Have you made any New Year’s resolutions yet? Forget losing weight or trying to be a better person. Instead, resolve to be crafty every single day! Over in the Crafting 365 group on the photo-sharing site Flickr, lots of crafters are doing just that, posting daily photos of their works in progress, newly finished items and wonderfully messy workspaces, and you can join them…
I started the Crafting 365 project this summer when I realized with a sinking heart that I’d gone almost a month without making anything. I’ve been making stuff (and blogging about it at BugsandFishes.blogspot.com) almost every day since and it has been AWESOME. Even if I spend just ten minutes sewing on a few beads or doodling ideas, that little bit of craftiness is always enjoyable, and I’ve been making so much stuff! I rarely suffer from the dreaded “crafter’s block” nowadays, as even on my uninspired days I just carry on crafting, and sharing my progress with the world via Flickr and my blog has been a great way of making me stick to my goals.
[Day 72 — Choosing Threads, by sallyent]
“Real life” — the day job, the kids, the housework — often gets in the way of creative time for part-time crafters, especially as few of us have dedicated studio spaces. A common sight in the group is work laid out in easily portable upturned box lids, or on the coffee table in the evening after the kids have gone to bed. Crafting 365 group member ebbandflo says "it’s been great to take pics of my portable crafting exploits to share with others, hopefully to add a few sanity saving tips to other crafty mums out there." Making time for your hobby is a sanity-saver sometimes, and sallyent admits that “crafting is something I do for me — and that’s why it always comes bottom of the list! So being part of Crafting 365 just gives me that extra push to get something done.”
[Day 44 — Knitting on the train, by memake]
Motivation and support are vital in achieving any goal, and the Crafting 365 project offers these in spades! Building up a photo journal of your work really makes you realize just how much you have accomplished, and our little group is hugely supportive. Homemadeoriginals comments that “seeing what [the other members] are doing provides me with encouragement to create and post each day, but my motivation is ultimately internal. I love looking at the Crafting 365 pool…Posting my photo, seeing what everyone has done, and getting the satisfaction that I’ve created something each day.” Paperbluebird says “it has made me realize that crafting doesn’t have to take all day” and “I’ve really enjoyed the supportive nature of the group.”
We celebrate each other’s successes and finished projects, and whenever I see something from the group on the Etsy front page I get a big grin on my face and feel weirdly proud!
[Day 76 — Multitasking, by knithappens]
Above all, being part of the group and seeing the daily output of so many crafters provides inspiration. “It is so inspiring," says YorktownRoad, “to peruse their photos, share in their process and be exposed to so many different types of craft.” Within the group are jewellers, knitters, ceramicists, fibre artists, painters: all kinds of different artists working on a wide range of personal and business projects, so there’s always something to fire up your creative juices. Klippity finds that “this sharing of diverse crafts keeps me constantly inspired, thinking about new projects, and wondering what I will do tomorrow” and blockpartypress enjoys seeing “the different stages of people’s projects as they are completed.”
[Day 84 — Adding glass beads ready for the kiln, by seaurchin]
I love to see people’s finished projects, but my favorite photos are always the works-in-progress. There’s just something so wonderful about being able to peek behind the curtain and see pottery before it’s glazed or fired, scraps of material or balls of wool gradually becoming a quilt or a blanket, ideas becoming fully formed pieces of art. I am learning so much about the way I work, too, and lots of us are finding that our daily photos are helping us think about the “process” and to enjoy the making even more than before. As GuerillaEmbroidery puts it, “It encourages me to recognize the creativity in my everyday actions, as well as spurring me on to create new work for my business.”