Time to Get Crafting

I am a crafter by nature or maybe genetics as my mom is also a crafter. I think maybe part of it is the teacher in my too.  I love making things and being creative.  I am one of those people that will see something cute and think, “I can make that.”  Instead of just simply buying it, I either then kill myself to recreate it or buy all the supplies to make it and never follow through.  This is why there is an entire wall in my office of shelves that are full of crafting materials and unfinished projects.  It isn’t that I don’t have full intentions of completing them.  It is that for so many years, my life was so crazy that I never really had the time to devote to finishing things that were for fun, so they kept getting put to the side.  Now that I have some more time on my hands, I have gotten around to a few projects like the new wreath for my front door that I am totally in love with.  (I won’t even tell you how many unfinished wreaths/door decorations I have just waiting to be done.  Let’s just say it is an outlandish number.)  It is usually the projects for my house or for me personally that never get done.  Things that I do for others are much more likely to be finished. That usually means that it is either a gift with a deadline or I am being paid to create it.  No, I don’t have a crafting business to add to my long resume of job titles, but I have been known to create things for family and friends for a small fee.  I’m not really good at charging people, so I typically only charge whatever it cost me to make it. I know…that isn’t good business, but it is what it is. 

While we were in South Carolina last week, I decided to embark on a new crafting/home improvement project.  Since we bought and moved into our house a little over a year ago, we have had the same Roman shades in the living room that came with the house.  We have 4 windows that have an arch at the top, so these shades had to have been custom made.  Traditional Roman shades don’t work with the arch so I have been searching for a similar shade that would work with the windows to replace these since they do not match the rest of my décor.  That task has proved very difficult and has been a source of much angst.  I found people that could custom make them for me, but they were going to cost me a fortune.  I finally decided that I was going to attempt to make them myself.  Keep in mind that although I am a crafter, I do not sew or own a sewing machine.  My one attempt to make curtains using my mom’s sewing machine years ago was a total disaster, and my grandmother ended up taking them apart and remade them.  I don’t know why sewing is difficult for me, but I could barely figure out how to operate the sewing machine much less than sew a straight line.  How is it that I am going to make Roman shades without sewing them you ask? Well, I am going to attempt to use that iron on tape (stitch witchery) in place of stitching.  I may be totally kidding myself in thinking that I can make this work, but I have to try. 

My task while in SC was to get my mom to help me find all the materials that I need to make the shades including fabric. Well, finding a fabric that I liked, that would work for the project, and that had enough yards in stock proved to be quite difficult. I needed a fabric that was a little stiffer to make it work.  My windows are basically floor to ceiling, so I needed more yards than any fabric store had in stock.  Every time I found a material I liked, we quickly discovered there wasn’t enough.  My mom later had the genius idea to look at regular curtain panels that I could convert to the shades.  The task then was to find a curtain that I liked that had 4 panels in stock.  This was much harder than anticipated.  I guess many places are low on inventory due to COVID production delays.  Anyway, after two days of looking, I finally found something that I like that I hope will work.  The fabric isn’t as stiff as I would like it to be, but I am hoping it will still work.  I may spray a ton of starch on it to see if that helps.  Now, I believe I have all of the pieces and parts that I need to get started.  I think my biggest task will be cutting the length of the panels to the right width.  I am not sure I will be able to cut it in a straight, even line.  At this point, though, I am not sure I care how it looks as long as it matches.  I seriously have not wanted people to come in my house for the past year because of the totally nonmatching shades. 

I seriously don’t know why I do these things to myself when I know it is going to totally stress me out! Actually, yes I do.  I would much rather kill myself trying to make them for around $150 than to pay someone else $1000 to do it for me. Can I really make shades without sewing??? Stay tuned to see the fruits of my labor.  It could be a masterpiece or an utter failure.  It may take me a whole year (or two) to get it done, though, so don’t hold your breath.

Anchored,

Who has Time for Hobbies?

Necklace

Does anyone else get wrapped up in all of the videos on social media showing how to make all these adorable Christmas crafts? This happens to me every year and it has turned me into a hoarder.  I see this cute idea. I go out and buy all of the stuff to make it.  Then life gets in the way and it never actually gets made. I have this whole pile of unfinished or never started crafts that are taking up space in my office.  They aren’t all Christmas stuff either.  Let’s not forget all the times I have seen something that is so cute that I could just buy, but I don’t spend the money on it because I think I can just make it myself and never do.  Another conundrum is when I go to the Target Dollar spot or a craft store and I see some cute thing that I think I can turn into something even cuter to give as a gift. I buy it and then never get around to doing that cute idea I had. I am a crafter at heart.  I love crafting, but I just never have the time to really devote to it.  I guess I come by it honest.  My mom is the same way, only about 1000 times worse.  We have teased her about being a hoarder for years.  We both hoard crafting stuff. It’s really sad.  I honestly do wish that I had the time to complete all of the ideas I have, but I just don’t.  Other things totally take priority.  The only time things really get made is if it is for someone other than myself or someone is paying me to make something.  The things I want for myself always get pushed to the back burner. 

Honestly the two hobbies that bring me joy are crafting and reading, and I don’t spend enough time doing either.  It took forcing myself to choose a book to read to write about on the blog each month to get me to actually take the time to do it.  In reality, I should be reading 3-4 books a month instead of just one. Maybe if I turn one day of the month into craft day on the blog, some of these projects will get done.  It’s a thought that maybe I will consider.  Let’s be real though.  It’s probably not going to happen.  It takes time to craft, and I just don’t have that kind of time.  Maybe one day when my kids are grown and gone, I will get around to doing the things that I love.  

I feel like most moms will say that they don’t have time for hobbies.  I know I have said it a million times myself.  No matter what your hobby is, I bet you don’t devote nearly enough time to it. We always put others before ourselves, especially our kids.  It is just in our nature as women.  While I am sure that caring for your children brings you joy, it isn’t the same kind of joy that you get from a hobby.   I think it is important that we do try to make time for ourselves to do the things that we love.  Even if it is only one time a month, it is better than not at all.  We have to take the time to fill our cups with joy.  It is ok to be selfish every now and then, because it will make you a better mom and spouse in the long run. I feel like it is important to our mental health.  I don’t know about you, but when I am actually engaged in one of my hobbies like reading or crafting, it is like an escape.  It gives me a chance to focus on something fun and easy and not on the day-to-day hustle and bustle.  It gives my brain a break, and that is a break that we need sometimes to stay sane.  It can’t always be about others.  We have to focus on ourselves sometimes. I know for some of you it may have been a really long time since you even thought about what your hobbies are or what things you enjoy doing outside of everyday life.  I encourage you to think about it and then take the time to do it one day this month.  I know that I need to take my own advice and take the time to read and craft. I know that it will be hard to do, but I am going to make a promise to myself to do better. I am going to carve out time that is designated for doing one of my hobbies because I know that I need it.  You need it too. I can guarantee it!   

Anchored and Rambling,