Slow start

  Much like the way Christmas derailed a month of eating well, the holidays, too, have let me struggling to get back into a craft book/making groove.

So, overwhelmed with the books on my shelves, I picked up DIY, Dammit: A Practical Guide to Curse-Free Crafting, by Joselyn Hughes

  A copy found it’s way to me, but I wasn’t sure how many of the projects would speak to me. (As much as I love to make all kinds of things, I don’t dabble in *all* crafts.) But, having received a wonderful new glue gun for Christmas, I was especially hoping to find some craft-spiration to test it out.
I started leafing through it, and immediately I spotted the words: Internet perfection does nothing for DIY. It actually makes it harder.

Those were the words I needed after starting—and restarting—my coloring copper with Prismacolor pencils. More to come about that on Sunday. (And there was the failed soldering class in December!)

I should preface all of this by saying that earlier in the day I was looking at the website for Craftcation Conference, and I felt that feeling of “Why do I bother?” I’m one of thousands—if not millions— of people making stuff and hoping people like it and, maybe, buy some of it.

I know all of the reasons why I should put my worries aside and just do what I do in honesty and to the best of my abilities. (Just this morning I heard a colleague disparage his photography and I couldn’t believe it. His work is amazing!! Which proves that we’re all susceptible doubts and worries, especially those of us with steady 40-hour-a-week gigs that we enjoy.)

Anywho … later that day I was listening to this week’s episode of Spontaneanation, and part of the introductory interview was about accepting how working on a piece of something is productivity. In this case the interviewee talked about spending time cutting out images for collage cards that he likes to make. Much like the words about imperfection, I needed to hear that, too, because I’ve been feeling a bit overwhelmed with projects I’ve started that seem to have no end in sight. Well, one sock will be finished tonight, I just know it.

  
And then, getting back to that first positive message, I got a notice today that a copy of The Art of Mistakes: Unexpected Painting Techniques & the Practice of Creative Thinking, by Melanie Rothschild was waiting for me at my local library branch.

  
The universe has spoken. Clearly. Directly. So, I need to shut my mouth and keep on keeping on. The only wrong move, for me, would be to be paralyzed by doubt and worry. I need to work on projects in pieces and as I can. And, if I make mistakes, so what?! Prototypes are OK. Just trying is great! Making time to play and then use that time to play/make begets creativity, or so I’ve found.

p.s. Grace Jones’ memoir was also waiting for me at the library. What in the world is the universe trying to tell me with that one?

Time to get back to it

Oh the new year. While New Year’s Eve is a pretty lame holiday, I don’t mind the natural reminder to look back on the past year and make some plans for the new year. In an email from Craftsy, the message was to resolve to do more of what you love. I can get behind that.
I was thinking that reading for 10 minutes a day would be nice. So would coloring.

The beau and I stated a puzzle last night, which was great until we finished the border this morning and realized that finishing th3 2,000-piece “Starry Night” puzzle was going to take way too long and too much table space. So, back in the box it went. Maybe we’ll pop into Columbia City’s Retroactive Kids to look for a new one before seeing the new Star Wars film today

Anywho, back to looking back at the last year. 2015 was good. Busy. Productive in many ways. I had a streak of blogging that surprised me. And then the holidays showed up. I think I could have handled the work for holiday shows and my previous blogging commitments (to myself), but my vow to make only one gift snowballed — as it always does. And that snowball took over all spare moments.
I made:
A shark tail afghan for my great niece. (Like the popular mermaid tail afghans, but gray and with the fins turned 90 degrees.)  

A scarf for my youngest nephew.
Three “Cultivate Goodness” screen-printed t-shirts (for my oldest nephew, the niece’s beau and my brother-in-law).
A t-shirt for my sister with iron-on letters. (I learned that iron-on letters are not my friend. If anyone has any suggestions, I’m all ears.)
A poncho for the oldest niece
A necklace for my sister-in-law.
An enameled necklace for my friend Sarah.
A bracelet for mom.  

A wrap for Pennie.
Socks for my unicorn.  

And, I’ve recently started another pair of socks, for Asha.

Since Christmas I’ve also made a wrap, poncho and granny square scarf for myself.  

 I’ve started three scarves and two ponchos. I need to focus. I’m ready to be a little self indulgent and just make stuff for myself. Or, stuff that I want to make, not stuff I have to make.

Today I need pick the next craft book to go through/evaluate. I’ve also decided I need to try using colored pencils on copper. The gesso is drying on the copper blanks right now.

I think I’ll break out the Prismacolors and keep streaming The Flop House to fuel my activities.
See you Thursday!