Monday, January 11, 2010

The January Effect ~ or, Recreational Sewing Only, Please

Ah, January .... sweet, sweet January. Month of extremely hot weather.Month of icy poles in the late afternoon. And most importantly, month of Recreational Sewing Only, Please.

Crafters, you know what I mean. We spend all year slogging our guts out for markets and events, promising ourselves we'll eventually get to that other teetering pile of fabrics and patterns and half-formed ideas in our head. We wear our fingers to the bone - those of us without thimbles, that is - embroidering linens and cushions and cute curios.

Come September, we shift things up a gear for the coming Christmas onslaught, forget about sleeping and downtime, and then we spend all of November and December eating and breathing marquees, tables, stock piles and stress. Yikes, the Christmas onslaught! It's like an avalanche made out of crochet, quilts and market bookings all rushing down the mountain to smother us. Can you imagine - smothered by craft?

Then suddenly, there's calm. The sweet breath of January blows in, and with it comes the month of rest. I have declared it the month of Recreational Sewing Only Please. No markets in January. No stock construction. Just sewing for me, pure and simple.

It is an absolute tonic to the wounded marketing soul, that is true. The frenzy of December totally slips away, and the dam bursts on my creative juices (eeeuw, not a great metaphor, but sorry) and a great big torrent of "otherwise" creativity comes pouring out.

I think The January Effect has something to do with the momentum that builds up in the Christmas onslaught, combined with the vacuum of any actual scheduled activity. As if we get our engines revving and then the road comes to an end and we shoot out into a wide, green field, airborne and free for what seems like an endless forever before we hit the ground again.

To wit: in the four days I had access to a sewing machine between Christmas and New Year, I made a shorts pattern I'd been meaning to try for months, I did a top to go with it, I created a dress using an out of print Vogue style supplemented by a  number of convoluted design features out of my head, and then made another pair of shorts.

Yesterday, I made a Hoot, a geisha doll and a big, fat babushka, just for something different. And - get this -  I still had enough time to watch three episodes of Big Love (Season 2) and two of Project Runway (Season 4).

Go me!


I Purr-Furr to Craft said...

what a lovely read! January is a month to recharge and get ready for the rest of the year. a time to experiment and set out new lines of order. As long as it is fun, do it.

Polka Dot Rabbit said...

i've been loving my downtime, I burnt myself out a bit crafting during the second half of last year and it became more work than pleasure (without the financials of my day job!) so chilling out has been wonderful :)

Sarah said...

You do hear it all gets so much with markets etc.

Well deserved down time and also so much time to do more...

prashant said...

I think I'm in love... with your fabric!

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