Tuesday, December 07, 2010

December 6: She's Crafty

December 6 Prompt: Make. What was the last thing you made? What materials did you use? Is there something you want to make, but you need to clear some time for it? (Author: Gretchen Rubin)

The very first thought that leapt into my head after reading today's prompt was that I made all kinds of stuff in 2010. I made a fool of myself, made mistakes, made half a novel, made baby shower invitations, made some new friends, made some fabulous meals and baked delights, but I'm guessing based on the themes of the rest of this Reverb 10 project, that Gretchen is asking about creative items that I've made. Though making a fool of myself certainly qualifies, I'll go with the tangible this time.

Reverb: Make

For almost eight years I've been making beaded jewelry. I love it. I've always been the kind of woman who likes accessories. Scarves, shoes, purses, jewelry, I love bold colors, unique forms and details, and what better way to get unique jewelry than to make it yourself? I got started just trying to find a cheap way to repair a broken necklace.  I bought the replacement beads and a couple of cheap tools, a little instruction book, and I fixed it. In fact, I improved it. Suddenly I was hooked. I started with cheap glass beads from Hobby Lobby and over the years I picked up new techniques, experimented, explored, dabbled in wire work, upgraded my supplies to lovely semi-precious stones, sterling silver and Bali silver and I love the work that I make.

For those eight years I did at least a few craft shows every fall, and the last couple of years the summer has been filled with making jewelry and the fall filled with weekend shows. The shows were mostly local and generally a lot of fun. Lots of chatting up strangers and setting up tents. I made enough money to keep myself in supplies, gifts and plenty of my own jewelry, but I never strived to make it a full time business. This is a craft that I love and that I'm pretty good at. But that's all. I love helping people match an outfit or find that perfect gift, I've had the pleasure of creating pieces for friends who were getting married and I always love to see people wearing something I've made. I love making jewelry. Until this year.

I burned myself out. Just the thought of signing up for craft shows made me feel obligated and pressured. The fun was gone. The passion was gone. In March I decided to skip doing any craft shows at all. I took the fall off and I loved having the break. I don't know if I'll go back. I don't miss it.  I still have all the supplies, but I have hardly made any jewelry all year. If someone asks for something in particular, then I am happy to make it for them. I've made a few custom things and fixed a few pieces that friends or family needed repaired, but there is only one piece that I've made recently that was any sort of a creative challenge.

Reverb: Make

And it was just for me. It's long and multicolored, lots of greens, purples and one big pink chunky hard candy cherry quartz. Lots of wire work, some chain and these antiqued links connecting everything together. I love it. It's different than anything I've made and I wear it almost every week. So while I may have cut back on making jewelry, I've still got it in me when I'm in the mood. That's reassuring, and more fun.

What was the last thing you made? Jewelry, knitting, painting, woodworking? Maybe just a sandwich? And if it was a sandwich, what kind? I'm kind of hungry for a p b & j right now.


Nae said...

I had no idea you weren't really making at all these days -- LOVE the piece pictured! You have a unique eye for color and balance, and quite honestly the "S" creations I own are ALL my most favorite, most worn jewelry. Rethinking my plan to go to the PO later this week: Ff I was going to mail you some unique mostly antique beads next week - would you still want them? If not I am not offended...

bethany actually said...

I think the last thing I made, besides dinner, was a baby blanket for Elliora. Or I guess you could say, I made a baby. :-)

Katrina said...

I LOVE that necklace!!! If you ever want to make another one like that or want to sell that one to me, let me know. I would snatch that up quick!! :)

What have I made lately? Does lots of preschool crafts count? I feel like I am making something all the time.

kassie lou said...

Luhar, I would still love the beads, and check your mailbox.
Bethany, yours wins. :)
Katrina, I'd love to make one for you, colors you'd like?