Meet one of our contributors for Girl Meets Party, Jordan Nel. Jordan is a writer, educator, artist, and all-around lover of words. An English teacher by day, she is also a classically trained singer and pursues creativity in many forms—from singing and writing, to creating artwork and designing spaces to host family and friends.
Tell us a little about yourself.
My catch-all phrase to describe myself is “an all-around lover of words.” I love the art and craft of writing and reading, but I also love poetic expression through music and the beauty that comes from communicating with others—through entertaining, hosting, and teaching.
What’s your favorite thing to create?
It’s difficult to choose one favorite thing to create! I enjoy creating beautiful spaces around my home and in my classroom, as well as trying new recipes with my husband, Bertie (we’ve recently gotten into the world of sous vide cooking at home and I’ve discovered a love for making bread!). At the moment, I am enjoying playing around with graphic design and new pastel and watercolor techniques for children’s book illustrations.
How do you get ideas for your projects?
Inspiration comes to me through books, design magazines, blogs, my students, and my family. In high school, I happened upon a blog with beautiful images of homes, clothing, and art—pretty much everything style-wise you can imagine—and I would print out my favorite images and paste them into a spiral-bound scrapbook. I called it my “idea book” and I still reference it from time to time when I need inspiration. My dog, Mozart, is my inspiration for writing and illustrating children’s stories about the adventures I imagine he would have in a world of make-believe.
Have you always been crafty? If not, when did it start?
My mother has always had a great sense of design and I grew up watching her decoupage Mary Engelbreit artwork to our childhood bedroom walls and complete other crafty projects around the house. I think my own desire to be crafty started at a young age because of her. My grandmother, like her mother before her, discovered a latent talent for oil painting and I used to arrange bowls of fruit and the like for still life paintings of my own when I was seven or eight years old.
Tell us a bit about your family! We want to know about you!!
I am the quintessential peace-making middle sibling with an older sister and a younger brother. The three of us are very close to each other and our parents. My dad and I have always bonded over being middle children, since he is one, too. My older sister and her husband have a sweet little girl who will turn two this year and I absolutely love being her “auntie.” My husband and I were married last April, and I have recently gained wonderful in-laws who live in South Africa, where my husband grew up.
What will you be writing about for Girl Meets Party?
I am excited to write about new baking and sous vide recipes I’ve discovered, creating a beautiful space to host friends in small quarters, illustrating, and writing for Girl Meets Party!
What are you most excited for in the new year?
I am most excited for continuing to build our new home with my husband, reading good books alongside my students, growing in my faith, and learning more about the things I love.
Share your favorite quote with us.
“Friendship is born at the moment when one man says to another, ‘What! You too? I thought that no one but myself…’” —C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves
Jordan is a writer, educator, artist, and all-around lover of words. An English teacher by day, she is also a classically trained singer and pursues creativity in many forms—from singing and writing, to creating artwork and designing spaces to host family and friends.