Guest series 2012: I asked fellow bloggers, makers and creators to write on their creativity and focus their essay on one of four topics: creativity and health, creativity and business, creativity and parenting or creativity and process. I am very excited to have a wonderful lot of fellow creative folk guest posting here at whipup.net over the next couple of months. Please welcome…
Guest series :: Creating adds sparkle to my life
Jen, and her blog partner, Autie, are stay-at-home moms living in Southern California, who love to create all things handmade. They joined forces little over a year ago to document and share their creations on their blog: iCandy handmade.
Hi, WhipUp readers! I am so excited to be here today. Kathreen has created such an interesting series! My name is Jen, and I am one of the creators behind the blog iCandy handmade. At the beginning of last year, I asked my friend Autie if she wanted to start a “craft” blog with me. I had wanted to start a sewing blog for a long time, and couldn’t seem to get going on it. (I’m such a procrastinator!) Autie already had a little craft blog of her own that she would occasionally post a project on, but I thought that if we joined forces, it would be a huge motivator for me to actually WORK on all the projects floating around in my head. Having a partner would keep us accountable, and help make the workload manageable. She loved the idea and our baby blog was born!
Not to be dramatic, but in that moment, my life changed very much for the better.
About a year before all this happened, I started reading sewing and craft blogs. At that time, I didn’t really sew all that much, just VERY occasionally. (I had a spurt when my daughter was born, making bedding and a diaper bag, but that was about it). The blogs My Momma Made It, which turned into Made By Lex (
She isn’t blogging anymore, sad!) and Grosgrain Fabulous were daily must-reads! (among others…). I would read these and feel so inspired. I would think to myself, I could make things like that! And so I started thinking about sewing. All the time. But I still didn’t do anything about it. Finally, when we started iCandy, my thoughts and ideas began to transform into something tangible. Since then, Autie and I have gotten into a blogging groove, and make sure to each have one new project completed each week.
Now how has this changed my life? Well, quite a bit.
In the prior ten years, I had struggled at times to feel fulfilled with my life. I usually felt “fine” or “ok,” but I really didn’t have anything I felt passionate about. I worked at several different jobs, but never really found a career that I loved. I graduated from college with a BA in English, but didn’t find a fabulous career using that degree. I liked to do a lot of things in my spare time but none that brought me the feeling that I was seeking. Looking back, it seems so simple: it was creativity in my life that I was lacking. All you fellow creative people/artists can probably relate to the feeling of incompleteness when you aren’t able to create.
With each creation made, photo taken and posted on our new blog, this feeling of incompleteness began to dissipate. I don’t know when exactly I noticed the change within myself. Sometimes the deadlines are hard to meet, and being the procrastinator that I am, sometimes the nights are long, but every moment spent creating is worth it. The feeling when I finish something that began as just an idea is the greatest – it brings such a sense of accomplishment. And when my daughter loves what I make her (which isn’t always…) or when I receive sweet comments of encouragement from readers… WOW.
I can now say that I have found that something that I am passionate about. It isn’t just sewing, it is the design process from start to finish. It is my art. It makes me happy. It is doing what I love. It adds sparkle to my life. And, incidentally, it adds quite a lot to our wardrobes, too!