Adventures

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas….

Decorated for Christmas

We had neighbours over this week, so I was happy to put all the decorations in place for Christmas. It is so wonderful to have a good old fashioned fire place!

Decorated Christmas Tree

I use the tree in the alcove all year round – decorating it seasonally, so there were Easter eggs in Spring and flowers in the summer. Now it has been decorated with lovely silver leaves giving it a wintery look.

Dresser Christmas Decorations

My favourite colour is this delicate ‘vintage’ blue – the dresser makes a great place to store my collection of china and the lovely beads and baubles seem to compliment it well.

Nordic red and while christmas

I had this fabric in my stash for a while – it is such a bright Chrissmassy colour I decided to make a fitted cover for my little coffee tables and I am rather pleased with the corner pleating.

Barney the staffie Christmas Photo Competition

Here is Barney’s entry for the Local vets photo competition, I must say he was a very good model not bothered at all by the bow and the hat!

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and lets hope for a peaceful, Happy New Year.

creative, hand sewing, needle felting

Don’t beat yourself up over Unfinished Projects

Vintage thread

Speak to anyone creative about their stash and they will admit to having a pile of UFO’s or unfinished objects. It’s like a guilty secret – I also suffered from the same – it wasn’t until I moved out of a home of 10 years that I was faced with a mountain of half completed projects – I felt incredible sadness for all the waste and money that I had quite simply thrown away.

I have changed the way I think about these recently, because guilt stifles creativity and experimentation. There are times when we need to develop a technique or experiment with a new hobby – and it really is an opportunity to grow and stretch ourselves.

experimentation

Permission to play

Giving yourself permission to play is key to finding new ways to develop your skills and improve your techniques. Release yourself from the obligation to have something to show at the end of the session and see the time and materials as an investment of your skills rather than judging things by outcome.

Don’t cheat on materials too, use the same material you intend to use on your project if you can – like a recipe – each element of your project will affect its overall effectiveness, using a lovely drapery fabric like georgette will not be the same if your toile is made from calico.

Vintage thread

Recognise what to keep and what to bin

Sometimes things go wrong, sometimes we hit on a block and what we hoped to do just did not work out. Recently I was making cushions and for some reason the bias binding was getting in a right tangle around my piping – yes, I could have spent hours unpicking, but in the end, I simply cut it off and threw it away. I did not keep the binding as a reminder of my failure, I just found another way to do it.

Sometimes letting go of what doesn’t work – is the best way to release yourself from the guilt. Keeping the project in a plastic carrier bag in an ever growing pile will stifle your experimentation because it is a reminder of ‘failure’. Don’t let your sewing space get cluttered up with negativity. Just let it go.

Give yourself some time

Sometimes you hit a block on a piece of work, you just don’t know how to move forward with something. These are the projects you need to keep, but don’t hide them away in plastic bags. Leave them out, on a noticeboard, have a fabric box or use a sewing basket to keep these objects in and now and then take them out.

This piece of needle felting (above) did not feel finished to me – although my creative friends suggested I frame it. I kept on looking at it, but could not see a way forward.

Then – I came across it again this week, (you can see from the state above that was over four years ago!) Suddenly, looking at it, I knew exactly what I wanted to do, and I began the process of completing it. It only took an hour or so, but it was delightful progress.

needle felting

I just needed time – and that is what you also need to be creative, patience with yourself. Be kind to yourself about your Unfinished projects, see them as work in progress and allow the creativity to come without guilt or reprimand. Most importantly, have fun!