge at the moment, why do you think that is?

For many people, crafting is a calm sanctuary they can escape to when life is getting too hectic. It provides them with the time and space to sit down, unwind, and create something completely unique. The crafting movement is a fight back against our throwaway society; yes, you may be able to buy a similar card in the supermarket for a few pounds, but it won't be individual or invested with the love that a handcrafted item is. Crafting is also a brilliant way to unite different generations and even different sectors of the community. We hear from our readers on a daily basis about the amazing therapeutic benefits that crafting has brought to their lives; reigniting childhood passions and giving them an enormous sense of achievement.

How do you think this market will evolve in the future?

While some print publications are seeing their readership take a dip due to digital advances, we are lucky in that crafting is a very tactile sector. One of the main reasons our readers love PaperCrafter is for all the goodies they get with it and this isn't something that could be recreated digitally. We dedicate a lot of time and research into making our kits on-trend and irresistible and I'm always amazed by what new and exciting items we manage to squeeze into each issue's pack.

In terms of content, do you pay for contributions from freelance journalists?

We commission freelance designers to create projects from our kits. The in-house editorial team writes the rest of the content within the magazine.

Do you like them to get in touch with you directly to pitch ideas?

Craft designers looking to be featured in the magazine are welcome to send high-res images of their work to us.

Do you work closely with PRs? What information from PRs is most useful to you?

We are always looking for craft-related prizes for the magazine and website, plus information about new, innovative craft products for our news pages. High-res styled and cut-out images are really useful for us.

When’s the best time for PRs to contact you and when is your deadline for contributions?

PaperCrafter issues are published ten times a year on a five or six week basis so it's best to get in touch with us for deadline information as it changes every month.

You’ve previously worked on several crafts titles (Let’s Knit, Let’s Get Crafting), you must be a keen crafter yourself? Do you have a preference?

I took as many creative subjects at school and college as I was allowed to and have always enjoyed art and crafts. When I started on our sister publication Let's Knit in 2009 I didn't know my knits from my purls so had a crash course introduction to knitting to get me up to speed. Five years later, I adore knitting and crochet and really enjoy the technical aspects of checking the accuracy of patterns when working on my other magazine LGC Knitting & Crochet – getting it all precisely correct appeals to my inner Virgo!

The editorial team at PaperCrafter is tweeting @papercraftermag.

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