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Embrace your craft

There are some parts of our crafts that we don’t like. I have heard many knitters complain about having to knit a test swatch. The hookers are even worse; they hate making test swatches more than the knitters. The weavers complain about the math before warping, and about the warping process itself. The spinners complain about the fiber preparation before spinning. Moan, moan, moan.

I realised over the weekend that I will have to start doing something creative to stay out of the deep hole of depression. I don’t feel like knitting. I don’t feel like crochet. It is as if I am empty. My creativity is depleted. I have no urge or want whatsoever to pick up the needles or the hook. Nothing. But I have fiber.

I have a sample box of Ashford fiber, 70% New Zealand Merino and 30% Baby Alpaca. This was a gift from my very dear friend Glynis from Brooklands (www.brooklands.co.za). I made myself get up and take it out.

I chose the purple in the top left hand corner. At first I just put it down on the table, just staring at it. Eventually I made myself sit down to start prepping the fibre.

Little by little the roving was split, pre-drafted and rolled into little nests. No haste whatsoever. I just sat and enjoyed the feeling of the fiber in my hands. I started relaxing and the frenzy in my head became quiet. By the time I was done, I found myself softly humming.

Tomorrow I will start spinning. 30 minutes a day minimum. I used to do it daily; it was my prayer time. Why I stopped I don’t know. Probably just the rat race that got me again. I have to guard against the rat race. I get carried away so fast and I only realise it when I am about to burn out. Slow life. Slow life. Slow life.

Embrace your craft. All of it. Not just the ‘nice’ bits. Embrace it all. It is part of the process. Sit and prep your fiber while you allow the peace to envelop you. Walk up and down warping your loom and day-dream about the gorgeous thing you are going to weave. Knit or crochet those test swatches so that you know you will enjoy the entire process without worrying about the final result or size.

In this crazy world we live in, we have to embrace our crafts. Without it we will all suffer and fall into depression. The times we live in, is unknown territory for all of us. We have to take real good care of ourselves and our mental health. So my dear fellow crafter – embrace your craft. All of it.