I Spy DIY Style Launches Today, Jenni Radosevich Shares All The Deets

Even those of us who once believed we could hardly cut a straight line with a scissor, let alone thread a needle, have been super-inspired by the DIY movement. One major reason behind the craze: awesome DIY pros like Jenni Radosevich of I Spy DIY, who constantly provides the steps to recreate the runway-inspired pieces we'd love to wear and trends we're ready to test drive, all in easy-to-follow and cost-effective projects. Now, Jenni has taken her expertise off the browser and into your hands, in her first book available today, I Spy DIY Style.
But, before we get down to business with a few DIY projects we've been diying dying to try for ourselves, we got a chance to ask Jenni what we really wanted to know: Does she really wear all her DIY creations? And can even the least crafty of us really create something worth bragging about? (That would be yes to both). Read on for the rest of our exclusive interview.
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Party alert: Want to celebrate DIY-style? Join Jenni Radosevich this Thursday at Coach in NYC for a toast to her just-released book I Spy DIY Style.
When: Thursday, April 19 from 6 to 8 p.m.
Where: Coach, 143 Prince Street (near West Broadway); 212-473-6925.
I Spy DIY Style, $14.95, available at Amazon.
Photo: Courtesy of I Spy DIY
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How did you get your start DIYing?
"I have always been a crafty girl, growing up in Wisconsin I always created my own style: thrifing clothes, making friendship bracelets, and covering everything I owned with tie dye and puffy paint (I was not afraid of multiple pops of color). When I moved to New York, on a tight budget, I continued to make the trends I was seeing in magazines and on the runway. I got a great response from my coworkers at InStyle, which lead to a story in the mag, then a column, and then a book, I Spy DIY Style, out today!"

Does your ability to craft come naturally? How long did it take to work your way up to the four-scissor skill level? (Ed note: The number of scissors indicate the difficultly of each DIY project in the book.)
"I’ve always been on the creative side (math is my mortal enemy) and, from the beginning, liked putting a personal spin on my outfits. DIY can sometimes take some trial and error — I have a lopsided dress from a sewing class I took in middle school to prove it — but in the book, I wanted to make projects for every skill level. Even the more advanced projects are ones that, with a little practice, anyone can recreate."

Photo: Courtesy of I Spy DIY
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Be honest: how often to do wear your own DIY recreations? Do you have a favorite piece? "I honestly wear DIY everyday! I am obsessed with wearing a ridiculous amount of the bracelets I make. Whenever I DIY a new one, I add it to the stack on my wrists. I also have a pair of faux studded DIY flats from my book that I wear on the regular; you will never believe what the “studs” are made of!"

Tell us about one of your most challenging projects you've taken on?
"My book, hands down. It was the biggest DIY project I have ever taken on, and I could not be more proud of how it turned out!"

Photo: Courtesy of I Spy DIY
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What's one of the simplest DIYs that anyone can try, AND created a finish product worth bragging about?
"My bracelets! I wear my button bracelet and colorful wrap ones everyday and always get compliments. Once you've got those perfected, try my chain and rhinestone bracelet, it is a showstopper, and so popular it is being put into production this summer by the amazing New York jewelry brand, Chloe & Isabel."

What advice can you give to people who think they're just not crafty enough to attempt a DIY project?
"Start with a simple one. Once you experience the excitement of making something, the instant gratification of wearing it, the compliments, and being able to say you did it yourself, you will be hooked."

Photo: Courtesy of I Spy DIY
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How did I Spy DIY Style come about? What will we find in the book that we won’t be able to read on your blog?
"I was lucky to be approached by Random House in 2010 to do a DIY book based on my website and column in InStyle. The projects in the book are based on runway, celebrity and vintage photos that I loved at the time, and would also be on trend for years to come. An added bonus: It is packed with projects from designers, and tips from my favorite bloggers.
"On my site you will find more jewelry. Over the last year I found it is my favorite thing to make and readers love it, so maybe my next book will be all jewelry!"

How long did it take to complete the book? Did all DIYs make it to the final cut? What were some of the highlights of the process?
"Being from magazines and online, I am used to a quick turn around, but the book process is a little less than two years. My part of making the projects, photographing, writing, and the model shoot was done in a jam-packed four months. One absolute highlight was the photoshoot with Jamie Beck, from the site From Me to You, and my blogger models Jessica (What I Wore), Christine (My Style Pill), Kim (Eat Sleep Wear) and Alison [Kelly] (Project Runway and her line, Dahl). We had so much fun and the photos were gorgeous."

Photo: Courtesy of I Spy DIY
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With summer coming up, what are the major trends you think we need to incorporate, and how can we DIY them into the mix? "Neon is a big one, and it's so easy to add into your wardrobe with a little DIY. Paint the cap toes of your flats a bright color, make a friendship bracelet with electric colors, or weave a neon ribbon through the chain strap of a cross body bag."

How do most high-end designers respond to pro DIYers, like yourself, who are using runway looks as inspiration?
"So far, everyone has been a big fan of the DIY movement. I think if someone really wants to buy the designer version, they will. I don’t really think it competes with high-end designers."

What's the next big DIY project you'd like to take on? And, what's the next step in your career?
"So many amazing things are in the works. I am traveling around the country with my book in the next couple months, and doing DIY workshops all over. I am also excited about my jewelry collaboration with Chloe & Isabel, and hope to come out with even more pieces in the future. And, I have I few other projects coming up that I promise to share with you soon!"

Photo: Courtesy of I Spy DIY
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