Praire Poppins had just an inspiring post up yesterday with lists of ideas for handmade gifts for the holidays. I love reading her blog and often wish I could be that relaxed about making things on a regular basis. I’m still in a mode where I feel like that is a “hobby” for my “spare time”. This is nuts, I know. But I’m working on it slowly.
Charlie also had a good post up about the nature of creativity the other day. He’s addressing a different audience but I think his stages of the creative process make a lot of sense. And they really help those of us who struggle with the “I’m not creative” issue to see what it really looks like and how to nurture it. And yes, I struggle with that, too. I have long thought that I wasn’t creative. Quilting and knitting have really brought me a long way with the creativity but it still feels quite dangerous when I step outside certain frameworks. Designing quilts felt safe because I didn’t have to draw anything but straight sided geometric figures. I’m good at math. I can do that. And I think that gave me the confidence to play with colours and things.
Anyway, the following have been incubating for various lengths of time. Some I just need to go and put into action. Others I need some help with because I don’t actually know what to do next.
Make canvas tote bags. This needs action. Many years ago I did a textile arts class (which is where I met Emily, I think) and I have some heavy canvas that I screen printed for dining room chair seat covers in the basement. Those chairs are long gone and the colours aren’t going to go with my kitchen but I bet they would make good shopping bags.
Make cards with some of my photographs. Yeah, that sounds funny doesn’t it. Me and photographs. But I do have some I took quite a while ago that are interesting close-ups of nature — ice formations, tree bark, etc. I’ve messed around with them a bit in iPhoto and I really like them and they look good printed out. I’ve done a couple of one-off cards but the problem is the size of paper. This one needs help. Is is possible to get square cards made with digital photos for a reasonable price? And how? Or can you buy supplies and print them (probably not ideal)? I don’t even know what to ask at a printers to get a decent price. Some look best cropped square but there are others that would be best as rectangles. I’ve even wondered about the viability of printing enough to sell.
When I go down to the basement to find that canvas I suspect I will also find any number of other bits of batik, screen printing and whatnot from that class (we did it for several terms; it was fun). I should really think of something to do with that stuff, too. That will really need some incubation though. I think I’ve always worried they wouldn’t wash well but I have used a couple of the batik pieces either as patches for Freya’s pants (when she was smaller) or as coasters and they seem to hold up just fine. So maybe some creative appliqué is in order.
I also know that there is an only-just-started baby quilt in a basket somewhere (the baby it was originally intended for is now 2.5 years old). Also a Mariners Compass quilt square (probably cushion sized, but I’m not sure) that I started before I moved to Canada (so that would be 2002).
And I must knit baby hats. Friends are having babies in December. And toddler hats. That 2.5 year old likes my hats.