I have over 300 blogs in my Bloglines subscription list. They are divided into Family Blogs, Stitchery Blogs, Designer/Shop Blogs, Life and Home Blogs, two folders of blogs of members of on-line groups I belong to, and then a ton of quilting blogs. With so many blogs I generally read all the new entries first and mark the ones I want to comment on later or entries that inspire me to write a blog entry. Sometimes I get behind on making comments and the ideas I want to write about get lost in the list.
I decided this afternoon is a good time to get caught up on two of the entries that have inspired me to write a blog entry. Hopefully you'll indulge me and keep reading.
I've had Jodi's My Creative Journey bookmarked since she wrote it over a month ago. Over the last several months I've been giving a lot of thought to my own creative journey. My Irish grandmother, Dema, taught me many needle arts when I was growing up. I was lucky she lived with us until I was 6 years old. Then she married the widower across the street from us and moved over there. She was always close by.
Dema was always making something - sewing clothes or quilts, needlepoint, beading, or crocheting. I remember making quilts with her using a 4-inch cardboard template, tracing each square and then cutting it out carefully. Our quilts were always tied, never quilted. My first quilt was a red, yellow and blue calico 4-patch quilt for my first born (I was a very young mother).
Our needlepoint projects were done on plastic canvas with yarn. I had a book called 97 Needlepoint Alphabets that I loved to use. I needlepointed my niece's name on squares of plastic canvas and made a wall hanging for her. She is now 26 years old and I think she still has it!
Somewhere my grandma learned beading. She made wonderful bead mats. I am honored to have two of them. Here is a blue and yellow one I have and keep on a table in my home. I made beaded mats too, but unfortunately the box they were in ended up in the trash during one of our Navy moves.
I made many projects with my grandma until my first DH and I moved away when he enlisted in the Navy. For a few years I didn't make any creative projects.
When we were living in Norfolk in the late 80's and early 90's I started cross stitching. Here are four Paula Vaughan projects I stitched then. They need to be cleaned up and mounted so I can properly display them. Little did I know then that quilting would become an important part of my creative life.
When I left my husband my creative endeavors took a back seat to supporting myself and my son. It wasn't until the summer of 2004 when I saw a quilt on DH's aunt's bed that I thought I would like to start quilting again. I took an on-line quilt course from Quilt University and the rest is history.
Somewhere in my upbringing I was taught that you could only do one creative activity at a time - if you quilted, then you only quilted. If you crocheted, then you only crocheted. I've tried to figure out where I learned this behavior and I've often struggled with the concept. When I started quilting again I gave away my overflowing box of DMC floss because "quilters don't do cross stitch or embroidery". Boy was I wrong! When I discovered Australian designers combine stitching and quilting I was in heaven. Now I have a wonderful collection of Presencia Finca floss and a growing selection of projects on my To Do list.
Two weeks ago the crochet bug bit me and you've seen the results - a baptism afghan and a pair of Red Sox for Mr. E. Mary Grace at Hooked on Needles wrote about her daughter starting her own Babette afghan. I checked out the afghan, fell in love with it and bought the pattern. Now, I have no yarn stash, but I think that having to shop for yarn on our upcoming vacation will be lots of fun!
So now I have to think about rearranging my studio. It is currently set up for sewing, but I need to make room for yarn, for embroidery and for scrapbooking (another new endeavor).
You know what? I think I've finally accepted the fact that I can be creative in more than one medium if I want to be. Who's going to stop me?
Tell me, do you work in more than one medium? Do you have a favorite medium? How do you decide what to work on? Are you driven by deadlines? Or do you let your Creative Muse lead you?
I'll answer these questions in an upcoming post.