This blog post was originally going to be titled, “Less Thinking, More Doing”, but I decided that wasn’t quite right. I am actually quite a big fan of thinking. When it comes to creative ideas, I find it very useful to mull things over before I start. I have inherited from my Dad an ability to visualise how something will be constructed before I start making it which has a good deal of practical value. There is nothing worse than starting a project and just as the creativity is flowing freely having to stop because you don’t have some vital tool for the job or there was something really obvious you missed. That said, sometimes, no matter how hard you try, it isn’t always possible to envisage how your bright, creative idea will work out. I have found that this can stop me from making a start on something because I will put it off until I have thought it through some more.
This week I came to a bit of a realisation. My little sister is getting married in August. I have come to terms with the fact that, although in my mind she is still about four years old, she is a grown woman. I have even bought my dress (mostly because my husband more or less frogmarched me to the shops recently…..and, yes, the man is an angel!). What I was stuck on was what to give them as a gift. I don’t mean the practical “help with the expense of the wedding/defray the cost of the honeymoon/buy something for the home” present – that bit is easy. What I was struggling with was an additional personal keepsake that I could make for them. I had the kernel of an idea but I was still musing how the idea might work in practice.
One of the stitches I wanted to include in this piece were bullion knot roses. Now, whilst I have stitched plenty of bullion knots in crewel work, I haven’t made them with embroidery floss and I haven’t ever tried making them into roses. So, I grabbed some scrap fabric and odds and ends of floss and decided to just sit down and practice for a bit.
I am so glad I did! Firstly, stitching bullion knots with embroidery floss is quite different to using crewel yarn. I would say that it is a lot more fiddly! I certainly needed the practice! Second, I found that whilst I sat and stitched my practice knots, it became clear to me what I ought to do about the gift for my sister. The practice gave me the idea for a much more workable variation of what I had in mind. I have decided that from now on I will have more scrap fabric on hand so I can just bash out a few ideas. It will be like the embroidery equivalent of doodling! I think it may also curb my tendency to procrastinate. At least, I hope it will!
I so wish I could share a little more about what I am going to do but my sister reads this blog (at least she says she does although, quite frankly, I have my suspicions about whether that is true!). So, I will have to keep it under wraps until August.
I wanted to leave you with a picture of just some of the masses of magnolia blossom that has been bursting forth in the last few days.
I’m afraid we’ve had horribly wet weather recently and this was just a quick snap taken on my phone so it isn’t the best photo! A good reminder that no matter much I practice stitching flowers, there is nothing like the real thing.