Be more crafty.
Guest Blog post by Rachel
Whether you're a young mama, a busy student, or chained to a cubicle in an office it's hard to feel like there is enough time to start, much less finish, a craft project but the new year is a great time to make some space in your life for a new hobby or recommit to sneaking in regular craft time! It's one of the most refreshing things I can do for myself when my day has been full of picking up after little ones and reminding fingers to stay out of noses because it gives my nerves a break and lets my imagination take over for awhile.
One of the best ways to make that easy on yourself is to carve out a little space in your room/home that is always waiting for you when inspiration strikes. Keep a vintage suitcase full of yarn and hooks under your bed or a wooden crate full of paint tubes and brushes in your hall closet. Find a way to sneak your sewing machine onto the dining room table until you someday have a whole corner or room (gasp!) that belongs to you!
Learn to work in small steps rather than needing to finish something in one sitting. Often times I'm either feeling overwhelmed with the size of a project or get frustrated that I won't be able to knock it out easily and put it off thinking I'll do it when I have more time/motivation. Working in small steps not only helps you to set attainable goals, it keeps your project moving forward to completion.
I used to have an iPhone sleeve with the saying 'Idle hands are the devil's tools' that I've adopted as my crafting motto. You only have to look at the beautifully detailed samplers from ages past to know that women were able to get a lot done when they kept their fingers busy. There are days when I'd rather just decompress in front of the latest episode of Modern Family but one can still decompress while crocheting granny squares. Steal back some of that couch time and see how it feels!
Gather visual inspiration, save project ideas, experiment with color palettes, and let it all simmer in your head. Take a local or online class to learn how to sew or watch everyYouTube video ever posted on how to develop your own film. Finding a few crafty friends and getting the support of people in your life (especially if you share a dining room table)will help you keep this new habit and motivate you to work through any dry spells that come your crafty way.
Give yourself time, space, and a little patience when you're starting out. Soon you'll be reaping the benefits of an exercise that not only refreshes your spirit, it'll get you some fabulous new curtains!
If you're looking for something with a little bit of structure to help you get started there are a variety of resources at your fingertips. The Purl Bee offers a variety of knitting, stitching, and sewing tutorials (for free!) for those of you with a little bit of crafting know how under your belt. Try your hand at simple sewing projects with either of Amy Karol's books, available here. Browse a few blogs and see what they offer and then get lost in a few Flickr groups to whet your appetite.
This is your year to make crafting a part of your regular life and enjoy all of the unexpected ways it creates space in your head for reflection, draws you into an online community, and develops your confidence as you discover a new talent or two!