At this time of year I find the lists start to overwhelm me. Lists of to-dos for life, lists of to-dos for the kids, lists of to-dos for Xmas and the lists of crafting that fit in to each of those categories. And I find what happens is that I freeze up and kinda stop making. My production (that is normally fairly ongoing because I stick to my lists) slows to almost nothing and I wander about the house and my sewing room a little aimlessly. It's almost as if I have nothing to do when in fact it is the complete opposite.
Hang on a sec - it has been an hot day here and I might grab a beer to keep me company....
OK. Better. So to illustrate my point, on my crafting list at the moment are
- Three pairs of kid shorts from Happy Homemade with the fake fly and pockets (as opposed to the 1hr plain ones)
- Three pairs of matching Xmas pyjamas
- Two frocks for my darling niece
- The birthday dress for my middle small. Her birthday is just two weeks before Xmas which always ups the ante.
Should be done
- A cardy needs to be finished for my SIL
- The almost finished wedding present for my very good friend who got married 2.5 years ago
- Mending etc etc etc.
Just for fun
- A dress for me
- Another scrap cardy for the small (who needs another cardy - not)
- Blah blah blah blah. This list goes on and on and on
Even reading the paragraph above makes me start to feel a little traumatised. Crafting suddenly becomes a chore due to the weight of "have tos" and "should really's" and the "want tos". What is funny about it is that I really want to do all those things. The only reason they are on the list is because I want to do them....and I even have time to get them all done by their deadlines. But not if I don't shake this thing I have going on - the not-doing-ness, the lack of inspiration, the overwhelm, the not knowing where to start. It is a disease.....
So what to do. The answer for me is one that I haven't consciously come up with. So it isn't my idea but it is what happens. Suddenly something snaps. Some 15yr old I-wanna-do-what-I-wanna-do angst comes flying out of my soul, I pick up some materials and decide to craft something completely random. Something that isn't on the list and hasn't even been pondered to this point.
Case in point. In the last month there have been two.
A hat. What is so odd about that I hear you say? Nothing except that we are heading in to summer and I already have about 5 knitted hats. Today was 27 degrees - (about 80 for those of you who like your temperatures in F) - but this is what I threw in the bag on the way to camping. Random. Who wants to do a tubular cast on while bush camping with no access to the internet to remind her of how to do one - me apparently. What makes it worse is that I am not even sure that I like the colours...
Patchwork. Same deal as above - what is so odd about that? The biggest thing is a little bit tricky to admit - I don't really like doing patchwork (sssshhhhhh!). I really like it when other people do it, it can be just stunning! but I don't enjoy it myself. On the particular day in question I had many other hideously boring things to do like vacuum and make (another) (nutritious) dinner. I was feeling a little antsy so gave myself 25min to play. I had seen an instagram photo from the lovely Arounna from Bookhou the day before and felt inspired to do some linen patchwork. Random. And the thing is that once I started I couldn't stop. Or rather my 15 year old self didn't want to stop. I took the kids out to takeaway for dinner, didn't vacuum even though we had guests arriving and did my first ever log cabin. I have no idea what for....
But that is the thing about crafting and passion. When you have lost it, sometimes you need to do something random to get the juices going. For some people it might be walking away completely or doing a different-to-you craft, but for others it might just be to start something new. In my case giving myself the space to follow a couple of random ideas which weren't on the list meant that I felt a little bit of freedom. Free of the lists and the have and should and want tos. Free from the responsibilities of life which allowed me to just Craft. Y'know?? And that little bit of freedom seems to have been enough to get me back on the crafting horse. I cut out two pairs of kid shorts last night and they are already 1/3 sewn up.
Bring on the passion!
Anyone else out there a bit stuck? What do you do when you are feeling crafty list overwhelm or just a loss of your passion? I'd love some more ideas....