About

oxbowIt’s me, Amanda.

Hi there! I’m Amanda, and I live in the charming town of Saugerties, located in the Hudson Valley of New York state (yes, a whole other state exists outside of NYC!) … Anyway, I’ve always been a maker, but my main crafts have really become knitting and sewing. I find something very therapeutic and centering about always having a project (or several) to be working on.

Some of you may know that I used to have YouTube channel that focused on knitting, but I had to stop (or at least take a LONG pause) due to a demanding full-time career. However, I’m still fairly active on Instagram @OldSaltCraftCo and would love to connect with you there!

About My Book Reviews

In summer 2021, I decided to pivot my online presence to not just knitting/sewing but to also include my other favorite hobby – reading! I start every day with a book, and if I’m not too tired, I’ll knit and read at the same time. Before I go to my day job as head of strategic programs for a tech company, I love to be gripped by a mystery or dive into the intricacies of current events or learn how to be a better leader to my team.

Other Places Where I Review Books:

    • NetGalley – I started requesting ARCs in July through NetGalley, and always aim to publish a review there and elsewhere within 30 days of the pub date (unless otherwise preferred by the publisher)
    • Instagram – where I’m steadily growing my bookstagram following! My audience there is a cross-section of book lovers and knitters.
    • Goodreads – where I log all of the books I’ve read and want to read, and I have newly committed to writing comprehensive reviews for every book I finish.

Professional Reader

What I read:

thrillers, mysteries, general adult fiction, current events, politics, feminism, anti-racism, LGBTQ+, literary fiction, business and leadership non-fiction, and anything highly rated!

Review Style:

My typical review is more focused on the writing elements of the book that drew me in (or turned me off) rather than just providing synopses, which people can easily get elsewhere. I try to include a line or two about what the book is about and then jump into the qualities that make the book special. I find this helps people really know if a book is for them or not. As can be seen by comments on IG, people find my reviews helpful!

IMG_8862About Old Salt Craft Co.

When I was a kid, my mom and dad – I’m an only child – used to take me to Ocean City, New Jersey during the summer. We’d pack up our blue Chevy Astro van and spend entire weekends on the beach and in the ocean, enjoying nights in our little “camper.” My dad, a U.S. Navy veteran, would point out the “old salts” who seemed to waste away on the powder blue benches along the boardwalk – crusty old sailors, with yellow beards, faces like road maps, and woolen hats.

I was often permitted to buy one small souvenir during most visits, and I guess because I sensed Dad’s admiration for the old salts, I often preferred to make my souvenir selection at a shop called “Old Salt” despite its lack of toys or hermit crabs or any of the other items available for purchase at the dozens of stores actually intended for children.

The original Old Salt is out of business now (I checked), and sadly my dad never lived long enough to become an Old Salt himself. But I can still remember how my artsy streak got its start – sitting in that little camper, at a table that could also be turned into a bed, as seagulls called out and the salt air wafted through the windows. I would pass the time drawing stick figures and cats and unicorns on paper plates, while my mom lovingly made breakfast always humming a little tune to herself and my dad fawned over my paper plate creations. A few art classes and some knitting lessons from my best friend (and LOTS of YouTube tutorials) later, and I suppose that’s how Old Salt Craft Co. came to be.

Thanks for supporting crafters and artists!