Dudes Craft, Too: Michael Sikler

Hello, hello! Today I’m bringing you an interview with a guy who is as crafty as I am. I’ve seldom met anyone who does as many different crafts as I do.

Michael has such good points and a unique perspective on things. It’s an honor and a pleasure to have him on my blog today.

I’ll have all his links at the end of this post.

What is your name and in which country do you currently reside?

Michael Sikler, USA

How did you first become involved in card making?

I was doing some research on the Cricut and came across some how to videos where they were making cards. I thought, “Hmm. Let me give this a try!”

What do you enjoy most about card making?

I’m a super creative person and this was a new outlet for me. I find it to be very relaxing and I like to challenge myself to make a card out of all of my paper scraps.

Stereotypically card making is considered by many to be a hobby in which only females participate. Have you experienced any judgement or discrimination based on this stereotype?

I think most crafts are considered to be more of a female thing. However I have never had any issues with craft discrimination. I feel women are drawn to male crafters and are more willing to buy things from us.

Do you feel that, as a male card maker, you bring any experiences or attributes to the craft that you might not otherwise if you were female?

I tend to think outside the box in all the things I do. I think that, in general, men can bring more of a funny, silly mix to card making. I’ve always been drawn to funny cards in the store myself. I think for a lot of men it can be harder to give someone a mushy ‘I love you’ type card; however we can make those if need be.

What is the best thing about being a male card maker?

My favorite part of being a male card maker is going to a stamp convention and getting the side eye!

What is the most challenging?

I just can’t do flowers and butterflies! I also struggle with what to do with all the cards I make. I’ve found that I become attached to many of them and want to keep them for myself. It’s fun to go back and look at them each holiday. They’re kind of like old photos.

What changes, if any, would you like to see happen in the card making industry as far as male cardmakers are concerned?

I would like to see more masculine stamp sets out there. Maybe a line called ‘Man Stamps’.

What drew you to card making?

All of the supplies! I’m a bit of a craft hoarder and a firm believer in the more supplies the better.

Do you do any other crafts?

Yes, tons. I also make wreaths, door hangers, wooden signs, Cricut stuff, and I do a lot of sewing projects as well.

Most of my crafts are one of a kind. It’s the Gemini in me; it’s hard to make the same thing twice as I become bored.

Have you always been creative?

Most definitely! Growing up we had a creative aunt who always came to our house around the holidays and in the summers. She taught us crafts. We did a lot of macramé projects.
She was an Auntie Mame type of aunt so we made a lot of crazy things. I try to carry on her legacy by teaching children how to craft.

Where do you draw your inspiration from?

Now days I find a lot of interesting things on Pinterest and Instagram that make my brain explode with ideas. Good dance mixes help a lot as well.

Is there anything you struggle with in terms of card making?

I struggle with finding time to make them more often. I’ve also found that I get obsessed when I start and find it difficult to stop.

What has been your proudest card making moment or achievement?

I would think being asked to do this interview. I’m very honored to have this opportunity.

What, if anything, would you change about the card making community?

I would like to see more male crafters come together and support each other. I have a few great friends I’ve made but many others seem to be uninterested in making new friends.

I try to support any male crafter I see out there. I may be kind of “stalkerish” at first but it’s only because I’m so excited to see a fellow man crafting. It’s quite funny at my age that I have never seen another male crafter until I joined Instagram. I still get excited when I see a new one pop up.

What, if anything, would you change about the card making industry?

I find this to be the most expensive hobby I have ever done. I just don’t see how a stamp/die set can cost so much. I think it stops a lot of people from learning how to make cards. There are ways to make cards without all the fun supplies but they’re all so cute that it’s hard to stop yourself from buying sometimes.

How would you describe your card making style?

I seem to like a nice, clean and simple look. I make a lot of crazy cards; sometimes a bit nasty! I also like to use vintage images in my cards from old tv shows or my favorite; vintage Christmas. I also enjoy coloring but my cheap marker set has dried up which has lead to me using more watercolor pencils and markers.

I tend to focus mostly on Halloween and Christmas cards. I also make what I call “cheater cards” which are premade card bases and build on them. I’m not good with all that measuring stuff.

What words of wisdom or encouragement do you have for others?

Start small. You don’t need all the fun stuff to develop your own style. Get a few stamp sets to start and have fun. Always remember not to throw away paper scraps. You’d be amazed at what you can create from them.

Michael, thank you again for being a part of this series. I know you said that being asked to be interviewed is one of your proudest moments but I want you to know that having all you talented, crafty guys on my blog is one of my proudest and greatest achievements as a creative person.

You are a terrific person and I’m so glad to have been able to get to know you a bit more.

If you’d like to see more of Michael’s work (and you will, trust me!) you can find him

On Facebook

On Instagram

Until next time,

Violet, rose, strike a pose,

Samantha