***Strong Language Warning*** In this post, I share a quilt I created that contains a curse word. If that is not your cup of tea, this post may not be for you.
Based on some responses and conversations I had after publishing about Design Inspiration last week, one of the things that came up was the saying, “Fake it till you make it.” I think that can work for some people, but it has never helped me overcome my biggest hurdle in getting started with anything new: my fear of failure. I also stumbled across the graphic above which is a silly, tongue-in-cheek info-graphic about the creative process. What I see when I look at the pie chart is very little inspiration and work, and a whole lot of fear covered by distractions.
So when I say “Show up. Try. Learn. Repeat.” and “You become what you repeatedly do,” I completely understand that the biggest challenge might be overcoming fear about showing up and being different, feeling excluded, or being lost and overwhelmed. Or once you have shown up, there can be great fear in putting pencil to paper / thread to cloth / rotary cutter to fabric. Change / New / Learning can be scary.
I am not a self-help specialist or guru, but when I get stuck, there are tools that I use. I phone a friend. I set a timer and start, giving myself permission to throw everything away that I create during that time. I color in a coloring book to activate the creative side of my brain. I turn off all social media distractions.
And yet, even with structured tools that I have found over the years that help me find my inner courage, I can still be stuck. For instance, I have wanted to practice quilting feather patterns for a while, but I keep coming up with reasons why I never sit down to give it a go.
So I made myself a reminder to not be afraid to try what is in my heart and that the only way to grow is to try. And if I am going to try, I might as well try with gusto.
And you know what? I started with a quilted leafy feather thingy – and it was not as terrible as I thought it might be.
In fact, once I got in the groove, I had fun and started to feel like there really is something to the idea of #FlowQuilting. Moving mindfully from one motif to another, and enjoying the meditative sound of my machine and feel of moving the fabric.
So here is my 8.5-inch by 8-inch mini quilt reminder to go for it. I don’t know if it will help push me off of the next fear ledge I approach, but it helped me work through one.
And lest you think everything in the mini quilt is perfect… the flourish by the K? I was trying to quilt a nice, straight, horizontal line under Passionately and made a bobble. So I turned it into a swirly marble and continued along my way. Then I quilted the rest of the letters and by random chance I kind of like the way it turned out.