Friday, 23 May 2014

50 Things I love About Creating

Oh, look:


I think we can agree that I need to tidy up. It's pretty obvious (although it's definitely not pretty). but what to do? what to do? Tidying up takes time. If I'm tidying, I'm not making. And i do love to make. Sometimes here they'll tell me to just give my hands a rest. You don't have to be doing something while you watch TV. You could just - watch TV. 


But when I think about it, think back to a different sitting room, with another TV, I realise I wasn't brought up to be Not doing. My mum was always making something: quickest knitter in the west, she even worked while sitting on the beach. We used to build sandcastles to the rhythm of the waves and the click of the needles on our new school sweaters.

Is that why I do it? Because that's what I know?
How about a list? We've all got our reasons: how many can you name? Quick, in ten minutes, broadly speaking or in tiny details. Can we get to fifty? What's a favourite thing to make right now and why? If you feel yourself moving towards a new craft, what is it offering you that feels right, right now? Let's help ourselves to a creative weekend and try for

50 Things I Love About Creating

I'll start and I'd love you to add, expand or argue...

- In the past making things meant having something I wouldn't have been able to afford any other way

- Making things connects me to the other women in our family, even the ones I never had the chance to meet

- It's a chance to play with colour and pattern without having to resort to redecorating the whole house

- Making things is more fun than making the dinner (though I get that some of you good cooks are great at creating with food)

- Knitting is calming. So is cross stitch. Creating can soothe BUT

- pushing yourself to the next level can be exhilarating, like reaching the top of a mountain, even if that feeling is hard to explain to non believers.

- Making it yourself lets you have exactly what you want, in a size that fits, in a colour that suits

- And you can personalise presents for friends and family too

- Making things has taught me patience and perseverance. Once, ripping it out and starting again made me want to cry. Now I'm happy to have another go

- Making things can be a distraction, a way to forget

- and also, sometimes, a defence mechanism. Ever knitted in a waiting room? or when you didn't want to talk?

- But making things makes friends, too. I had to go online to share scrapbooking and that's how I met all of you

- Every object I make has a story to tell. It offers a way of remembering what else was going on in life when I was making it

- and maybe a little bit of me hopes it's a way of leaving something behind

- My hobbies give my family a starting point for Christmas present ideas

- which is closely related to the fact that making things means time for me

- and keeps me away from bathroom cleaning

- Being able to create has kept me going through illness in the past. Years ago a doctor told me she thought I was lucky being able to make things because she went to bed every night hoping she would wake up being good at cooking or gardening so she would have something for her retirement. That made me think

- Completing a project - snipping that last thread, gluing down that last alpha - is just as satisfying as -mmm, all sorts of things

- Starting a new project  gives me the perfect excuse to look for a book on the subject. Or a magazine. I love a magazine

From High In The Sky Mag Mad for Scrap365
A page I made for Scrap365

How many is that? twenty? What have I left out? Because we've got a way to go yet, to reach 50 Things I Love About Creating....



24 comments:

Ruth said...

50 Things I love about Creating ... the opportunity to restore my equilibrium (which is cheaper than therapy).

scrappyjacky said...

I love your page....I'm mad about mags as well....they could easily become an obsession if I let them!!
If keeping me away from bathroom cleaning was the only reason I crafted....it would be a good enough reason.
Like you....the click of knitting needles and the whir of the sewing machine were the backdrop to my childhood.....I'm sure I could think of 50 reasons I love crafting if I put my mind to it.

Melissa said...

...because it's FUN!
...because it's like being in Kindergarten again with scissors and glue and paper.
...because it preserves our memories and allows us to re-live moments.

There are so few magazines now that it's hard to find them - I've looked twice for the latest Scrap365 here but no luck! :(

Ladkyis said...

because doing something connects me with others, most of whom I will never meet face to face.

It connects me with my granddaughter in ways I never expected.

because stretching myself in a craft gives me back my self confidence

That'll do off the top of my head

Linda said...

I think the thing I like most about crafting is that I love playing with colour. For example - I love to highlight my photos with a great background in my scrapbooking. Using different wools and fabrics- mmmm!

Deb @ PaperTurtle said...

I love reading your list, Sian, and that scrapbook page of you and your magazines is adorable! Like you, I have never been one to just sit and watch TV...my hands just want to keep moving!

I'll look forward to reading more of your 50 things in the future.

Karen said...

Like you I have to be doing all the time and I like to reward myself with some craft time when I have done a task I didn't want to do.

alexa said...

What a super post :). Thought-provoking and inviting a response at the same time. Well, I love creating because it takes me away totally from what I normally do! Your page is, as ever, wonderful - my stack of craft books is better than the local library's :).

Nathalie said...

What an excellent subject and goal! Avoiding cleaning chores is a perfect reason and I also agree with Melissa's reasons above.... The connection with others (even if it is only an electronic one!) is priceless... another reason, that might be hard to admit is how the appreciation from peers is a huge motivational factor for me to create, especially for someone in a job that doesn't provide that type of positive feedback or if you are simply not working....
i look forward to the rest of the discussion!

helena said...

It has to be a really good or visual or complicated plot type of TV programme for me to just watch.

Love your list. some more things I love about creating - it can take me to a zen like state of mind; there are so many different creative skills to try out; the process is absorbing and challenging and satisfying; the tada moment at the end is like a boost of endorphins; because it has all kind of list making opportunities !

Helen said...

so true.... I feel really connected with these 50, I'd add that when I offer a handmade present, the pleased smile on the person's face is so gratifying for me. Beautiful mindful post.

Jimjams said...

Lovely post!

Jo Murray said...

It's all absolutely true. Perhaps working in a mess is inspiring?...an unexpected glimpse of something peeking out from under a pile of stuff might lead you in another direction.

Cheri said...

Like you I grew up with a mother who was NEVER not doing or making. She even crocheted in the car (if she wasn't driving)! She probably believed in the saying "idle hands are the devil's playthings". I grew up crafting and can't imagine my life without it. To me being creative is as essential as breathing. On those rare occasions when I truly get "in the zone" - lost in what I am doing - it is restorative to my soul and gives me so much energy. I love that in creating beautiful things, I am (hopefully) leaving the world better than I found it. And I agree with Ruth - it's cheaper than therapy! That's what I came here to say, but she beat me to it.

Fiona@Staring at the Sea said...

Ah great post Sian. I agree/identify with pretty much all your reasons. When I am dressmaking, I feel so connected to my lovely talented Gran. Although I'm quite sure she'd be shaking her head in horror at some of my methods!

Sandra said...

Great post Sian, I pretty much smiled all the way through reading your post :)

I think I create as if I didn't my head might burst with all the things I want to try lol. Plus, I kinda of love shopping for crafting goodness ... It's my way of helping the economy lol

Sandie said...

Great post Sian.
I've just spent 3 days with an amazing bunch of woman crafting. We shared ideas, banter, materials, and food. Connecting with other women in this way makes crafting extra special for me, and I nearly completed 3 new handmade books as well.
I can tick lots of your list too, and I have photos ready and ideas for a book to make about how my Nan & I used to make things together.

Jo said...

Great post and lovely layout. When I craft in front of the TV I feel like I haven't wasted a moment. I love to create for others and if I'm working on a gift for someone I get so excited imagining how pleased they'll be with it :)

Jennie Hart said...

I have tried a few crafts since I started playing with paper a few years ago, I haven't always crafted and no-one is more surprised than me that I have taken up a creative hobby! There are three things that draw me back in when I haven't had time and feel a bit disconnected from it. 1. The calm that comes over me once I am back in to it, as others have said, therapy, and I wholeheartedly believe in that. 2. The ta-dah moment when you have thought of a great idea and realised it even if it's not re-inventing the wheel. 3. A cosy afternoon in december curled up and weighing through those 4 big fat volumes of our year and remembering so many already forgotten things.

Great post, looking forward to mess-making this evening, Springwatch first though.

Amy said...

I still have issues with making digital pages and calling them creative - I think I am perpetually stuck in the mind set that being creative means glue, paint, wool or fabric. Anyway, one thing I absolutely love, and it gives me a lot of joy, is teaching/talking to others who are learning to take photos - just like me .... my brother and I have recently had a great time together!

Maria Ontiveros said...

Because . . .
it helps me work through issues;
people say nice things about what I make;
blog fodder;
it helps me see the world in a new light;
it makes other people happy;
it's a way to record my life at a certain point in time;
because it completes me.
Rinda

Lisa said...

I particularly relate to your first point and the one about not cleaning the bathroom :-)
I create because it's time for me...

Gail said...

Great list Sian. I love the one about it being more fun than making dinner.

tidbitsandtreasures2011 said...

Making things forces me to focus, to ignore for however long it takes to finish, the many other opportunities (distractions?) there are. That is, in and of itself, a blessing because when I'm intent on one thing it seems that both my mind and body relax.

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