My Creative Journey Combining Multiple Hobbies
That won me a contest with a fabric prize
Growing up I was never interested in being a creator. I preferred dealing with facts and majored in finance where my day job involves numbers with no need for a creative side. Since I'm a data-driven person, what was the catalyst that sparked my interest in creative endeavors?
It all began with a tote bag that caught my eye in the gift shop during a museum visit in Chicago. At the time over ten years ago, the purse was priced at $70, way out of my budget. For reasons I still can't fathom today, my analytical mind decided I had the capability to learn how to make this tote for less. Never mind I would spend a couple of hundred dollars buying a sewing machine and supplies to make this said tote. I also didn't consider the time I needed to learn how to sew. For a numbers person, I wasn't thinking straight because I would've lost time and money if I never used the sewing machine again after I made the tote.
Thankfully, I didn't stop sewing. Since making the tote, I've made numerous practical items and my return on investment has exceeded the money I spent on sewing supplies. I discovered my love of creating and tried other creative pursuits including fabric painting, beading, wire jewelry, and scrapbooking. During this time experimenting with various hobbies, I decided to make something to hang in my craft room.
Enter a creative challenge to myself. How many hobbies could I incorporate into one piece of artwork?
I knew I had to use fabric but what would be the theme? I decided to start sewing fabric scraps together to see where inspiration took me. I love to use fabric scraps because I can combine multiple prints together to create unique designs and the surprise element of the final product is a bonus.
I ended up with my fabric scraps sewn together ( picture on left ) and it looked like a skirt. If it doesn't, you need to use your imagination here. I turned over the raw edges on all sides and this is when it really started to look like a skirt especially after I gathered the top of the fabric to make that into the waist ( picture on right ).
At this point, I thought why not make an entire summer dress because who doesn't love the feel of summer. But a dress wasn't enough. What else could I add to compliment this dress?
I had a paper cutting machine I bought for scrapbooking with the perfect cardstock and summer theme cartridge I used to cut flowers, butterflies, and a sunhat to add to my dress.
Since a tote bag started my creative journey I made a miniature one with ribbon handles.
After the sundress and tote bag, I thought this could become a summer outfit. I found a wire jig in my wire jewelry supplies to construct a clothes hanger to showcase the dress as if it was ready to be worn.
I completed the outfit with shoes I cut from a piece of scrap leather and I was done.
I didn't know where inspiration would take me by combining multiple hobbies into one artwork but I was thrilled with how this artwork turned out.
The story doesn't end here though.
How did I end up winning a contest when my original intention was just to have something to decorate my craft room?
Enter my love of Liberty fabric scraps. A seller I had previously purchased from was holding a scrap competition for customers to show off projects they had made with scraps. I entered their contest and ended up winning! My prize - Liberty fabric scraps. That was a very happy day...
To this day I can't believe I won the contest. Being an analytical person I never imagined I could create something others felt was prizeworthy.
If you're reading this and feel creative inspiration has struck don't stop. Follow your imagination and make it into a reality. If a numbers person like me can do it, you can amaze yourself at what you can create too. Start finding your own creative happiness today.
Thanks for reading and happy creating!