Jump to the inspiration

I get inspiration on a daily basis. I make sure I get inspired by exposing myself constantly to blogs and Instagram and Facebook posts from sewing/creative/artistic people and companies.

That can be great, as I am always exposed to beautiful images and my head is full of ideas of things I would love to make. There are free patterns and ideas all over the internet. Everyone will tell you how they learnt to do ‘such and such’ on Youtube. Oh and the things people ‘pin’ on Pinterest! Things in their thousands. Then there’s the hundreds of magazines and books available in ‘real life’. Temptation a-go-go!

Express yourself creatively - use inspiration!
You just know that there’s a ‘but’ coming don’t you?

You’re right.

Social media

All this inspiration can become overwhelming, as there’s only so much time in the day/week/month/year. So? You have 590 pins on your Pinterest sewing board? How many of those have you actually made? Have you made any of them?

You have 578 followers on Instagram? Wow, yer, that’s cool but what does that do for you? Does it magically give you 24 extra hours a day to make more? To create. To sew. To knit. To quilt. To make jewellery etc.

14 people retweeted your Twitter post about the little Christmas decoration you made? That must be a good feeling and I’m definitely not negating that feeling of having reached that many people who want to show  even more people. Does that get the dishes washed though, in order to give you spare time to do some more work on the tunic you’re making? I highly suspect not.

Am I suggesting that we stop joining in with those social media networks? No I’m not. I just think it can get taken too far and actually stop you getting time to actually make things yourself. I’m guilty of that as much as anyone else. That’s the whole reason I’m writing this post; as a reminder to myself to limit my time on such things.

Finish-a-long sewing club in Cheshire

The Finish-a-long club is a great way to ensure that you get at least one day a month to get on with your sewing projects. Click the photo to get more information and make that commitment to yourself.

Stress

Something which sometimes affects me too about inspiration is stress. Yes, that’s right, inspiration stresses us out at times.

How does something with so many beautiful photos and instructions for clear sewing instruction possibly stress me out, I suspect you’re thinking right now? Most of all it’s linked to the actual source of inspiration, that is, we see a beautiful quilt photo (for example) which someone has made and instantly we consider ourselves unable to make something so gorgeous. We doubt our skill set. Our inner ‘self esteem’ monkeys start jumping up and down telling us to ‘get real’ and move on because there’s no way we could make that as well. Therefore that stops us in our tracks straight away.

We’re telling ourselves not to even consider making anything like that.  We wouldn’t know where to begin, would we?

That’s that. No creating. No loving the process of making something yourself. Bang. Crash. Stop!

I hear and read this all the time and it upsets/frustrates me. Actually, who am I kidding? It also happens to me because I am not immune to that response either. People warn me when booking onto beginner sewing sessions, that they’ll be really hard work in the classes, as they have never been any good at ‘that sort of thing’. The desire is there but the motivating environment has clearly been missing. The fun and sense of achievement has been sorely lacking. I’m not having that in my happy place! No, siree!

Process

Inspiration is supposed to, well… um… inspire you to try things yourself of course. Give it a go. Try it out. Use it as a positive influence in your life.

And just as I was working out how to lay out this post,  I was inspired by Kim Lapacek’s Instagram post about the Project Quilting (season 8) and the new designer Trish Frankland.  I love the sound of these week long challenges, which I suspect will definitely push creative boundaries, due to the short time scale. That scares and excites me at the same time, so I’ll be taking part in that. I’ll squeeze it in somehow, despite it not even being on my radar at all in the planning stages of 2017. That’s how I get inspired! It puts all planning and organisation out of the window, as I’m so keen to do it. Trish’s post about it explains exactly what she says to people who worry too much about the short time span. Her words are:

“Sometimes a quilt gets whomped with the ugly stick, but if you learned something THAT IS ENOUGH. Do it, get it done, and MOVE ON”

Feeling overwhelmed with inspiration

In conclusion, that’s it. Since worrying about your abilities in comparison to others, doesn’t get anything created, just get your hands dirty and make. It’s the process which adds value to your life; not the item itself necessarily.

Happy creating in 2017! Regardless whether it’s wonky or not!

Diane x

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