Have you lost your sewjo?
So many people I know are feeling little to no desire to sew, let alone create. Whether it is personal circumstances (kids, parents, sickness, bills!), politics, drama, or simply the heat, sewing machines are sitting idle this summer. It is all totally normal. Yet I find so many folks feel the need to apologize for it, or worse, give up on sewing all together!
Remember people, this is a hobby. (Unless, of course you are an industry professional.) We are completely free to create or not create on our own time. Despite what our mothers or partners or kids might say, it isn't wasted space or time or even money if we don't sew for a little while. This isn't a gym membership where money is going down the drain when we don't go. The money's already been spent, so there is that.
Maybe you go in an pet fabric? Or you scroll through Instagram, liking pictures of pretty quilts? Or you don't think about quilts at all as you lick that summer ice cream cone and wet your feet in a lake? It's all good.
Seriously, it doesn't matter. Sew or don't sew. You have your reasons.
Now all that being said, the last thing I want is people to give up on their creativity. If you are missing your sewjo and want to cultivate it or at least try and locate it, here are some helpful tips.
1. Turn off the phone and the news
Whether it is the state of the world or the feeling of inadequacy from social media, all they are doing is making you feel bad. It's totally okay to walk away from it for a bit. The world will keep spinning, posts will be posted, and the news isn't likely to change. Give yourself a break to create.
2. Create in response
Channel your feelings (anger, despair, or whatever) into a creation. It's okay to make an angry quilt. Embrace the process of doing so even more than the final project. Make a statement with your work, whatever that statement might be. (Great ideas here.)
3. Make something different
Try a different kind of creating. Whether that is pottery, painting, brush lettering, woodworking, garment making, or anything. Learning something new will get your neurons firing and your hands moving.
4. Clean your sewing space
Or, at the very least, sort your scraps. Sometimes our spaces and the clutter overwhelms us. Usually the thought of cleaning is overwhelming too. Sorting your scraps - I recommend the tips in Sunday Morning Quilts - does wonders for freeing up mental space. It can be very inspiring. Whether that inspiration takes you to your sewing machine or helps you find it remains to be seen.
5. Establish a habit of creative action
You know me, I love my Morning Make. Frankly, if I didn't have this habit - one I still consciously make - I wouldn't be sewing at all. Most days it is 15-20 minutes, some days I can get a whole hour. For me it is about committing to the dedicated time before anyone else demands my attention, like the kids or our business. It might be before bed for you, or at lunch, or post dog walk. Whatever works. The key to it is that creativity begets creativity. The creative act invites creativity. So if you are struggling, just get your butt in the seat and sew. Pick up an old project or sew scraps together mindlessly. You may not be interested in running a marathon right now, but it will be a lot easier to get back into training if you at least walk every day.