When I was a kid, I took arts & crafts very seriously. In fact, I distinctly remember a time in the second grade when my class was given the assignment of creating flowers out of construction paper. As the teacher went around the room to hand out the coloured paper we were going to use, I began imagining the most beautiful flower with electric blue petals and a hot pink centre with a leafy vibrant green stem. Unfortunately, by the time she got to me, the only colours she had left were orange, brown, and yellow. So I cried.
(Me. Recovering from my craft failure with a bowl of ice cream)
Over the years, I moved on from that traumatic creative event to taking a variety of different arts & crafts classes, trying my hand at everything from sewing to apple doll making. However, as I got older, I found myself growing increasingly judgmental of my handmade work. So I just stopped.
While I eventually moved on to other creative outlets such as dance and baking, I always hoped I would get back into crafting. I spent hours pouring over some of the amazing handcrafted work on Etsy, but never had the courage to jump back in. It was a peculiar fear of failure, I think, that held me back.
However, over the past few months, I have wholeheartedly jumped back in. So far I’ve created felted bunnies, stars and space ships, as well as a few stuffed creatures like this guy.
Are my creations perfect? No. But that’s exactly why I love them. In this mass produced world where we have little understanding of the origins of the stuff we buy, there’s something so special about creating (or buying) something one-of-a-kind that someone spent hours to make. There’s also something rewarding about seeing something come to life that you made with your own hands. I’ve learned to see the incredible value of the process of creation—instead of only focusing on the outcome. If you’ve never made anything, I invite you to give it a try. And if you’re already a crafter, I would love to know what YOU love about it?