As I am writing this blog post, I am gazing out my window at a dark, dreary winter sky. The winter blues are a real thing, and they can just suck the energy right out of you. From school delays and closings, cooped up kids, volunteer commitments, and a busy spouse, the winter can sometimes feel super draining for me. Am I the only one? And, when I feel drained, the creativity just doesn’t flow. Sometimes I will have the desire to spend time in my craft space, actually find a chunk of time to do so, and then sit there staring at a blank page. I feel restless, unsure, and a bit lost at how to get started. Then when I do create something, it often times feels forced and just unauthentic. Ugh.
So, when I hit these creative ruts, I have discovered a few tips and tricks that help me to bust through them. Not all of them work every time, but at least one of them is guaranteed to help me get my crafty mojo back!
Sunday Secret #6 – Top ways to get out of a creative rut!
1. Switch up the craft
Truthfully, Bible journaling is generally my go-to when I find a few minutes to craft. But, sometimes, I’m just not feeling it. So, I switch it up. If a Bible journaling entry is just not coming easily, then I may decide to work in my traveler’s notebook. Or create an art journal entry. Or make a card. Sometimes I decide to create a bullet journal page or play with stickers in my planner. The point is, I can still be crafty, but maybe the “creative block” had more to-do with the craft I was choosing. Sometimes I can feel burned out in one area if I’ve been spending a lot of time creating a specific kind of craft. Switch it up! Want to try something new? Check out some of the processes for Bible journaling, Memory keeping, and Art journaling on this blog!
Paper crafting has my heart and always will. But, you can hit a wall with a particular medium, no matter how much you love it. When I just can’t find the inspiration to paper craft, I’ll pull out a knitting project. Don’t get me wrong, I can only knit dishrags, but oftentimes the mindless activity of just completing stitch after stitch in a row relaxes me enough for the creative juices to start flowing. My secret dream is to learn how to sew, but I think convincing my husband that I need to invest in a new craft may be a little difficult. But, who knows?!? I think having different outlets to go to keeps you refreshed and interested in crafting!
3. Recreate a past project
We all have those projects that we fell in love with from the moment we started creating them. The process felt easy and smooth. The page turned out just as we had imagined. We tried a new technique and succeeded the first time. Those are amazing feelings. While you can’t always recreate the feeling, you can recreate the project. Feeling a little lost? Turn to a project you LOVED and make it again. Maybe change the color scheme or a couple of the materials. Or don’t change any of it. I have often recreated Bible pages or scrapbook layouts because the previous spread was just so pleasing to me. There is nothing wrong with repetition. Recreating a previous project can feel like coming home. And, I’d be willing to bet that while you are in the midst of recreating, you will feel renewed inspiration to change it up!
Still stuck? YouTube was made for moments like this. Pull up your laptop, and start searching! Find a crafter that you enjoy and follow a tutorial. Give hand-lettering a try, or perhaps mixed media techniques sound intriguing. Always wanted to create your own recipe book and never knew how? Perfect, there’s a YouTube video for that! (Well, I don’t cook, but I’m assuming there is a YouTube video for that!) Or perhaps YouTube isn’t intriguing. Go to a local craft store and buy a craft book or magazine. Those are filled with wonderful tutorials that you can recreate at home. This will definitely start to call back your crafty mojo!
Great Tutorial Resources:
5. Craft with friends
There is nothing quite like crafting with friends. Winter months can be hard because short days and bad weather tend to leave us feeling isolated. For me, these feelings of isolation can be very difficult, so I have to force myself to reach out to friends. Call up a good friend and see if they want to check out a craft store with you. Or maybe meet at a coffee shop and bring your stickers and planners and jump in! Perhaps your church has a Bible journaling group that you could attend. Or better yet, maybe you could start one! Many areas have different scrapbooking groups that meet up for “crops” on a regular basis. Open that laptop back up and start searching! Crafting with friends will lift your spirits, invigorate you, and inspire you on so many levels.
6. Reorganize your supplies
When all else fails, this is my go-to. Art and craft supplies inspire me so much. The beautiful colors, lovely packaging, and fun textures draw me in. But, going to buy more craft supplies is not always the solution for a creative slump. What works best for me is taking a day or two to clean out and reorganize my supplies. It puts the supplies back into my hands, reminding me of the resources just waiting to be used. I handle almost every supply and am reminded of what attracted me to that supply in the first place. Or, if I have no idea WHY I own that particular supply, then I am able to destash it and make room for new supplies. Either way, seeing my craft room cleaned and organized generally gives me the itch to start crafting!
Keep it creative,
-The Scrappy Wife